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Lighter than air[ edit ] LZ Hindenburg at Lakehurst Naval Air StationThe modern age of aviation began with the first untethered human lighter-than-air flight on November 21,of a hot air balloon designed by the Montgolfier brothers.
The practicality of balloons was limited because they could only travel downwind. It was immediately recognized that a steerable, or dirigibleballoon was required. Jean-Pierre Blanchard flew the first human-powered dirigible in and crossed the English Channel in one in Rigid airships became the first aircraft to transport passengers and cargo over great distances.
The best known aircraft of this type were manufactured by the German Zeppelin company. The most successful Zeppelin was the Graf Zeppelin. It flew over one million miles, including an around-the-world flight in August However, the dominance of the Zeppelins over the airplanes of that period, which had a range of only a few hundred miles, was diminishing as airplane design advanced.
The "Golden Age" of the airships ended on May 6, when the Hindenburg caught fire, killing 36 people. The cause of the Hindenburg accident was initially blamed on the use of hydrogen instead of Aviation information technology as the lift gas.
An internal investigation by the manufacturer revealed that the coating used in the material covering the frame was highly flammable and allowed static electricity to build up in the airship. Although there have been periodic initiatives to revive their use, airships have seen only niche application since that time.
Heavier than air[ edit ] InSir George Cayley set forth the concept of the modern airplane as a fixed-wing flying machine with separate systems for lift, propulsion, and control. The report on the trials was not publicized untilas they had been a military secret.
In November Ader claimed to have made a successful flight on 14 Octoberachieving an "uninterrupted flight" of around metres feet. Although widely believed at the time, these claims were later discredited.
Only a decade later, at the start of World War Iheavier-than-air powered aircraft had become practical for reconnaissance, artillery spotting, and even attacks against ground positions.
Aircraft began to transport people and cargo as designs grew larger and more reliable. The Wright brothers took aloft the first passenger, Charles Furnas, one of their mechanics, on May 14, One of the most successful designs of this period was the Douglas DC-3which became the first airliner to be profitable carrying passengers exclusively, starting the modern era of passenger airline service.
By the beginning of World War II, many towns and cities had built airports, and there were numerous qualified pilots available.
The war brought many innovations to aviation, including the first jet aircraft and the first liquid-fueled rockets. After World War II, especially in North America, there was a boom in general aviationboth private and commercial, as thousands of pilots were released from military service and many inexpensive war-surplus transport and training aircraft became available.
Manufacturers such as CessnaPiperand Beechcraft expanded production to provide light aircraft for the new middle-class market. By the s, the development of civil jets grew, beginning with the de Havilland Cometthough the first widely used passenger jet was the Boeingbecause it was much more economical than other aircraft at that time.
At the same time, turboprop propulsion began to appear for smaller commuter planes, making it possible to serve small-volume routes in a much wider range of weather conditions. Since the s composite material airframes and quieter, more efficient engines have become available, and Concorde provided supersonic passenger service for more than two decades, but the most important lasting innovations have taken place in instrumentation and control.
The arrival of solid-state electronics, the Global Positioning Systemsatellite communicationsand increasingly small and powerful computers and LED displays, have dramatically changed the cockpits of airliners and, increasingly, of smaller aircraft as well.
Pilots can navigate much more accurately and view terrain, obstructions, and other nearby aircraft on a map or through synthetic visioneven at night or in low visibility.Beyond Aviation Human Factors: Safety in High Technology Systems [Daniel E.
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Aviation, or air transport, refers to the activities surrounding mechanical flight and the aircraft industry.
Aircraft includes fixed-wing and rotary-wing types, morphable wings, wing-less lifting bodies, as well as lighter-than-air craft such as balloons and airships.. Aviation began in the 18th century with the development of the hot air balloon, an apparatus capable of atmospheric.
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