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FEB10

On This Day in Aviation History February 10 th
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1891 - Birth of Air Marshal Sir William Lawrie Welsh, British Royal Air Force officer who commanded British air operations during Operation Torch and also a WWI RNAS Pilot.

1891 - Birth of Juan Guillermo Villasana Lopez, prominent mexican engineer and early aviator.

1892 - Birth of Roland Rohlfs, American early aviator and test pilot.

1897 - Birth of Erik Thomas, German WWI flying ace

1898 - Birth of Walter Kreiser (also known as Konrad Wiederhold), German Journalist and aircraft designer.

1898 - Birth of Thomas Sydney Chiltern, British WWI flying ace

1903 - Birth of George John Dufek,  American naval officer, naval aviator, and Arctic expert.

1913 - Birth of Federico Cozzolino, Italian Aviator.

1914 - Birth of Claudio Solaro, Spanish war and WWII italian flying ace, High ranking officer post WWII who took an active part in the rebirth of the Italian Air Force. 

1914 - Hans Rudolf Berliner, Alexander Haase and A. Nikolai land their free balloon in Perm, setting a new distance record of 3053 km from Bitterfeld.

1917 - Birth of Tokuya Sudo, Japanese China war and Russian war Flying ace.

1929 - Evelyn "Bobbi" Trout broke the record for the 1st all-night flight by a woman as well as and the new women's solo endurance record flying more than 17 hours

1930 - Air Union Farman F.63 Goliath crashed whilst attempting an emergency landing at Marden Airfield, Kent following the failure of the starboard tailplane, killing 2 over 6.

1933 - 1st flight of the Hawker Demon, Fighter variant of the British 2 seater biplane light bomber Hawker hart.

1935 - 1st flight of the A.N.F. Les Mureaux 180, French Single engine High wing monoplane 2 seat fighter prototype, evolution of the 170

1935 - 1st flight of the Fauvel AV-10, French twin seat side by side flying wing light tourer aircraft prototype, 1st flying wing to attain a French Certificate of Navigability.

1936 - 1st flight of The Fiat BR.20 Cicogna, Italian low-wing twin-engine medium bomber.

1938 - Squadron Leader J.W. Gillan of N° 111 Squadron, makes headline news when he flies his Hawker Hurricane from Edinburgh in Scotland to Northolt in Middlesex at an average speed of 657kph (408 mph). The night flight benefited from a strong tail wind.

1940 - 1st flight of the 3rd prototype Polikarpov I-180.3, powered by a more powerful M-88R engine and fitted with a stressed skin wing (replacing the I-16 type wing structure of the previous prototypes).

1941 - 1st operation by British airborne forces (Operation Colossus) is carried out by 38 men of 'X' Troop, No.11 Special Air Service Battalion, against two aqueducts at Traqino in Southern Italy. 'X' Troop are dropped by six Armstrong Whitworth Whitleys of No.78 Squadron, led by Wing Commander J.B. Tait and a further two aircraft, one of which fails to return, mount a diversionary raid on Foggia. The paratroopers succeed in destroying the end pier of Traqino Viaduct, however, they are captured before they can rendezvous with the submarine HMS Triumph for retrieval.

1944 - American Airlines Flight 2 Douglas DC-3-277A crashed on approach for unknown reason into the Mississippi River approximately 29 kilometres (18 mi) southwest of Memphis Municipal Airport, killing all 24.

1947 - 1st flight of The Dassault MD 303, French light twin-engined transport airplane prototype.

1952 - Death of George Andrew Davis, Jr., USAF fighter pilot during World War II and the Korean War, after attacking a group of 12 Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15s that were about to bounce other US aircraft. He shot down two before being shot down himself.

1953 - Death of William Spurrett Fielding-Johnson, British WWI flying ace

1954 - 1st flight of the Gloster Meteor F8 "Prone Pilot", modified Gloster Meteor F8 british fighter prototype,  used to evaluate the advantages of coping with "g"-forces while flying in a prone position

1959 - 1st flight of The PZL-BZ-4 Zuk, Polish four-seat light helicopter prototype, which pioneered a novel rotor and transmission system.

1961 - 1st Piper Pa-28 Cherokee production is flown.

1962 - American U-2 pilot Gary Powers, shot down and arrested in the U.S.S.R. May 1st 1960, is exchanged along with American student Frederic Pryor in a well publicized spy swap for Soviet KGB Colonel Vilyam Fisher (aka Rudolf Abel), a Soviet colonel who was caught by the FBI and put in jail for espionage, at the Glienicke Bridge in Berlin, Germany.

1963 - Death of Isidore Auguste Marie Louis Paulhan, known as Louis Paulhan, pioneering French aviator who flew "Le Canard", the world's 1st seaplane.

1964 - Death of Eugen Sänger, Austrian-German aerospace engineer best known for his contributions to lifting body and ramjet technology.

1967 - 1st flight of The Dornier Do 31, West German experimental VTOL jet transport aircraft.

1968 - Birth of Garrett Erin Reisman, American engineer and NASA astronaut.

1971 - Death of Alfred Clayburn Atkey, Canadian WWI fighter ace

1974 - Mars 4 orbiter flew by Mars at a range of 2200 km, returning one swath of pictures and some radio occultation data which constituted the 1st detection of the nightside ionosphere on Mars

1976 - 1st flight of the Westand Lynx HAS.Mk 2, Naval version of the British multi-purpose military helicopter.

1977 - Death of George John Dufek, American naval officer, naval aviator, and Arctic expert.

1993 - McDonnell Douglas produces its 10,000th aircraft

1995 - 1st prototype of the Antonov An-70 cargo aircraft crashed during a test flight in Kiev Oblast after it collided with an escorting Antonov An-72 and fell into a forested area.

1995 - 2 Peruvian Sukhoi Su-22Ms are shot down by a pair of Ecuadorian Mirage F.1JAs. Almost simultaneously, a Peruvian Cessna A-37B is also shot down by an Ecuadorian Kfir C.2.

1997 - Launch of Soyuz TM-25, Russian mission to MIR.

1997 - Death of Amron Harry Katz, American physicist who specialized in aerial reconnaissance.

2000 - Death of Igor Bensen,  Russian born american engineer, founder of the Bensen Aircraft, which produced a successful line of Gyrogliders (rotor kites) and Autogyros. He  founded the Popular Rotorcraft Association in 1962, a non-profit interest group for owners and homebuilders of autogyros and helicopters, based in Mentone, Indiana.

2004 - Kish Air Flight 7170, operated by a Fokker 27 Mk.050, crashed at Sharjah International Airport killing 43 people. Three survived with serious injuries. The cause was that the propellors were put into reverse pitch while the aircraft was in flight

2009 – 1st major collision of two satellites in Earth orbit. The communication satellites Iridium 33 and Kosmos-2251 collide in orbit, destroying both.

2011 - Manx2 Flight 7100 Fairchild SA227-BC Metro III crashed while trying to land in foggy weather at Cork Airport, Cork, Republic of Ireland, Killing 6 over 12