Iron Maiden frontman Bruce Dickinson has invested in the world's longest aircraft.

The metal singer - also a qualified pilot - has provided $450,000 towards the development of the 91.4-metre-long airship called the HAV Airlander.

It’s being produced by British aeronautics company Hybrid Air Vehicles, and is 18.2 metres longer than the Boeing 747.

It is powered by four turbocharged V8 diesel engines, which can produce 350bhp and provide power for several propellers in the back.

The HAV Airlander's top speed is 100mph and it weighs 38 tonnes. It can also carry 50 tonnes of cargo and can stay airborne for 21 days, which is 50 times more than a helicopter can carry and 70% more efficient than a cargo plane.

As the plane comes in to land it uses a skids system which includes inflatable pneumatic tubes. This allows it to arrive on land, sand or water, without the need for an airstrip, making it capable of delivering goods for disaster areas or transporting heavy goods to oil companies.

Dickinson said of his investment: “I want to go on a non-stop flight around the world - twice.

“We'll fly over the Amazon at 20ft, over some of the world's greatest cities and stream the whole thing on the internet.”