3D plane in flight in 3D Buildings layer

A sharp-eyed GEB reader named ‘Will’ has discovered something pretty cool. At the north end of the Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, the Netherlands’ main airport, there is a 3D model of an airplane coming in for a landing. The plane was modeled by ‘KG800‘. You can view the plane using this KML file . Be sure to have the “3D Buildings” layer turned on.

Plane in flight

As far as we know, this it the first 3D plane included in the main “3D Buildings” layer. However, there are been plenty of planes added via third-party KML files before. There was a 3D Plane Tracker we showed a few years ago, the Wirefly X Prize Cup Event, and even an aircraft carrier that you can use with the flight simulator mode.
For normal satellite imagery of airplanes, you can browse this collection of planes in flight, a Lancaster Bomber from a few years ago, or a U-2 Spyplane discovered earlier this year. If you still want more, Google Earth Hacks has nearly 300 planes in their “aircraft in flight” category, and more than 900 “aircraft on the ground“. You can even find tons of aircraft in Google StreetView: 121 in flight, or 283 on the ground.
All of that being said, it’s still really cool to see a built-in 3D model of a plane in Google Earth. If you find others, please let us know.
[UPDATE 26-OCT: GEB reader ‘Tom‘ just let us know that there are a few 3D planes parked at London Heathrow. I’ve created a KML file for you to check them out. Let us know if you find others.]
[UPDATE #2 26-OCT: GEB reader ‘Christoph’ pointed out that there’s a second plane at Schiphol that we missed. You can view it here ]

About Mickey Mellen

Mickey has been using Google Earth since it was released in 2005, and has created a variety of geo-related sites including Google Earth Hacks. He runs a web design firm in Marietta, GA, where he lives with his wife and two kids.


  1. Nice. There’s a 747 from KLM in 3D at Schiphol as well. Also note the bumpy terrain model of the taxi way…

  2. Funniest in my opinion is that the pictured 2-d plane misses the wing at the right side while it’s shadow is complete

  3. Slightly related: At the automatic generated 3D buildings for Copenhagen they also modelled a ship:
    It’s the Danish frigate “Peder Skram”, F352:
    They have also modelled some construction cranes as well:

  4. Paul van Dinther says:

    A real bad bad policy. I have complained to google repeatedly about dynamic objects being placed on the map in the 3D building layer. It causes real problems for applications that manipulate dynamic objects.
    I have that problem with a commercial cruise ship tour generator I work on where berths are taken by ships part of the 3D buildings layer.
    At the very least dynamic objects (Non buildings that move) should be on a separate layer so developers can turn them off.

  5. Not exactly a bad policy, but definitely a flawed way of adding 3D content. I’ve suggested to Google months ago (when they started adding non-building 3D content), that they should have a “3D Objects” layer with sub-layers like: “Buildings”, “Structures”, “Transportation”, “Vegetation (Trees)”, etc.
    That way you could turn off unwanted layers that would otherwise mess up your applications.

  6. i found two at Manaus Eduardo Gomes International Airport but i put my comment in planes in flight in google earth (revisited)

  7. some at a terminal at albuquerque sunport copy and paste albuquerque sunport and search on google earth

  8. As i tried to say before, cool image to stumble on. I didn’t care if the wing was missing, because I like seeing how people apply the 3D builder app.

  9. There’s a Concorde at Heathrow.

  10. it is quite funny that google earth have posted this on here. they must like the “KG800” airplane. i am surprised that it is included in the google earth 3D buildings package. i am not a regular reader of this website but would like to post comments and follow the news from now. i will try to track down the KG800 on my google earth. if anybody else finds another 3D plane then contact me on this webpage. thank you and good bye till tommorrow.

  11. I just found one coming in for landing at San Francisco

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