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Ever Wondered Why Most Commercial Airplanes Are Coloured In White? Here Are The Reasons

Those elegant white metallic birds tearing the skies and defying all odds to soar thousands and thousands of feet over the earth; watching an aeroplane fly is certainly a sight worth watching. But have you ever wondered why are all of them painted white? Why aren’t they painted with different colours like other vehicles, or maybe even adorned with some art?

Today, Wonderful Engineering will reveal the reasons:


1. The science of radiation: 

Pic Credits: netdna

It is well known that black colour absorbs almost all of the radiation, and its opposite, white reflects almost all of it. So to make the plane thermally efficient, and to spend less money on air conditioning the hull, the plane is covered in white so that it reflects most of the radiation.


2. Cut down the cost of painting: 

Pic Credits: licdn

If you ever had to get your car painted, even from a small portion, you know how much it costs. Take that and add in the additional paint expenses of the plane, along with the obvious mammoth square footage, and you have a whole lot of money down the drain. Not to mention the time and manpower required to paint and then maintain that decorative paint on the plane. Painting it in elegant and durable white colour seems a better option.


3. Cut down the slack:

Pic Credits: motherjones

Painting the fuselage with decorative plane might make it quite a spectacle, but the customers would be pretty pissed if they knew they have to pay an extra $100 or so just because the plane now consumes more fuel due to its heavier weight. Better to keep it simple, light and more fuel efficient.

4. White plane is easier to inspect for cracks and dents on the fuselage:

Pic Credits: Wonderful Engineering

Spotting and anticipating problems in the fuselage like cracks, dents rust, etc. is easier to spot on a white background rather than some other contrasting colour.

5. Coloured planes have lower resale value. 

Pic Credits: eduardoferreiraribeiro

For the reasons above, almost all of the commercial airline companies want their planes covered in white, not in anything else. Thus blue, green, red, etc. planes generally have a lower resale value.

Do you know any other reasons for painting an aeroplane white? Let us know in the comments’ section below!

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