The 10 Longest Runways in the US

If you’ve ever flown on a plane, you know how important runways are. They’re the long strips of pavement where planes take off and land, and they need to be long enough to give the planes enough speed and space to do so safely. But how long is long enough? Well, that depends on a lot of things, like the type and size of the plane, the altitude and temperature of the place, and the wind and weather conditions. The longer the runway, the more options and security it offers for different kinds of flights.

The 10 Longest Runways in the US

In this article, we’re going to check out the 10 longest runways in the US, based on how many feet they measure. We’re also going to tell you a bit about each airport or air base that has these runways and what they’re used for.

1. Denver International Airport (DEN) – 16,001 feet

Denver International Airport (DEN) is a huge airport that’s super busy. It’s the fifth-busiest airport in the US and the 20th-busiest airport in the world. It covers an area of 53 square miles, which makes it the second-largest airport in the world by land area. It has six runways, and one of them is the longest in the US at 16,001 feet. This runway is called 16R/34L, but some people also call it “The Long One” because it’s so long. It can handle any kind of plane, even the giant Airbus A380 .

2. Southern California Logistics Airport (VCV) – 15,049 feet

Southern California Logistics Airport (VCV) is a public airport near Victorville, California. It used to be an air force base called George Air Force Base, but it closed down in 1992. Now it’s mainly used for aviation-related businesses, like fixing, storing, testing and training with planes. It has two runways, and one of them is the second-longest in the US at 15,049 feet. This runway is called 17/35, and it can deal with big cargo planes and military planes .

3. Edwards Air Force Base (EDW) – 15,023 feet

Edwards Air Force Base (EDW) is a military base in the Mojave Desert in California. It’s where a lot of historic flight tests have happened, like breaking the sound barrier and landing the space shuttle. The base has several runways, some of which are on Rogers Dry Lake, which is a natural lakebed that gives a lot of room for landing. The longest paved runway on the base is 15,023 feet long and is called 04L/22R .

4. Shuttle Landing Facility (TTS) – 15,000 feet

Shuttle Landing Facility (TTS) is a private airport on Merritt Island in Florida. It’s part of the Kennedy Space Center and was used for landing the space shuttle until it stopped flying in 2011. The airport has one runway that is 15,000 feet long and 300 feet wide, which makes it one of the longest and widest runways in the world. The runway also has a special coating that makes it less slippery and more durable .

5. Vandenberg Space Force Base (VBG) – 15,000 feet

Vandenberg Space Force Base (VBG) is a military base on the central coast of California. It’s one of the main places for launching military and commercial satellites into polar orbit. It also tests intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and other space-related missions. The base has two runways, one of which is 15,000 feet long and is called 12/30 .

6. John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) – 14,511 feet

John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) is the busiest international airport in North America and one of the busiest airports in the world. It’s a major hub for many airlines and connects flights to over 200 places around the world. It has four runways, and one of them is 14,511 feet long and is called 13R/31L. This runway is also known as “Bay Runway” and can handle big planes like the Boeing 747 and Airbus A380 .

7. McCarran International Airport (LAS) – 14,510 feet

McCarran International Airport (LAS) is the main airport for Las Vegas and the nearby area. It’s the ninth-busiest airport in the US and the 24th-busiest airport in the world. It has four runways, and one of them is 14,510 feet long and is called 07L/25R. This runway is the third-longest civilian runway in the US and can handle large planes like the Boeing 777 and Airbus A340 .

8. Eielson Air Force Base (EIL) – 14,507 feet

Eielson Air Force Base (EIL) is a military base near Fairbanks, Alaska. It hosts the 354th Fighter Wing and supports operations of the Alaska NORAD Region. The base has two runways, one of which is 14,507 feet long and is called 13/31. This runway is the longest runway in Alaska and can handle any kind of plane, including heavy bombers and cargo planes .

9. Naval Air Station Fallon (NFL) – 14,000 feet

Naval Air Station Fallon (NFL) is a military base near Fallon, Nevada. It hosts the Naval Aviation Warfighting Development Center, which provides advanced training for naval pilots and aircrew. The base has three runways, one of which is 14,000 feet long and is called 13R/31L. This runway is the longest runway that the Navy owns and can support various plane operations, including carrier landing practice .

10. Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) – 13,971 feet

Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) is the sixth-busiest airport in the US and the third-busiest airport in the world. It’s a major hub for many airlines and connects flights to over 200 places around the world. It has seven runways, one of which is 13,971 feet long and is called 10C/28C. This runway is the longest runway at ORD and can handle big planes like the Boeing 747 and Airbus A380 .

Conclusion

So there you have it, the 10 longest runways in the US and why they matter. These runways are at different airports and air bases across the country and can handle different kinds of planes, from commercial jets to military planes. These runways give flexibility and safety to the aviation industry and help with the economic and strategic interests of the US.

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