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World’s Largest Model Airport – $5 million worth of youngster heaven


Knuffingen Model Airport featured in this article cost $4.8 million, contains 40,000 lights and 300 buildings and is the culmination of seven years work by the two obsessive Braun brothers, Frederik and Gerrit. It’s part of a huge model world installation in Hamburg called Miniatur Wunderland, which has taken half a million hours of work so far. Talk about a labour of love.


There are a huge number of cool things about the airport, but we’ll just mention one –  it’s interactive. Yep, visitors can press a button and trigger any of 11 programmed scenarios such as a fire and other emergencies. Totally awesome.

 Gerrit Braun and the model-making team have pushed the limits of model construction, with a large part of the exhibit custom-designed and built. It was not possible to use only ‘off-the-shelf’ parts and electronics, primarily because such components are not meant for continuous operation. Additionally, there is a lack of a large parts-base to support our scale of 1:87. Thus, for example, most of our 150 push-button action sequences are custom-created, as are our Car and Ship Navigation systems.

Nigel is the managing editor of the Red Ferret, as well as a freelance columnist for the Sunday Times newspaper in London. Loves tech and fancies himself as a bit of a futurist, but then don’t we all?

Nigel – who has written posts on The Red Ferret Journal.

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