On This Day in Aviation History January 31 st

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1769 - Birth of André-Jacques Garnerin, French inventor of the frameless parachute.


1785 - Birth of Charles Green, British famous balloonist.


1880 - Friedrich Hermann Wölfert and Georg Baumgarten 's 1st cooperative dirigible, the 'Dreigondelluftschiff' (three gondola airship), takes off but crashed.


1883 - Birth of Jacob Earl "Jake" Fickel, USAF Major General usually associated with being an instructor of aviation. He is credited with firing the 1st recorded gunshot ever from an airplane.


1890 - Birth of Jeffery Batters Home-Hay, Scottish-born Canadian WWI Bomber pilot and flying ace, pioneering Canadian bush pilot. By the end of his aviation career, he was the oldest pilot still flying in Canada.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeffrey_Batters_Home-Hay - http://www.theaerodrome.com/aces/canada/home-hay.php

1892 - Birth of Heinrich Bongartz, German WWI fighter ace. He also served as a night fighter commander in WWII.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heinrich_Bongartz - http://www.theaerodrome.com/aces/germany/bongartz.php

1894 - Birth of André Marcel Desoutter, British aviator, aircraft designer, who also helped to develop Gatwick and Gravesend aerodromes as airports. With his brother Charles, he formed the Desoutter Brothers Limited to manufacture artificial legs.


1896 - Birth of Richard Burnard Munday, British WWI flying ace and balloon buster, notable for scoring Britain's 1st night victory.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Burnard_Munday - http://www.theaerodrome.com/aces/england/munday.php

1897 - Birth of John Ellis Langford Hunter, British WWI fighter ace

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_E._L._Hunter - http://www.theaerodrome.com/aces/england/hunter2.php

1913 - Birth of Juan Comas Borrás, Spanish Republican flying ace of the civil war

http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juan_Comas_Borr%C3%A1s - http://surfcity.kund.dalnet.se/spain_comas.htm

1918 - The Curtiss R-6 (Model 2A) twin-float seaplane becomes the 1st US-built airplane to operate overseas with American forces at Naval Base 13, Ponta Delgado, in the Azores.


1923 - The Cierva C.4 Autogyro made a circular flight of 4 km (2½ miles) in 3½ minutes, at an altitude of over 25 m (80 ft) at Cuatro Vientos, Spain.


1934 - 1st flight of the Fairey Fox IV, British light bomber and fighter biplane, Reengined evolution of the Fox II.


1934 - Death of Walter Wellman, American journalist, explorer, and aeronaut.


1939 - 1st flight of The SNCAO 200 (CAO.200), French single seat fighter aircraft prototype.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SNCAO_200 - http://www.aviafrance.com/aviafrance1.php?ID=692

1939 - Birth of Mary Wallace 'Wally' Funk, American aviatrix, test pilot and NASA Astronaut.


1945 - Australian National Airways Stinson Model A 'Tokana' broke up in middair and crashed 21 minutes after taking off from Essendon Airport, 2 miles (3.2 km) east of Redesdale, killing all 10, in cloudy weather with strong winds. It was determined that the accident was caused by a fatigue crack in the main spar of the left wing that caused the outer part of the left wing, outboard of the engine nacelle, to separate from the remainder of the aircraft.


1950 - 1st flight of the Castel C-311P, French high wing monoplane Single seat glider trainer.


1951 - 1st flight of the Fouga CM-8R9.8 'Cyclope' II, French single seat cantilever monoplane jet trainer with a V tail


1951 - Captain Charles Blair flies a P-51 Mustang (christened "Excalibur III") piston engine fighter non-stop from New York to London to test the jet stream, traveling 3,478 miles (5,597 km) at an average speed of 446 miles per hour (718 km/h) in 7 hours 48 minutes


1953 - Death of Hampton Edward Boggs, American WWII and Korean war flying ace, killed in the crash of his North American F-86F Sabre while on final approach in bad weather to Truax Field, Wisconsin.


1956 - 1st flight of the SNCAN Nord 2503 'Noratlas', French twin engine high wing twin boom military transport aircraft, reengined version prototype of the production version 2501.


1957 – Eight people on the ground in Pacoima, California are killed following the mid-air collision between a Douglas DC-7 airliner and a Northrop F-89 Scorpion fighter jet.


1958 – Explorer 1 is The 1st successful American satellite launched into orbit.


1958 - 1st flight of The North American T-2 Buckeye, US Navy's intermediate training aircraft, intended to introduce Student Naval Aviators to jets.


1961 - 1st flight of the Sud Aviation SA-318C 'Alouette' II, French 4 seat helicopter, reengined version of the iitial serie.


1961 - American space mission Mercury-Redstone 2 (MR-2) : Ham the Chimp is the 1st chimpanzee launched into outer space in the American space program. He flew 16 minutes in Mercury spacecraft No. 5

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury-Redstone_2 - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ham_the_Chimp

1961 - Launch of Samos 2, American early electro-optical reconnaissance spacecraft.


1966 - Launch of Luna 9, Soviet unmanned space mission and 1st spacecraft to achieve a soft landing on any planetary body other than Earth and to transmit photographic data to Earth.


1968 - Lunar Orbiter 5, NASA Last of the Lunar Orbiter series, designed to take additional Apollo and Surveyor landing site photography and to take broad survey images of unphotographed parts of the Moon's far side, Crashes on moon's surface.


1970 - Death of Mikhail Leontyevich Mil, founder of the Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant, which is responsible for many of the well-known Russian helicopter models, notably the Mil Mi-24 'Hind'.


1971 – Apollo program: Apollo 14 – Astronauts Alan Shepard, Stuart Roosa, and Edgar Mitchell, aboard a Saturn V, lift off for a mission to the Fra Mauro Highlands on the Moon.


1972 - 1st flight of the British Army Version Westland-assembled Aerospatiale SA 341B Gazelle AH.1, all-purpose lightweight helicopter.


1977 - 1st flight of The Cessna Citation II, American light corporate jet development of the Citation I.


1983 - Ayres Turbo Thrush NEEDS cropduster plane officially joins the United States' "war on drugs".


1986 - Boeing completes the purchase of de Havilland Canada


1989 - Death of William Samuel Stephenson, Canadian WWI fighter ace, businessman, inventor, spymaster, considered as the real-life inspirations for James Bond.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Stephenson - http://www.theaerodrome.com/aces/canada/stephenson2.php

1990 - Death of Samuel Cochran Phillips, American WWII fighter pilot, USAF general, Director of NASA's Apollo Manned Lunar Landing Program and Director of the National Security Agency.


1991 - An Iraqi shoulder-launched Strela 2 surface-to-air missile hits a U. S. Air Force AC-130 H Spectre gunship over Kuwait during the Battle of Khafji; the aircraft crashes into the Persian Gulf, killing all 14 on board.


1998 - STS-89, space shuttle Endeavour mission to the Mir space station, is back on earth.


1998 - 1st flight of the Bombardier Dash 8 Q400, Stretched and improved 70–78 passenger (twin-engined, medium range, turboprop airliner) version of the canadian Bombardier Dash 8 , previously known as the de Havilland Canada Dash 8 or DHC-8,


2000 – Alaska Airlines Flight 261 McDonnell Douglas MD-83, experiencing horizontal stabilizer problems, crashes in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Point Mugu, California, killing all 88 aboard.


2002 - Death of Francis Stanley "Gabby" Gabreski (Franciszek Gabryszewski), top American fighter ace in Europe during WWII, and jet fighter ace in Korea.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gabby_Gabreski - http://cieldegloire.com/014_gabreski_f_s.php

2005 - A Colombian government Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter on an anti-narcotics mission crashes in heavy fog near Manguipayan, Colombia killing all 20 on board.


2008 - Death of John Wescott Myers, American WWII test pilot and businessman.


2009 - Death of Frantisek 'Fero' Cyprich, Slovak WWII fighter ace who served on the Eastern front with the Axis Forces until The Slovak National Uprising (armed insurrection organized by the Slovak resistance movement during WWII).

http://surfcity.kund.dalnet.se/slovakia_cyprich.htm - http://en.valka.cz/viewtopic.php/title/Cyprich-Frantisek/p/186338


2011 - Death of Charles Huron Kaman, American aeronautical engineer, businessman, inventor and philanthropist, known for his work in rotary-wing flight and also in musical instrument design