How Many Wheels Are on a Plane?

August 19, 2023
David Sunnyside

The number of wheels on a plane can vary greatly depending on the aircraft type and design. However, the majority of commercial airliners have 6 to 22 wheels arranged over 3 to 5 landing gears. Cargo airplanes like the Antonov An-225 have several more wheels to distribute cargo weight evenly across runways.

Airplane wheels must be able to stand up to enormous amounts of force when the plane takes off and lands. The tires also have to cope with extreme temperatures that can go from -40°C at cruising altitude up to 200°C during takeoff and landing. Adding to that, they need to be able to withstand tens of thousands of pounds of downward force per wheel during landing, all without blowing out.

It’s not surprising that airplane wheels are designed to withstand such massive forces, especially when you consider the fact that they’re the only thing between an airplane and a runway at hundreds of miles per hour during landings. That’s why airplane makers must ensure that the wheels can withstand these immense loads, temperatures, and stresses.

This is why most airlines use wheels that are made of high-quality, lightweight materials like aluminum or titanium. They are then mounted on the aircraft’s landing gear and connected to the airplane brakes and control systems. Having the right number of wheels is crucial for the safe operation of airplanes during takeoff, landing, and taxiing on the runway.

David Sunnyside
Co-founder of Urban Splatter • Digital Marketer • Engineer • Meditator
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