- Airborne aircraft carrier
Airborne aircraft carriers are aircraft which can launch other aircraft. These typically are large aircraft that launch fighter-interceptor planes.
List of airborne aircraft carriers
Dirigible aircraft carriers
Several plans were drawn up to outfit
Zeppelin-type dirigible airships to launch and recover fighters. These are also the typical airborne aircraft carriers found in fiction.
USS Los Angeles (ZR-3), used for prototype testing for the Akron and Macon.
USS Akron (ZRS-4)
USS Macon (ZRS-5)
Bomber aircraft carriers
Early days of the jet age had fighter aircraft that could not fly long distances and still match point defence fighters or interceptors in dogfighting. The solution was long range bombers that would carry or tow their escort fighters. This is similar in concept to cruisers that carried escort fighters, or the
merchant aircraft carrier.
Several bombers have been used by NASA as launch platforms for experimental aircraft.
Transport aircraft carriers
A few specific aircraft have been built or modified to transport other aircraft; the most famous of these, a pair of modified
Boeing 747s known as the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft(SCA) belonging to the United State's National Aeronautics and Space Administration ( NASA), and are now used only to transport the US Space ShuttleOrbiter vehicle, though one was used by the Space Shuttle Enterpriseto actually launch the orbiter for atmospheric approach and landing tests. The Soviet Unioncreated a similar vehicle (the Antonov An-225) to support the "Buran" spacecraft.
More recently, White Knight has been used to launch the
Space Ship Oneprivately owned space craft, and is slated to be used for a follow on design.
Shuttle Carrier Aircraft(SCA) - launched flight testing of Enterprise
* White Knight - launched
* White Knight Two - designed to launch
* White Knight Three - anticipated to launch
submarine aircraft carrier
land mobile aircraft carrier
fictional airborne aircraft carriers
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