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Plan Your Flight Carefully. How Many Planes are Flying Now?

Aviation Development

More than a century has passed since the first flight of the plane, in 1903. After that, aviation developed fast. The planes started taking passengers (from 1908), performing military tasks (1912), commercial flights (1919).

By and by, the flights were becoming more accessible and more frequent. In the 1970s, when the aircraft was flying in the sky, many people raised their heads to watch the flight, today the sight is quite routine. No wonder, since about 50,000 aircraft take off daily (according to Plane Finder data); so, the chances to see one above every hour or so are quite high.

With the development of aviation technologies, the need to track the planes became more acute. The aircraft had been affected by weather phenomena during flight, lost the connection, which often led to a plane crash. Meanwhile, the military also strived for controlling both own and enemy aircraft. So, the appliances aimed at detection of the planes in the sky (and later on the ground) were invented.

Tracking Technologies. From Radar Net to Plane Finder Live Flight Tracker

First aircraft trackers were serving the military goals of spotting the enemy’s aviation. England was the first one to establish an aviation radar net in 1939 to hold the air defense. The radar lines started to appear in many countries of the world.

The radars had been quite helpful. However, when the planes got closer to each other, the signal became irrelevant showing only a large detection spot. Transponder invention solved the issue.

Transponders sent out and received a digital code spotting the position of another transponder set onboard precisely. The data on latitude and longitude were later completed by altitude dimension (Mode A & C transponders).

Technology steamed ahead, and the transponders became more specific and diverse. Today the ADS-B transponders used in most commercial aircraft send multiple data including the information on the aircraft and its voyage, speed of flight, etc.

Based on several ground ADS-B receivers, an exact picture of multiple aircraft position can be drawn. This is how the Plane Finder live flight tracker had been founded.

So, How Much are They?

By some of the flight trackers data, there are no less than 8,000 aircraft simultaneously in the air each minute. This is the stats for the Christmas day when some of the airlines even don’t offer the flights. The number is a bit higher, as some of the military and old planes are not covered by ADS-B technology. For commercial aircraft, the highest number of flying planes the number as high as 20,000 planes. Such data is fixed for summer periods when many people fly on their vacations.

In average, there are about 12,000 aircraft performing the flight simultaneously. 25,000 airliners take off each day, though in June 2018 the record number of flights throughout the day has been fixed – 202,157 aircraft. It means that more than 100 mln of passengers were in the air that day. With rapid development of passenger aviation and routes, there are more records to come.

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