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Flight Technology

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Aviation History Book Review: Northrop’s Night Hunter

    Northrop’s Night Hunter: P-61 Black Widow by Jeff Kolln, Specialty Press, North Branch, Minn., 2009, $39.95. Unquestionably the finest Allied night fighter of World War II, the Northrop P-61 Black Widow entered service in 1944 and served...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Aviation History Book Review: DC-3- A Legend in Her Time

    DC-3: A Legend in Her Time, A 75th Anniversary Photographic Tribute  by Bruce McAllister, Roundup Press, Boulder, Colo., 2010, $49.95.  It has been said that the Douglas DC-3 transport helped lift America out of the Depression...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Homebuilt Visionary

    Long before the kitplane craze, Bernard Pietenpol designed airplanes that average consumers could build and fly themselves. About 80 years ago a group of aviation enthusiasts concluded that the “big guys” had cornered the market on...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    The Sabre’s Cutting Edge

    Napier’s temperamental 24-cylinder gem was one of the most innovative engines of its time. Enigmatic, charismatic and, yes, a pain in the rear are just some of the descriptions that could be applied to the Napier Sabre, surely the most...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Battle With the Air

    After establishing a new flight record over Lake Erie in 1910, Glenn Curtiss nearly came to grief on his return trip to Cleveland. Thousands of Clevelanders watched as Glenn Hammond Curtiss paced the Euclid Beach Park pier on the morning...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Built for Speed: The Napier-Heston T.5

    Britain hoped to take the airspeed record back from Germany with the Napier-Heston T.5, but it literally fell flat on its first flight. In 1935 the British engine manufacturer D. Napier and Son came out with an extremely advanced, hugely...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Aviation History Book Review: Chinese Aircraft

    Chinese Aircraft: China’s Aviation Industry Since 1951 by Yefim Gordon and Dmitriy Komissarov, Hikoki Productions Ltd., Manchester, UK, distributed by Specialty Press, North Branch, Minn., 2009, $56.95.  China’s aircraft industry...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Aviation History Book Review: The B-45 Tornado

    The B-45 Tornado: An Operational History of the First American Jet Bomber by John C. Fredriksen, McFarland & Company, Jefferson, N.C., 2009, $45. The B-45 Tornado is the first comprehensive history of a shamefully neglected American...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    ‘Be Quick, Be Quiet and Be on Time’

    Lockheed genius Kelly Johnson’s words summed up the philosophy behind several of history’s most innovative airplanes. Kelly Johnson—his mother named him Clarence, but that wasn’t his fault—owes to one man much of his legendary...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Valkyrie’s Little Brother

    Soaring development costs and evolving air defense requirements killed North American’s innovative F-108 Rapier before it got off the ground. Before the missile age, when nuclear deterrence depended solely on aircraft, speed meant...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Rare Jenny Takes Wing

    A 1917 Curtiss JN-4D is the centerpiece of an Oregon museum’s collection of flying antiques. Visitors to the Columbia River Gorge area might be surprised to find a vast 95,000-square-foot aviation museum tucked away on the outskirts of...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Style Over Substance

    Lockheed’s XF-90 embodied the rakish appearance of an early jet fighter, but its sleek exterior hid a host of shortcomings. Created by the famous Lockheed “Skunk Works” and heavily publicized as the U.S. Air Force’s next fighter,...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    American Flying Boats and Amphibious Aircraft

    American Flying Boats and Amphibious Aircraft: An Illustrated History by E.R. Johnson, McFarland, Jefferson, N.C., 2010, $49.95. E.R. Johnson’s latest book reflects a modern and vastly improved version of the technique James Fahey...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    The Great Transcontinental Air Race

    Belvin Maynard’s 1919 victory inspired aviators across America—and made a hero of the ‘Flying Parson’. Late in the morning on October 16, 1919, a de Havilland DH-4 dropped from the clouds and touched down silently in a pasture near...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Thunderscreech!

    The Republic XF-84H turboprop was so loud, ground crew were physically sickened by its noise. Early jet fighters accelerated slowly and required long takeoff runs, and if a pilot needed to pour on the gas to correct a bad approach or make...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    Myth of the Zero

    Mitsubishi’s legendary A6M ran circles around opposing fighters early in World War II, but by 1945 its odds of surviving a dogfight were close to zero. Has there ever been a warplane as mythic as the Mitsubishi Zero? Legend, mystery,...