Learn all about the history of bombers with these facts.
Subscribe today to Plane & Pilot magazine for industry news, reviews and much more delivered straight to you! First bombing: 1911, just eight years after the first flight by the Wrights Place: Libya (Italo-Turkish War) Payload: specially designed steel bombs containing picric acid. Casualties: Zero First purpose-built bombers: 1913, Bristol T.B. 8 (British) and the Caproni more »
Who was the first to bust the so-called sound barrier? It’s not an easy question to answer.
Subscribe today to Plane & Pilot magazine for industry news, reviews and much more delivered straight to you! The Mystery? Was Chuck Yeager the first to break the so-called “sound barrier?” Or did someone, or multiple people, beat him to the sonic boom? Well, this one isn’t so much a mystery as a debate. The Backstory more »
Are you an aviation enthusiast or pilot? Sign up for our newsletter, full of tips, reviews and more! The Theory The purported hazard of the downwind turn is one of the most controversial topics in all of aviation. Despite it being widely debated for many decades, it maintains a hold on the popular pilot imagination because more »
Cool and interesting facts about old planes, airports, and more.
Are you an aviation enthusiast or pilot? Sign up for our newsletter, full of tips, reviews and much more! Oldest flyable aircraft: Two Blériot XIs Year built: 1909 Located at: The Shuttleworth Collection (UK) and the Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome (U.S.) Oldest person to get a pilot’s license: Lt. Col. (ret.) James Collins Warren Age at which more »
New information has emerged in the 70-year-long search for Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan who disappeared in 1937. What does it really mean?
Are you an aviation enthusiast or pilot? Sign up for our newsletter, full of tips, reviews and more! The Mystery Does new photographic and forensic evidence answer the question of what happened to the pair of aviators, who disappeared in 1937 while on an around the world flight? The Backstory When we last wrote about the more »
Are you an aviation enthusiast or pilot? Sign up for our newsletter, full of tips, reviews and much more! Model 35 first flight: December 22, 1945 First delivery: 1947 Years before comparable Cessna (retractable gear, opposed engine, variable speed/adjustable prop, no-strut wing) appeared: 20 Construction: All-metal*, low-wing, monoplane *Note on construction: First few dozen Bonanzas had more »
Is there such a thing as “The Step?” And if so, what the heck is it?
The Question Is “The Step” just a myth? Or is there really something to it? The Backstory The subject of aerodynamics is a slippery one, with any one effect having many plausible-sounding explanations. One of the most vexing aerodynamic theories is the one that claims that certain airplanes can achieve faster cruise speeds when they more »
Check out these cool facts about the smallest things in aviation!
FAA minimum pilot height requirement: None Air Force pilot minimum height: 64 inches standing (5’4”) Shortest fixed-wing takeoff/landing: Bobby Breeden, 44 ft total Smallest multi-engine plane: Colomban Cri-Cri, 13 ft long, 16-ft wingspan Smallest single: Stits DS-1 Baby Bird, 6-ft wingspan, length 11 ft Smallest successful single (biplane): Stits SA-2A Baby Bird, 10 ft long, more »
Can we ever hope to solve the mystery of what happened to Amelia Earhart and her navigator, Fred Noonan?
The Mystery What was the real fate of pioneering pilot Amelia Earhart and her navigator, Fred Noonan, who disappeared on July 2, 1937, before reaching their Pacific Island destination on an attempted circumnavigation of the earth? The Backstory The mystery of what happened to Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan when their flight disappeared over the more »
Check out these cool facts about the biggest things in aviation!
Tallest height allowable for USAF pilots: 6’7” Heaviest powered paraglider pilot: 440 pounds Highest max takeoff weight: Antonov AN-225, 1.3 million pounds Greatest payload: AN-225, approximately 560,000 pounds Max takeoff weight, Boeing 787: about 502,000 pounds (no, it won’t fit inside the AN-225) Largest piston engine: Lycoming XR-7755, 36 cylinders, 7,750 cubic inches, dry weight, more »
The arguments, theories and facts about who was really the first to fly
The Backstory The popular story of who flew first is easy. It was the Wright Brothers, at Kill Devil Hills (Kitty Hawk), North Carolina, December 17, 1903. Orville was at the controls, and there are photographs of the plane, the Wright Flyer, on that very flight, which lasted 12 seconds and covered 120 feet. To more »
Check out these cool facts about women in aviation!
First woman to receive a pilot’s license, worldwide: Raymonde de Laroche, March 8, 1910 (France) Other aviation accomplishments: women’s altitude (12,869 feet, 15,700 feet) and distance (201 miles) records Death: killed co-piloting a test flight, July 18, 1919 First woman to receive a pilot’s license, U.S.: Harriet Quimby, August 1, 1911 Previous career: Journalist/writer Quimby’s more »
The myths, theories and facts about what keeps our flying machines up in the sky
The Myth While flying is something that creatures other than people have been doing for millions of years, we’ve only been actively exploring this realm for around 200 years and flying heavier than air machines for just over a century. But just as we know how gravity behaves and how to make good use of more »