The big airliner trijets, relics from a bygone era when jet engine technology was considered not reliable enough, so for mid-to-long haul flights it was considered than three engines was a nice compromise between the more expensive four engines layout, and the ETOPS regulation-mandated short-ranged two engines layout.

Top to bottom, left to right: Douglas DC-10, the killer of the 70′s; Lockheed TriStar, the airliner that pushed the company out of the civilian business; McDonnell Douglas MD-11, the freighters’s dream; Hawker Siddeley Trident, the undeserved underdog; Boeing 727, the west’s DC-3 jet equivalent; Yakovlev Yak-42, the last trijet airliner; and the Tupolev Tu-154, the east’s DC-3 jet equivalent.