Gerry Anderson Encyclopedia
Thunderbird 2
Type Heavy Transporter
Appearances Thunderbirds
Pilot Virgil Tracy

Thunderbird 2 is the prime heavy-transporter aircraft for International Rescue in the series Thunderbirds.


Thunderbird 2 was constructed sometime in the year leading up to 2025 or 2064. Details about its construction are top- secret, and thus have never been officially confirmed - other than that Brains designed and headed the project. Its function as a transporter is to move large or otherwise unconventional equipment across long distances.

The main functional positive to TB2's design is the use of special containers called Pods. Through the use of these pods, TB2's pilot, Virgil Tracy, can readily pick up and deploy any combination of vehicles or equipment for any situation needed. These are held in place in the centre via magnetic locks - and, when secured, complete the aerodynamic profile of the vehicle.

Technical data

  • Type: Hypersonic Transporter
  • Designer: Brains
  • Built: 2024 or 2063
  • Destroyed: 2028 or 2067 (rebuilt after)


  • Length: 250 feet
  • Wing span: 180 feet
  • Height: 60 feet
  • Unladen: 406 tons
  • Pay load: 100 tons


  • Power source: Atomic fusion reactor
  • Engines: 2 variable-cycle gas turbine engines and 4 vertical take-off fan jets.


  • Max altitude 100,000 feet
  • Max Speed: Mach 7 (5,000 mph)
  • Cruising speed: 2,000 mph
  • Range: Unlimited

Crew and Accommodation

Onboard Equipment

  • Four-person heat-proof rescue cage.
  • Electro-magnetic grabs.
  • Hauser cable rocket-launcher.


Thunderbird 2 is a two-part craft, consisting of a main superstructure and a pod that, when complete, gives it full integrity and stability.


The frame incorporates the cockpit, wings, fuel, stilts and, at the rear, the engines and spoiler, which aid lift and stability. The craft is capable of vertical take-off and landing, and therefore requires no runway. Hydraulic stilts enable the craft to lift clear of the pods.


A pod, which is the hold of the ship, also has undercarriage which enables the aircraft to reach the launch pad. Pods have a vast capacity for storing the rescue equipment and machines. Each one has a unique function.

  • Pod 1 contains equipment for firefighting and urban rescues.
  • Pod 2 contains the Magnetic grabs used to lift vehicles out of dangerous places.
  • Pod 3 contains equipment for rescues where speed is required.
  • Pod 4 is the main container of Thunderbird 4 and, as such, is fitted with a ramp to let the submarine down to the water.
  • Pod 5 contains a laboratory which Brains can use to figure out the best course of action for the rescue.
  • Pod 6 is a reserve pod containing any equipment for specialist rescues.

They are stored in the same hangar ready for use and easy loading.

Hangar and Launch Ramp

TB 2 is kept ready for action on Tracy Island in a hangar hidden behind a false rock face. After lowering from its stilts onto the pod selected for the mission, the craft then is propelled to the launch pad which tilts, enabling the craft to be deployed with maximum expediency.

Launch Sequence

Main article: Thunderbird 2 Launch Sequence



  • Thunderbird 2 is a prime example of the collaborative art designs produced by Derek Meddings and Mike Trim. Meddings handed the design over to Trim because he wasn't happy with how the nose of the craft was turning out. Thus, the entire front of Thunderbird 2 came from the pen of Mike Trim.
  • The original Dinky toy of Thunderbird 2 was changed in colour from green to metallic blue halfway through production because it was believed green wasn't a futuristic colour.
  • In The Simpsons episode 'In Marge we trust', during the Mr. Sparkle commercial, a silver Thunderbird 2 can be seen in the background amongst the toys.


Thunderbird 2 on Thunderbirds Wiki:

Thunderbirds logo.png

International Rescue: Jeff TracyScott TracyVirgil TracyAlan TracyGordon TracyJohn TracyBrainsTin-Tin KyranoLady Penelope Creighton-WardAloysius Parker
Others: Lucille TracyKyranoGrandma TracyThe Hood

TV Series Episodes:
Season 1
Trapped In The SkyPit of PerilThe Perils Of PenelopeTerror In New York CityEdge Of ImpactDay Of Disaster30 Minutes After NoonDesperate IntruderEnd Of The RoadThe UninvitedSun ProbeOperation Crash-DiveThe Mighty AtomCity of FireThe ImpostorsThe Man From MI.5Cry WolfDanger at Ocean DeepMove - And You're DeadThe Duchess AssignmentBrink Of DisasterAttack of the Alligators!Martian InvasionThe Cham-ChamSecurity Hazard
Season 2
Atlantic InfernoPath of DestructionAlias Mr. HackenbackerLord Parker's 'OlidayRicochetGive Or Take A Million

Thunderbirds Are GoThunderbird 6

Audio Adventures:
Introducing ThunderbirdsF.A.B.The Stately Homes Robberies

Young CorgiThe Vault

Tracy IslandCreighton-Ward Mansion

Thunderbird 1Thunderbird 2 (Pod Vehicles: MoleFireflyDOMOElevator CarsTransmitter TruckRecovery VehiclesMonobrakeExcavatorMobile CraneFire TruckLaser CutterThunderizerNeutralizer TractorJet-Air TransporterFire TenderYellow Trailer Truck | Red and Black TruckRed Curved Vehicle) • Thunderbird 3Thunderbird 4Thunderbird 5Thunderbird 6
Other Craft and Vehicles