I happen to fly a lot on business. For me, personally, airplanes are one of the most amazing things that I see on a daily basis. When I get on a 747, I am boarding a gigantic vehicle capable of carrying 500 or 600 people. A 747 weighs up to 870,000 pounds at takeoff. Yet it rolls down the runway and, as though by magic, lifts itself into the air and can fly up to 7,000 nautical miles without stopping. It is truly incredible when you think about it!

If you have ever wondered what allows a 747 -- or any airplane for that matter -- to fly, then read on! In this edition of HowStuffWorks, we will walk through the theory of flight and talk about the different parts of a standard airplane, and then you can explore tons of links to learn even more!