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NASA’s Super Guppy (1965)

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The Aero Spacelines Super Guppy is quite the odd aircraft. Based on the fuselage of the C-97J Turbo Stratocruiser — known in civilian life as the Boeing 377 — the Super Guppy was designed to haul oversized cargo the world over, made possible by its 46 foot height and the way it can open like a can sawed in half.

Only five were built after its first appearance in 1965, and only one is still left flying today. Operated by NASA, it is currently used to ferry bits intended for the International Space Station and Project Orion.

The other four Super Guppies are mothballed — one in the UK, one in France, one in Germany, and the model shown below — the second Guppy but the first “Super Guppy” built — which is preserved in the desert at the Pima Air and Space Museum in Tucson, Arizona. – AJW

NASA's Super Guppy

NASA's Super Guppy

NASA's Super Guppy

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