On This Day in Aviation History DECEMBER 13th

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1848 - Birth of Enrico Forlanini, Italian engineer, inventor and aeronautical pioneer, well known for his works on helicopters, aircraft, hydrofoils and dirigibles.

1872 - Paul Haenlein tests the 1st airship with a gas engine in Brünn, achieving 19 km/h. The tests were stopped because of a shortage of money.

1894 - Birth of Friedrich Hefty, Austro-Hungarian WWI flying ace. -

1894 - Birth of Everett Richard Cook, American WWI flying ace, High ranking officer during WWII and later, one of the Directors of Eastern Airlines -

1895 - Birth of Henry Adler Berliner, American aircraft and helicopter pioneer.

1896 - Birth of Fritz Horn, German aviation pioneer and raid pilot

1897 - Birth of Robert Bajac, French WWI pilot, airline pilot and record setter. -

1913 - Hugo Kaulen starts a 87hrs endurance flight in his balloon.

1918 - A.S. MacLaren, Halley, and McEwen in Handley Page V-1500 four-engined bomber, take off this day for the 1st 'through-flight' from Martlesham Heath, England to India.

1919 - Birth of Hans-Joachim Marseille, German WWII flying ace. -

1924 - In an early parasite fighter experiment, Lt Clyde Flinter unsuccessfully attempts to dock his Sperry Messenger with the US Army airship TC-3.

1927 - Charles Lindbergh takes off with the Spirit of St Louis for the 7,800-mile (12,600 km) "Good Will Tour" of Latin America and the Caribbean

1935 - USAAC officer Arthur K. Ladd, assistant supply officer for the General Headquarters Air Force, is killed in the crash of a Boeing P-12F 3 miles E of Dale, South Carolina, while en route from Langley Field, Virginia, to Miami, Florida for an air race and exhibition.

1936 - 1st flight of The PZL.37 Los, Polish twin-engine medium bomber.

1939 - 1st time in WWII that a ship-based seaplane spots gunfire for a Royal Navy ship : Lieutenant Edgar Duncan Goodenough Lewin with his Fairey Seafox floatplane catapulted from the British light cruiser HMS Ajax spots fire for her guns while she fires on the German “pocket battleship” Admiral Graf Spee during the Battle of the River Plate. -

1945 - 1st Armee de l'Air fighter unit in French Indo-China, GCII/7, is formed at Tan Son Nhut using ex-RAF Supermarine Spitfire VIII fighters.

1948 - A blade on the right-hand rotor of the 2nd prototype Bratukhin B-11 (Soviet twin-rotor transport helicopter and the last design of the Bratukhin aircraft design )broke, and the subsequent crash killed the two crew.

1951 - Maj George Davis of the 334th Fighter Interceptor Squadron shoots down 4 MiG-15s in a single day with his F-86 Sabre.,_Jr.#Aerial_victory_credits -

1952 - Birth of André Borschberg, Swiss businessman and pilot, co-founder of the Solar Impulse project.

1954 - 1st forward flight in hover mode of the Transcendental 1-G, American single-seater convertible helicopter prototype with two contra-rotating rotors located at the end of its wings which be swivelled forward to become the traction airscrews of a typical aircraft.

1958 - 1st flight of The Kaman HH-43B 'Huskie', American helicopter with intermeshing rotors, major production version of the Huskie issued from the HOK-1 prototype.

1958 - Gordo, also known as "Old Reliable", a squirrel monkey, lifts off in a Jupiter AM-13 rocket for a 15 minutes space flight. Unfortunately, The failure of Gordo's parachute meant that both he and the capsule were lost, despite efforts to recover them. It is believed that Gordo was alive at the time of impact.

1959 - 1st flight of The Aviamilano P.19 Scricciolo, Italian 2 seat side by side low-wing monoplane with tailwheel undercarriage light civil trainer aircraft

1960 - Leroy Heath and Larry Monroe set an altitude record of 91,419 Ft (27,865m) with a North American Aviation A-5 Vigilante

1962 - Launch of Relay-1, NASA experimental communications satellite. It included radiation experiments designed to map the earth's radiation belts and provided the 1st television transmissions across the Pacific Ocean.

1963 - Project Stargazer: Joseph Kittinger and astronomer William C. White took an open-gondola helium balloon packed with scientific equipment to an altitude of about 82,200 feet (25,100 m), where they spent over eighteen hours performing astronomical observations.

1967 - Launch of Pioneer 8, American satellite engaged in research and exploration of the upper atmosphere or outer space,_7,_8,_and_9#Pioneer_8

1977 – A National Jet Services Douglas C-53 (DC-3) aircraft chartered from the Indianapolis-based National Jet crashes near Evansville Regional Airport, killing 29, including the University of Evansville basketball team, support staff and boosters of the team

1987 - Philippine Airlines Flight 443 Short 360-300 crashed on Mount Gurain while approaching Iligan-Maria Cristina Airport, Philippines, killing all 15.

1993 - STS-61 Endeavour space shuttle mission is back on earth.

1994 - American Eagle Flight 3379 Jetstream 31 crashed into a wooded area about 4 miles SW of the Raleigh-Durham International Airport in the vicinity of Morrisville, NC, killing 15 over 20. The probable cause of the crash was the pilot not following proper procedure when it came to an engine failure situation.

1995 - Banat Air Flight 166 Antonov An-24B crashed on take-off at Verona-Villafranca Airport, italia, due to 2-3 tonnes excess weight and due to ice accumulated on the wings, killing all 8 crew and 41 passengers.

2003 - 1st flight of The Guizhou JL-9, (also known as the FTC-2000 Mountain Eagle 'Shanying'), People's Republic of China 2-seat fighter trainer.

2003 - Death of Frank Neubert, German WWII dive bomber pilot, believed to have been the 1st victor in aerial combat in WWII.