mcdonnell douglas md 11

McDonnell Douglas MD-11, one of my favorite airliners, and a model that fixed almost of the problems of the extremely deadly DC-10 (almost but not all since it trade them for an unusually high, and therefore dangerous, landing speed).

It no longer flies passenger flights, since as a trijet is more expensive to use than a conventional 2-engined airliner, but still heavily used as a cargo aircraft, as seen here with its FedEx livery. 

The age of the creative aircraft designs, at least for airliners, has passed, now the norm being making them as similar to each other as humanly possible…


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.