He took off that day. It was 115 years ago, two years before the Wrights. Gustav Weisskopf had changed his name into Gustave Whitehead before building his aeroplane whose name was the « Condor », or number 21. Gustave was a German immigrant from Leutershausen in Bavaria, where a splendid museum https://www.weisskopf.de commemorates the feats of the brilliant inventor.
Two replicas of his plane #21 flew in 1986 in the U.S.A., and in 1997 in Germany. Several books have been written about Gustave Whitehead so far. Susan O’Dwyer Brinchman published the latest one last year. Her searching follows her father’s, Major William J. O’Dwyer, a retired U.S. Air Force Reserve officer who had found early Whitehead’s photos in an attic, in 1963, and researched Whitehead for the next 45 years, interviewing many witnesses. Susan worked with him during the later decades and recently, has found even more. She explains why Whitehead must have been the first in the world to perform a steerable, propelled without catapult, heavier-than-air flight. She shares an extensive FAQ and lots of resources on her website here: http://gustavewhitehead.info/gustave-whitehead-resources/ which are quite compelling. You can order her book Gustave Whitehead: First in Flight on Amazon or get a signed one by clicking on the cover here below:
Marcel Dassault was one of the greatest engineers in aviation history. He studied aeronautics in Paris, in the Higher Aeronautics and Mechanical Building School – now SUPAERO – in 1913, in the same entry as Mikhail Gurevitch who designed the MiG-1, MiG-15, and MiG-21. Dassault developed – as explained by Luc Berger, the Dassault-Aviation historian, in the video – a far better propeller for he had found out a lack of efficiency in the propellers of the Caudron G.3 aeroplanes. Dassault called his masterpiece « Hélice Éclair » (Lightning propeller). It is deemed to be the first line-production propeller, and the best one at that time. Georges GUYNEMER and Maxime LENOIR were among the first aces to use the Eclair on their SPAD VII and Nieuport. Dassault produced the MD 315 Flamant twin engine just after WWII. Then, came the first French fighter jet, the MD 450 Ouragan as early as 1949. Marcel Dassault used to say:
« For an airplane to fly well, it must be beautiful. »
And Dassault kept building so many graceful and sleek aircraft: Mystère, Etendard, Mirage, Falcon, and of course the magnificent Rafale. Dassault has even tested a high-tech drone called nEUROn. Contrary to the common belief, three quarters of Dassault-Aviation’s production is dedicated to civilian aviation and more particularly executive jets. With a strength of 12,000, and 8,000 aircraft delivered throughout the world since 1945, Dassault is a key market player on a global scale. Dassault-Aviation is 100 years old. Paris is to foster a huge show – La Conquête de l’Air – for this major event in one of its most splendid venues – le Grand palais – from April 9th till 14th, 2016. You can book here_>>>>> For further information about Dassault history, excellent gift idea, 2 books here:_>>>>>
Dassault développe de l’avionique et de nombreux avions depuis l’hélice Eclair en 1916. (voir l’interview en français en haut de l’article)
Marcel Dassault était un des plus grands ingénieurs de l’histoire de l’aviation. Il fit ses études d’aéronautique en 1913 à Paris à l’École supérieure d’aéronautique et de construction mécanique, l’ancêtre de SUPAERO, dans la même promotion que Mikhail Gourevitch, celui même qui concevait ensuite les MiG-1, MiG-15 et MiG-21. Dassault développa (commme l’explique Luc Berger, historien spécialiste de Dassault, dans la vidéo) une bien meilleure hélice car il avait découvert sur les Caudrons G.3 un manque d’efficacité à ce niveau. Marcel Dassault baptisa son chef d’oeuvre l’hélice Éclair et elle fût sans doute la première à être produite en chaîne à cette époque. Georges GUYNEMER et Maxime LENOIR furent parmi les premiers as à utiliser l’Éclair sur leur SPAD VII et Nieuport 17. Après la guerre de 39/45, Dassault produisait le bimoteur MD 315 Flamant. Ensuite, vint le premier chasseur français à réaction, le MD 450 Ouragan, dès 1949. Jadis, Marcel Dassault disait:
« Pour qu’un avion vole bien, il faut qu’il soit beau. »
Et Dassault poursuivit sa conception de tant d’avions aux lignes gracieuses et épurées: Mystère, Etendard, Mirage, Falcon, et bien sûr le magnifique Rafale. Dassault a même testé en 2012 un drone à la pointe de la technologie, le nEUROn. Contrairement aux idées reçues, les trois quarts de la productin de Dassault-Aviation’s production est tournée vers l’aviation civile et plus particulièrement les jets d’affaire. Dassault et ses 12 000 employés et qui a livré 8 000 avions depuis 1945 à travers le monde, est un acteur majeur du marché mondial.
Dassault-Aviation à l’occasion de ses 100 ans fait les choses en grand au coeur de Paris dans un show, La Conquête de l’Air, dans un de ses plus majestueux endroits, le Grand palais du 9 au 14 avril 2016. Vous pouvez réserver ici_>>>>> Pour plus d’information sur Dassault, en plus d’une excellente idée de cadeau, voici deux livres ici:_>>>>>
Feb 14, 2016 – The Dutch airport will be one hundred years old in September this year. It used to be a military airfield on a meadow surrounded by a few huts. It has become one of the major airports in the world. The video here below might have been used for an Air-English examination. Let us play with questions – number 1 – according to the video, when was Schipol airport completely destroyed? Number 2 – Could you quote two major improvements that happened in the 1980s? Watch the video:
Here are the answers:
Number 1: Schipol was completely destroyed during World War 2. (listen again at 00’19 »)
Number 2: As far as the 1980s are concerned, you have got the choice between (listen again at 00’47 »):
The airport apron was expanded;
The terminal became bigger;
The area was beautified;
In time, piers and railway connections were added.
What is more natural than looking back over major aviation innovations of the Great War today, the anniversary of the Armistice? Here is a very interesting video posted by the BBC on how the fighter pilots dealt with reconnaissance, bombing missions and dogfight techniques. Primitive flight controls are well explained as is the interest of performing missions with a triplane aircraft – three sets of wings are necessarily more narrow, providing the pilot with a better visual field.
From the flimsy Blériot XI to Sopwiths and Fokkers, the first aces developed early methods that are always taught in fighter schools even though beyond-visual-range air combat has taken over since. Major Charles Tricornot de Rose was considered by many as the father of air fighting as early as 1914. Then as shown in this video, the German ace Oswald Boelcke laid out a first set of rules for dogfighting called the Dicta Boelcke. Pilots’ life expectancy was not measured in years but in weeks.
Few people know that there was a major aerodrome near Paris more than a century ago. Though Louis Blériots’s Aeroparc contributed a lot to aviation history, it was demolished in 1970. Villagers, aviation fans and historians made a decision of renovating the remains of this aviation temple which. There used to be a splendid video reconstruction which unfotunately no longer exists.
For the 100th anniversary of the English Channel crossing by Louis Blériot, a well-documented publication was released in 2009 – « Buc à travers l’aviation« . A Mirage III R was given too, by SECAMIC company. This Dassault recce aircraft can be seen in Avenue Jean Casale between Buc and Toussus-le-Noble, France. The Buc citizens could proudly look back at their prestigious aviation past as Buc and Toussus-le-Noble airfields used to be an aviation history cradle.
Villagers and historians wanted to value their aeronautical heritage in 2012 and they made a decision of setting a renovation project of Blériot’s Aéroparc entrance which is located at the beginning of Guynemer Avenue. Many documents from archives allowed them to incentivize an accurate reconstruction. As the pictures show, the renovation works have already begun as of September 2, 2015.
At the same time, the statue erected to commemorate Jean Casale (1893-1923), WWI ace and Blériot’s test pilot et pilote d’essai aux établissements Blériot, will also be restored for it has been damaged by the effects of time. As far as the Mirage III R is concerned, it would also need a new coat of paint.
Louis Blériot won international renown as well as his presence at the very first Paris Air Show (Salon de l’Aéronautique which occurred at « Le Grand Palais » in Paris instead of Le Bourget) in late 1909 thanks to his Channel crossing on July 25, 1909. He had crossed the English Channel on his Blériot XI monoplane which is still exhibited at the Musée des Arts et Métiers. Accordingly, Blériot-Aéronautique received a lot of aeroplane orders since then. Louis Blériot wanted to open a flying school. He established his school near Paris, to the south of Versailles on Buc airfield in order to train pilots and test new flying machines. It was inaugurated on November 13th, 1912. The whole airfield and compound was called Aerodrome Louis Blériot.
There was a monumental gate before the main building which looked like a castle. It was the very heart of the school as well as a hotel for the student pilots and a restaurant. Hangars and grandstands were added so as to organise airshows. Many great aviators and aces landed and took off at Blériot’s Aérodrome such as Roland Garros, Maryse Bastié, Maxime Lenoir, Edmond Perreyon and the Swiss John Domenjoz. Célestin Adolphe Pégoud nicknamed « Le roi de l’air » – « King of the air » – was one of the first pilots looping the loop. Here is a video shot on September 21st, 1913 in front of a 200,000 attendance above Blériot’s aerodrome in Buc:
The airfield was very active during WW1 thanks to its SPADs, then in the 1920s. The downturn of the Aéroparc started when Louis Blériot passed away on August 2, 1936. Aéroparc Louis Blériot was occupied by the German troops during WWII and was bombed by the Allies several times in 1944. The Aéroparc facilities were given back to Blériot-Aéronautique but it was left in tatters. The movements stopped in 1966 and it was closed down in 1970 before being demolished a few years after. The remnants of the monumental gate were all that is left from this exceptional past. Therefore, the Aéroparc renovation aims at valuing this site’s aviation history heritage.