Alan RustAirlander 10 ready to launch

A giant airship which bears a rather unfortunate resemblance to a human bottom, is causing a stir on Twitter as it prepares to make its first proper test flight. The Airlander 10, built by British aerospace firm Hybrid Air Vehicles, is due to make its maiden flight in the spring after tests last year successfully showed it was capable of getting off the ground. Yet despite its impressive size and design, which is hoped to reinvigorate interest in using airships, the vehicle is attracting more attention for its appearance.

In one case a head-on image of the airship has been altered to include a picture of Kim Kardashian, who is famed for her derriere. The 300ft-long (93 metres) Airlander 10 was originally developed as part of a US Army project but was scrapped by military bosses. It is now being converted to provide business and leisure flights in a hangar in Cardington, Bedfordshire.

The vessel was filled with 1.3 million cubic feet of helium - enough to fill 15 Olympic-sized swimming pools - in a test run last October and now the engines and fins are being fitted ahead of next month's flight. The craft has already been tested with a successful hover test, with the hull being filled with helium and floated outside the aircraft hanger in November, but this will be the first test once the engines are successfully attached.

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