Aircraft vs. Helicopter

Difference Between Aircraft And Helicopter


Aircraft, any machine or device capable of atmospheric flight. Included in this category is a remarkable array of devices—airplanes of every conceivable design, gliders, all manner of autogyros and helicopters, dirigibles, and hot-air balloons. Though air cushion vehicles might be considered aircraft because they hover just over the surface, they are generally categorized as ground vehicles. The wing-in-ground (or WIG) aircraft, a close relative of the air cushion vehicle, is usually considered an aircraft even though it is confined to near-surface flight.

The physical principles of flight are found in Aerodynamics. The design, construction, and operation of airplanes is found in Airplane. The development of the air travel and commerce is presented in Air Transportation and Airport. A history of flight is presented in Aviation and Air Warfare.


Helicopter, an aircraft in which lift, propulsive thrust, and control are produced by one or more sets of blades that rotate about a vertical axis. Lift is produced by the blades’ rotating independently of the aircraft’s forward speed, thus enabling the helicopter to hover motionless above the ground in still air or to climb and descend vertically. It can also fly in any direction, forward, sideward, or backward. The airplane, in contrast to the helicopter, has wing and fuselage fixed in relation to each other; consequently, the entire aircraft must be accelerated by a propeller or jet in a long ground run before sufficient lift is produced by the wing to enable the aircraft to become airborne.



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