A whale-shaped plane, Airbus Beluga, has sent netizens in a tizzy after it landed at Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport on Saturday evening, after 23 years. The plane has now become the talk of the Twitter space.
According to media reports, the plane was carrying two helicopters, four times the size of a normal wide-body aircraft, and left for Thailand on Sunday evening. A cargo flight, this was the second time the aircraft had visited Kolkata since 1999.
Taking to Twitter, Kolkata Aiport wrote, “Is it a whale? Is it a plane? It's the #Beluga! Say hello to the majestic giant the #Airbus Beluga which landed for the first time yesterday at Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport, #Kolkata. Yes we are mesmerised by this beast, are you?”
Is it a whale? Is it a plane? It's the #Beluga!— Kolkata Airport (@aaikolairport) May 22, 2022
Say hello to the majestic giant the #Airbus Beluga which landed for the first time yesterday at Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport, #Kolkata. Yes we are mesmerised by this beast, are you? pic.twitter.com/zo9IFtWc0Q
What is Airbus Beluga?
The Airbus A300 B4-608 ST super transporter or Beluga is a version of the standard A3000-600 wide-body airliner modified to carry aircraft parts and oversized cargo.
The plane is nearly six-storey high and its wingspan is almost 45m. Its internal cargo hold is 124ft long, 23ft wide and 23ft high.
Earlier this year, Airbus introduced six new-generation BelugaXLs – based on the larger A330-200 platform – to support Airbus’ ramp-up of its airliner production.
Why is it creating a buzz?
The Beluga flights resemble the facial structure of the extremely friendly Beluga Whale found in Arctic and sub-Arctic cetacean. They are known to be very amiable to humans.