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Aviation History Briefing


Spanish Stork

Stephan Wilkinson | Published: November 04, 2013 at 1:54 pm
Emilio Garcia-Conde's Fieseler Fi-156 "Storch" in Spanish Civil War Nationalist markings. [© Dirk Bende via Dave McDonald] For all its warlike mien and malevolent insignia, the Luftwaffe version of the Fieseler Fi-156 Storch (Stork) is somehow charming—all gawky gear legs, …

Morane-Saulnier Across the Med

Stephan Wilkinson | Published: November 04, 2013 at 1:54 pm
Flying a replica Morane-Saulnier G, Baptiste Salis arrives in Tunisia, having crossed the Mediterranean a century after Roland Garros first did so in a Morane-Saulnier H. [©2013 Demotix] It's a quirk of history that Louis Blériot's July 1909 crossing of …

Twin Beech Takes Top NAHI

Nicholas A. Veronico | Published: November 04, 2013 at 1:53 pm
From left: George Scott, Matt Walker and Mike Kvasnik with their award-winning 1946 Beechcraft D-18S. [Photo: Jim Dunn] Each year the National Aviation Heritage Invitational (NAHI) brings together some of America's best aircraft restorations. The 15th NAHI competition was held …

From da Vinci to Voyager

Published: November 04, 2013 at 1:53 pm
In 1505-06, Leonardo da Vinci envisioned a day when humans would fly like birds. [Biblioteca Reale, Turin; Inset, NASA] "One can draw an imaginary line from the genius of the Renaissance [Leonardo da Vinci], who dreamed about human flight by …

Douglas World Cruiser Redux

Stephan Wilkinson | Published: September 06, 2013 at 2:14 pm
Beginning next spring, the World Cruiser replica "Seattle II" is poised to reprise the 1924 round-the-world flight made by its forebear. [Image: Bob Dempster] Any American who can fog a mirror will know the name of the airplane and aviator …

A Tigercat Roars Again

Stephan Wilkinson | Published: September 06, 2013 at 2:13 pm
James Slattery's Grumman F7F-3N Tigercat made its debut at the EAA AirVenture this summer. [Image: Jim Koepnick] The only reason to restore a Grumman F7F Tigercat is because it's so beautiful. The airplane was rejected as a carrier-borne fighter, the …

Sikorsky Prize Goes to Canadians

Nan Siegel | Published: September 06, 2013 at 2:13 pm
Todd Reichert prepares to make history during the June 13 attempt to meet the Igor I. Sikorsky Human Powered Helicopter Challenge. [Image: Aerovelo] After 33 years, the Igor I. Sikorsky Human Powered Helicopter Challenge has at last been met. The …

Germany Retires Its Last Phantom

Published: September 06, 2013 at 2:13 pm
Germany's first McDonnell-Douglas F-4F Phantom II rests after its final flight. [Image: A. Dijksterhuis] On June 29 Germany became the latest—but by no means the last—country to retire its McDonnell-Douglas F-4F Phantom II fighter-bombers, after 41 years of service. Of …

'Flying Pencil' Recovery

Jon Guttman | Published: July 12, 2013 at 1:52 pm
On August 26, 1940, German Dornier Do-17Zs of Kampfgeschwader 3 on a mission to bomb British airfields at Hornchurch and Debden were attacked by Boulton-Paul Defiants of No. 264 Squadron, Royal Air Force. Escorting Messerschmitt Me-109Es came to their aid, …

Coast to Coast on Sun Power

Martin A. Bartels | Published: July 12, 2013 at 1:51 pm
The Solar Impulse soars over the Golden Gate Bridge during tests in April 2013. [Image: Solar Impulse] Imagine flying 900 miles at about 40 mph in a cockpit that has half the interior space of a Mini Cooper, with wings …

New Drone Designs Take Wing

Published: July 12, 2013 at 1:51 pm
Even as debate continues over the ethical use of drones in foreign and domestic airspace, two new drone designs are nearing full airworthiness.

Collier Goes to Curiosity

Published: May 03, 2013 at 2:14 pm
A remarkable self-portrait of the Curiousity rover on Mars. (© NASA/JPL Mars Science Laboratory/Curiousity Project) Every year the National Aeronautic Association awards the  Robert J. Collier Trophy for "the greatest achievement in aeronautics or astronautics in America, with respect to …

LAS Contract Dispute Continues

Martin A. Bartels | Published: May 03, 2013 at 2:13 pm
The A-29 Super Tucano by Embraer. (© Embraer)   A contract for 20 light air support (LAS) airplanes destined for Afghanistan's fledgling air force has stalled again, as Beechcraft Corporation filed suit against the U.S. Air Force to halt work on …

Return of the Avenger

Stephan Wilkinson | Published: March 04, 2013 at 11:12 am
The two-story high Grumman Avenger torpedo bomber has become a favorite warbird survivor.

Wings Remembered

Stephan Wilkinson | Published: March 04, 2013 at 11:12 am
A small Tennessee aviation museum holds a great collection of mostly World War II artifacts.

Martin Four-Oh-Four

Robert F. Dorr | Published: March 04, 2013 at 11:11 am
Among fanciers of the Martin 4-0-4 airliner were luminaries such as Frank Sinatra.
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