Twin-boom aircraft

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de Havilland Vampire T11 of the UK Vampire Preservation Group displays at the Cotswold Air Show (2010).
An IAI Heron - an unmanned aerial vehicle with a twin boom configuration.

A Twin-boom aircraft has two longitudinal booms fixed to the main wing on either side of the centre line. The booms may contain ancillary items such as fuel tanks and/or provide a supporting structure for external ancillary items. Typically, twin tailbooms provide mounting points for one or more tail surfaces, although on some types such as the Rutan Model 72 Grizzly the booms run forward of the main wing. The twin-boom configuration is distinct from twin-fuselage designs.

Transport aircraft[edit]

The twin-boom configuration allows a cargo door or large access door to be placed in the back of the aircraft, free from obstruction by the tail assembly. Examples include the C-82 Packet, C-119 Flying Boxcar, Armstrong Whitworth AW.660 Argosy and Transavia PL-12 Airtruk.

Combat aircraft[edit]

The twin-boom configuration has been adopted by combat aircraft designers for several reasons:

General aviation[edit]

Some modern high-efficiency designs have twin booms which distribute the load along the wing span and/or stiffen the overall structure.

Examples include the Rutan Voyager, Rutan Model 72 Grizzly and the Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer.

List of twin-boom aircraft[edit]

Type Country Date Role Status Description
Adam A700
Adam A500
Armstrong Whitworth AW.660 Argosy United Kingdom Transport
Bell XP-52 USA Fighter Prototype
Blohm & Voss BV 138 Germany
Cessna Skymaster/O-2 Skymaster USA
De Havilland Sea Vixen United Kingdom Fighter Production
De Havilland Vampire United Kingdom Fighter Production
De Havilland Venom United Kingdom Fighter Production
Fairchild C-82 Packet USA
Fairchild C-119 Flying Boxcar USA Transport
FMA IA 67 Córdoba [citation needed]
Focke-Wulf Fw 189 Germany
Fokker F.25 Germany
Fokker G.I Germany
Hughes XF-11 USA Fighter Prototype
IAI Heron Israel UAV
Lockheed P-38 Lightning USA Fighter Production
Nord Noratlas France Transport
North American Rockwell OV-10 Bronco USA
Northrop P-61 Black Widow USA
PZL M-15 Belphegor Poland
Rutan Voyager USA
Saab 21 Sweden
Sadler Vampire
Savoia-Marchetti SM.91/SM.92 Italy
Scaled Composites White Knight USA
Rutan Model 72 Grizzly USA
SIPA S-200 Minijet
Sukhoi Su-12 Soviet Union
Sukhoi Su-80 Soviet Union
Schwade Kampfeinsitzer Nr 2 [1]
Schweizer RU-38 Twin Condor
Transavia PL-12 Airtruk
US Army RQ-7 Shadow USA
Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer USA


  1. ^ Green, W. and Swanborough, G.; The complete book of fighters, Salamander, 1994, Page 521.

See also[edit]