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Is Aircraft Singular or Plural? What’s the Plural of Aircraft?

Aircraft is the same in both its singular and plural noun form. Both are aircraft.

Aircraft. Image by VQ.
Aircraft. Image by VQ.



What’s the plural of aircraft?  

"Aircraft", plural, in sentence examples.

Aircraft is the same in both its singular and plural noun form.

What’s the singular of aircraft?

The singular of aircraft is aircraft; the plural of aircraft is also just aircraft.  

What’s an aircraft?  

Aircraft are a “craft or vessel which navigates through the air.” Essentially, aircraft are any flying vehicle that support themselves through the air.

Compound words: aircraft

A compound word is a word that’s made up of two or more separate words in English. Take the word mailbox: mail + box. This is extremely common in English, and as you’ll see from the following chart, we love our compound words:

Compound words chart.



Nouns with one form

Aircraft irregular as a plural noun in English since it doesn’t end in -s/-es, which is the suffix that regular plural noun forms take. This is why aircraft plural is often mistaken for aircrafts, despite it being simply aircraft (as a plural.)  

Aircraft are not the only irregular English plural noun that remain the same in both singular and plural forms. Beer, deer, moose, shrimp, all stay the same in both their singular and plural noun forms. While this sounds counterintuitive, and possibly discombobulating, in most cases, it’s pretty straightforward to tell whether what’s mentioned is plural or singular.

Irregular nouns with one form.
Nouns with one form. By Gflex on Canva.

In the case of aircraft: it’s safe to assume that if it’s mentioned at, say, an airport, it’s probably referring to more than one aircraft. If what’s being referenced are aircraft in-flight, then chances are it’s either one or two aircraft (unless referring to a war-time setting.) For other plural nouns that stay the same (and are irregular), such as fish, salmon, shrimp, trout, and moose. Though it sounds difficult to tell whether it a noun is singular or plural if there is no evident change in the word itself, it’s actually quite intuitive.  

Examples of aircraft in sentences

1. Common examples of aircraft include airplanes, helicopters, airships (including blimps), gliders, paramotors, and hot air balloons.

2. Early flying machines include all forms of aircraft studied or constructed before the development of the modern aeroplane by 1910.

3. The human activity that surrounds aircraft is called aviation.

4. The forerunner of the fixed-wing aircraft is the kite.

5. Heavier-than-air aircraft, such as airplanes, must find some way to push air or gas downwards so that a reaction occurs (by Newton’s laws of motion) to push the aircraft upwards.

Synonyms for aircraft

  • chopper
  • helicopter
  • blimp
  • zeppelin
  • airliner
  • jet
  • flying machine
  • airplane
  • plane
  • airship

Origin of the word aircraft

The first known use of the word aircraft as a compound, meaning “craft or vessel which navigates through the air,” was in 1850. According to etymonline, aircraft from air (n.1) + craft (n.) written as ‘air-craft’ was first seen in the writings of John Wise. The original reference was to an air balloon.

etymonline, aircraft.
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Sources  

  1. Example sentences of aircraft from Wikipedia.
  2. Origin of aircraft
  3. Aircraft synonyms


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