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45-foot Paper Airplane Soars Over Desert

March 23, 2012 by staff 

45-foot Paper Airplane Soars Over Desert, A 45-foot-long (14-meter-long) paper airplane successfully flew across the desert skies of Arizona — albeit briefly. The model, which has a 24-foot wingspan, could be the world’s largest paper plane, according to the Pima Air & Space Museum in Tucson, Ariz., which was responsible for the project.

Dubbed Arturo’s Desert Eagle after the inspiration behind the design — 12-year-old Arturo Valderamo — the 800-pound (363-kilogram) aircraft flew at 98 mph (158 kph) at an altitude of 2,703 feet (824 meters) after being towed into the sky by a helicopter Wednesday and then released.

“The paper airplane in flight rekindled the childhood creativity in all of us.”
- Pima Air & Space Museum executive director Yvonne Morris

The project began in January after the museum launched a contest for six- to 14-year-olds to see who could fold a paper plane and get it to fly the furthest.

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