Developed for the USAF as reconnaissance aircraft more than 30 years ago, SR-71s are still the world's fastest and highest-flying production aircraft.
Armed Forces Day
On August 31, 1949, Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson announced the creation of an Armed Forces Day to replace separate Army, Navy and Air Force Days.
THE PLANES THAT ALMOST WERE
In the spring of 1971, big things were in the air for the 190th. The Pentagon announced that the Squadron was to be reequipped, this time to be with RF-4 "Phantom" jets.
National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day
National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, which is observed annually on December 7, is a holiday to remember and honor all those who died in the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.
CUBAN MISSILE CRISIS
The movie Thirteen Days explains just how threatened the United States was with nuclear war during the fall of 1962. Most Americans know very little about this impending danger that could have destroyed a major portion of our population.
Attack on Pearl Harbor
The Attack on Pearl Harbor was a surprise aerial attack largely on Pearl Harbor, Oahu, Hawaii, and the USA launched by the 1st Air Fleet of the Imperial Japanese Navy of the task force Carrier Striking Task Force on the morning of Sunday, December 7, 1941
The P-26A marked a significant step in the evolution of fighter aircraft -- it became the U.S. Army Air Corps' first all-metal monoplane fighter in regular service.
Apollo 12 was the sixth manned flight in the Apollo program and the second to land on the Moon. The mission was commanded by Charles "Pete" Conrad. It was launched on November 14, 1969, four months after Apollo 11.
Aerial refueling allows aircraft engines to receive fuel while in flight and today is common for many large air forces. It is the equivalent of refueling your car by connecting it to a tanker truck while driving down the highway at high speed.
Air Combat Command History
The creation of Air Combat Command (ACC) on 1 June 1992 resulted in part from dramatic changes in the international arena.
The Boeing P-12 or F4B was an American pursuit aircraft that was operated by the United States Army Air Corps and United States Navy.
Before World War II, in 1939, jet engines existed only as laboratory items for test. But at the end of the war, in 1945, it was clear that the future of aviation lay with jets. The new engines gave great power and thrust, but were compact in size. They also were simple in their overall layout.
Air Force History Overview
Early Years On Aug. 1, 1907, the U.S. Army Signal Corps established a small Aeronautical Division to take "charge of all matters pertaining to military ballooning, air machines and all kindred subjects.
Joseph C. McConnell
Joseph Christopher McConnell, Jr. (30 January 1922 - 25 August 1954) was the top American ace during the Korean War. A native of Dover, New Hampshire, Captain McConnell shot down 16 Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15s while flying F-86 Sabres with the U.S. Air Force.
American Aircraft Manufacturing Between the Wars
At the end of World War I, the aircraft industry took a sharp nosedive. Several wartime aircraft companies closed their doors and others barely survived. One year after the Armistice, 90 percent of wartime production capacity had been eliminated.
The American Aerospace Industry During World War II
The U.S. aircraft industry experienced huge growth during World War II. Moreover, its achievements, some claim, were as important to Allied victory as the military successes on the battlefield. American industry was fortunate in that it could operate without threat of air bombardment or other military damage to factories and without shortages of critical materials. And the industry used those advantages fully.
Final Flight of the X-15 Left a Legacy of Success
If residents of Western Nevada had looked high up in the sky on the morning of Oct. 24, 1968, they might have seen the sun glinting off the fuselage of a silver, eight-engine NB-52A Stratofortress as it made a graceful turn over Smith Ranch Dry Lake.
The Concorde Supersonic Transport
The Concorde supersonic airliner, built jointly by France and Great Britain, to this day remains the only such supersonic plane to operate successfully in commercial service and has earned its prominent place in aeronautical history.
Airmail Pilots: Firsts and Legends
Early airmail flight was dangerous and its pilots needed to have a considerable amount of the daredevil in them to brave the risks. But whether these pioneers exhibited extraordinary (or perhaps foolhardy) bravery or were merely doing their job, the careers of the members of this "suicide club" were like those of few others.
Boeing's Metal Monoplanes of the 1930s
By the end of the 1920s, biplanes were becoming obsolete and manufacturers turned to building all-metal monoplanes. Boeing Aircraft led this technological revolution with welded steel tubing for fuselage structure. This soon became standard in the industry until it was replaced by monocoque sheet metal structures in the mid-1930s.
The Earliest Overseas Aviation Companies: England, France, Germany, and Russia
The American and European aviation industries began to develop within a few years of each other, but Europe took the first formal steps to establish dedicated aircraft companies in the early decades of the 20th century. During this time, there was a shift from aircraft designers, builders, and pilots all being the same people to having entrepreneurs who ran the business and built the planes and others who flew them.
A Study of the Atomic Bomb and World War II
While Americans and Japanese alike expected the war to end only after a bloody invasion of Japan, the U. S. government was readying a secret weapon that would dramatically affect the war's outcome.
Sputnik and the Crisis That Followed
Sputnik (translated as “satellite” or “traveling companion of the Earth”), trailing four metal antennas, passed through the skies over the launch site confirming that a human-made moon was now orbiting the Earth. The “Space Age” had begun.
The Tuskegee Airmen
The Tuskegee Airmen is a 1995 HBO television movie based on the exploits of an actual groundbreaking unit, the first African American combat pilots in the United States Army Air Force, that fought in World War II.
The Culver Cadet was an American two-seat light monoplane aircraft, and later a radio-controlled drone, produced by the Culver Aircraft Company.
At 1410 on 5 December 1945, five TBM Avengers comprising Flight 19 rose into the sunny sky above NAS Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Turning east the formation headed out over the Atlantic on the first leg of a routine exercise from which neither the 14 men of Flight 19 nor the 13-man crew of a PBM Mariner sent out to search for them were ever to return.
HISTORY OF THE ORDER OF DAEDALIANS
When war broke out in Europe in 1914, the airplane was hardly more than a dangerous plaything employed at fairs and circuses. Its potential was regarded lightly, when not contemptuously dismissed.
The Loss Of Flight 19
At about 2:10 p.m. on the afternoon of 5 December 1945, Flight 19, consisting of five TBM Avenger Torpedo Bombers departed from the U. S. Naval Air Station, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on an authorized advanced overwater navigational training flight.
"A Tradition of Heroes"
On August 31, 1949, Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson announced the creation of an Armed Forces Day to replace separate Army, Navy and Air Force Days.
U.S. AIR FORCE TEST PILOT SCHOOL HISTORY
The fundamental key to success in aerospace flight test and evaluation is the individual member of the flight test team: the flight test pilot, of course, but nowadays the trained flight test engineer and navigator as well.
Boeing F-86 Sabre Jet
The first swept-wing airplane in the U.S. fighter inventory, the F-86 scored consistent victories over Russian-built MiG fighters during the Korean War, accounting for a final ratio of 10-to-1.
The Aircraft Carrier
In the second half of the 20th century, the aircraft carrier became a symbol of the United States’ position as a superpower.
Air Power and World War II in the Pacific
In 1940, Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto of Japan’s Imperial Navy informed his government that if Japan went to war, he would "guarantee to put up a tough fight for the first six months, but I have absolutely no confidence as to what might happen if it went on for two or three years."
As pilot of one of the most famous flights of WW II, which brought about a quicker surrender from the enemy and a reduction in the loss of Allied lives, and for his leadership and skill with both airplanes and people in times of stress, Paul W. Tibbets, Jr. is enshrined with honor into the National Aviation Hall of Fame
General Aviation - An Overview
Perhaps the best way to define general aviation is to begin by listing what it is not. General aviation is not military aviation and it is not scheduled commercial aviation. To a great extent, all other uses of aviation in the United States fall into the category of general aviation.
Boeing's Post-War Commercial Aviation Activities
When World War II ended in August 1945, the U.S. government cancelled most orders for bomber aircraft, which had been a mainstay of the aircraft industry. Total industry production dropped from 96,000 airplanes in 1944 to 1,330 military aircraft in 1946.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) succeeded the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) as the U.S. government agency most responsible for advancing flight-related technology.
Marta Bohn-Meyer: NASA Flight Researcher
When NASA received three SR-71s from the Air Force in 1990, Bohn-Meyer's expertise and F-104 experience made her an easy choice for one of two flight engineer slots for the aircraft.
Jimmy Doolittle – Aviation Star
Jimmy Doolittle excelled at every aspect of aviation. A daredevil pilot, aeronautical engineer, combat leader, and record-holder, Doolittle was a multi-talented pioneer.
Throughout his career, Yeager displayed distinguished courage and performed several extraordinarily brave deeds.
Walter Schirra, 1923-2007
Wally Schirra, the only astronaut to fly in the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo programs, has died. He was 84 years old.
Lockheed's Early Years, 1912-1940
The Lockheed Company, one of the giants in the modern aerospace industry, began in 1912 when the Loughead brothers, Allan and Malcolm, formed the Alco Hydro-Aeroplane Company in San Francisco.
The Beechcraft Bonanza
Sporting a distinctive V-shaped or “butterfly” tail, the Beechcraft Bonanza set the standard for the stylish yet well-equipped aircraft for the private pilot, albeit one who could afford to fly in relative luxury.
History of the United States Air Force
The United States Air Force became a separate military service on September 18, 1947, with the implementation of the National Security Act of 1947. The Act created the United States Department of Defense, which was composed of three branches, the Army, Navy and a newly created Air Force.
The Cessna Citation is a marketing name used by Cessna for its lines of business jets. Rather than one particular model of aircraft, the name applies to several "families" of turbofan-powered aircraft which have been produced over the years.
The Boeing B-29 Superfortress was a four-engine heavy bomber propeller aircraft flown by the United States Army Air Forces in World War II and other military organizations afterwards.
The Korean War
A unique aspect of the Korean War was the Pacific Airlift, the longest aerial supply line in history.
Aerospace Power and the Cold War
For almost 50 years, beginning soon after the end of World War II, the United States and the Soviet Union have prepared for war. Fortunately, none was declared and no shot was ever fired.
Beryl Arthur Erickson, Test Pilot
As always, Beryl Erickson, the first pilot of the B-36 Peacemaker and the B-58 Hustler (among other aircraft), is well prepared. He has carefully assembled a half dozen or so stacks of photographs on two couches in his living room.
Test pilots are aviators who fly new and modified aircraft in specific maneuvers, allowing the results to be measured and the design to be evaluated.
National Museum of the United States Air Force
The National Museum of the United States Air Force (formerly the United States Air Force Museum) is the official national museum of the United States Air Force and is located at Wright-Patterson AFB, east of Dayton, Ohio
The B-17 and B-29 in World War II
Throughout the 1930s, new bomber aircraft emerged in all countries. However, these older models were inadequate to carry out the theories of strategic bombing.
Veterans History Project
The Library of Congress and its American Folklife Center invite you to join us in the Veterans History Project.
Boeing's Post-War Military and Space Activities
When World War II ended in August 1945, the U.S. government canceled its orders for bomber aircraft. Boeing plants that had been producing the B-17 and B-29 bombers in large numbers shut down and soon, 30,000 Boeing employees were out of work.
General Aviation Aircraft
General aviation airplanes have historically served the public's needs for personal and business travel, as well as for sport and recreational aviation.
The Gulf War
The Gulf War was an anomaly compared to other wars of the second half of the 20th century.
The First U.S. Aircraft Manufacturing Companies
The second decade of the twentieth century marked the beginning of the U.S. aircraft industry. Growth was slow though and companies remained small until the United States started supporting the needs generated by World War I.
Astronauts and Cosmonauts
Dreams of spaceflight and its conquest are as old as humankind itself. These dreams were transformed into reality on April 12, 1961, when 27-year-old Flight Major Yuri Alexeyevich Gagarin of the Soviet Union became the first human to venture into space.
Harry Hillaker - Father of the F-16
The F-16 introduced many successful technologies. Fly-by-wire and relaxed static stability gave the F-16 a quantum leap in air combat capability over other fighters when it was introduced and this technology still makes the aircraft an unmatched competitor today.
All eyes on the ground are fixated on the vintage World War II Stearman as it plummets from the
sky, spiraling downward toward certain disaster.
O-2 Observation Biplane
The O-2, produced for the U.S. Army Air Service, was the first of a series that remained in production for nine years.
The Boeing B-29 Superfortress was a four-engine heavy bomber propeller aircraft flown by the United States Army Air Forces and other military organizations.
Mooney Aircraft Corporation
Aircraft designer Albert W. Mooney founded the company that bears his name, not once but twice, with vastly different levels of success.
Boeing History: The Model 40A
The model 40a was the first Boeing airplane to carry passengers, with room for two people in a tiny cabin, as well as cargo space for mail.
Boeing History: The Model 80
In 1928, Boeing introduced America's first airliner designed specifically for passenger comfort and convenience.
Boeing Model P-12/F4B
Early in 1928, Boeing built two new fighter biplanes using bolted aluminum tubing for the fuselage's inside structure.
Boeing History: Defining the Future of Flight
In January 2000, The Boeing Company purchased Hughes Electronics Corporation’s space and communications business and its related operations, originators of the Surveyor spacecraft and satellites 376, 601 and 702.
Boeing Model C Seaplane
The Model C training seaplane was the first "all-Boeing" design and the company's first financial success.
Boeing Model B-1
The B-1 was a "pusher-style" flying boat, with its engine at the rear.
Boeing History: Metal Monoplanes
After Charles "Lucky" Lindbergh made the first solo nonstop trans-Atlantic flight from New York to Paris in a Ryan monoplane in 1927, there was a tremendous surge of interest in aviation.
Boeing History: Beginnings - 1903-1938
In 1903, two events launched the history of modern aviation. The Wright brothers made their first flight at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, and William Boeing, born Oct. 1, 1881, in Detroit, Michigan, left Yale engineering college for the West Coast.
Boeing History: B-47 Stratojet
The B-47 was the country’s first swept-wing multi-engine bomber. It represented a milestone in aviation history, and a revolution in aircraft design.
Boeing History: B-52 Stratofortress
By the 21st century, the B-52 was in its fifth decade of operational service. The eight-engine, 390,000-pound jet was the country’s first long-range, swept-wing heavy bomber.
War created whirlwind in Wichita
One magazine at the time likened it to a storm sweeping across the Kansas Plains and into Wichita - "a $62 million tornado in a town of 120,000."
Days of glory
Former World War II fighter pilot keeps his memories on display
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