AidSpace Blog

Category Archives: Aviation

Solar Impulse: Rhyming with the Past, Looking to the Future

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In 1911, the first airplane to fly across the United States completed the more than 4,000-mile journey over 49 days, in 82 hours flying time, at an average speed of 51.5 miles per hour. It was an extraordinary aviation milestone in its day. Just eight years after the Wright brothers inaugurated the aerial age with   …Continue Reading


American Military Aviation in the Interwar Years and After: Some Historical Reappraisals

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In 1987, the historian Michael S. Sherry published a groundbreaking and controversial book titled The Rise of American Air Power: The Creation of Armageddon (Yale UP, 1987). Sherry in effect reinterpreted the history of American air power in a way that was more contextually based and fiercely critical. The result was not to every military   …Continue Reading


Solar Impulse

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What flies using power from the Sun, at the speed of an ultralight, on wings longer than a Boeing 777 airliner? Answer: Solar Impulse! A team of Swiss entrepreneurs, engineers, pilots, and enthusiasts began to design the Solar Impulse in 2003 with the goal to demonstrate flying day-and-night powered only by the electricity that more   …Continue Reading


Sea-Air Operations Gallery

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When Secretary of the Navy William J. Middendorf II commissioned the USS Smithsonian, CVM-76, on June 28, 1976, he announced in authentic navy parlance that “the floors are now decks, walls are bulkheads and stairs are ladders. Welcome Aboard!” Visitors to the gallery may not realize that exhibits artisans built the gallery using the decks,   …Continue Reading


The Flight Claims of Gustave Whitehead

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Gustave Whitehead is back in the news. Whitehead (1874-1927), a native of Leutershausen, Bavaria, who immigrated to the United States, probably in 1894, claimed to have made a sustained powered flight in a heavier-than-air machine on August  14, 1901, two years before the Wright brothers. He further claimed that he had made additional flights of   …Continue Reading