Of all the technological advances mankind has made through the years, manned flight is probably the most impressive. Since the first powered flight in 1903, we’ve come a long way with commercial airliners that can travel hundreds of miles in just a few hours to military aircraft that can move fast enough to break the sound barrier.
Most airplanes are fast, there’s no denying that. But these 12 take speed to a different level. We also included a few planes that are still at the prototype stage just to show you what the near future may hold for manned flight.
#12 F-15 Eagle
This plane was first designed back in 1967, and has built quite the reputation for itself ever since. Considered one of the most successful military aircraft of its time, the F-15 Eagle is expected to remain in service until 2025 or so. The plane costs nearly $30 million and can fly around the globe in around 15 hours with a top speed of 1650 mph.
#11 Mikoyan Ye-152
While there aren’t many Mikoyan Ye-152 models actually in existence, the ones were built are incredibly fast. These single engine planes were developed by the Soviet Union and were the fastest planes they ever created. The cost of these planes has never been disclosed. With a top speed of 1666 mph, this plane could circle the entire planet in around 15 hours.
#10 Mikoyan MiG-31 Foxhound
The Foxhound is a supersonic aircraft interceptor in Russia. This plane was first introduced in 1982 and is still in use in Russia and Kazakstan. The plane made various design sacrifices for higher speed, and it worked. This plane can fly around the world in less than 13.5 hours, with its top speed being over 1800 mph.
#9 XB-70 Valkyrie
While this plane was never actually used in service, it was a real thing. This six engine plane was built for a hypothetical nuclear strike back in the 1950s and was only flown in 1964 and 1969. This aircraft cost $750 million and could fly at an astonishing 2000 mph, getting it around the world in under 12.5 hours.
#8 Bell X-2 ‘Starbuster’
The Starbuster was a plane solely created to see how an aircraft would hold up in Mach 2 and 3. However, disaster struck on its final flight when the plane crashed, ending the program. This plane could travel at 2094 mph, could get around the globe in under 12 hours. It cost $64 million.