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JAN17

On This Day in Aviation History January 17 th
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1847 - Birth of Nikolay Yegorovich Zhukovsky, Russian scientist, founding father of modern aero- and hydrodynamics. Whereas contemporary scientists scoffed at the idea of human flight, Zhukovsky was the 1st to undertake the study of airflow.

1852 - Death of Louis Brennan, Irish-Australian mechanical engineer, inventor and early helicopter designer.

1885 - Birth of Karl Nikitsch, Austro-Hungarian  WWI flying ace

1886 - Birth of Glenn Luther Martin, American aviation pioneer, Founder of the Glenn L. Martin Company.

1890 - Birth of Paul Armand Petit, French WWI flying ace

1891 - Birth of Hans Klein, German WWI fighter ace, and WWII luftwaffe high ranking officer.

1892 - Birth of Amedeo Mecozzi, Italian WWI flying ace, WWII general of the Italian Regia Aeronautica and a military theorist credited as the founding father of the "Attack air force" doctrine

1892 - Birth of Thomas Mottershead, British WWI pilot.

1899 - Birth of Nevil Shute Norway, popular British novelist and a successful aeronautical engineer.

1902 - Gustave Whitehead reportedly flies his Whitehead Aeroplane No. 22 flying boat on an 11 km (7 mile) flight and lands safely.

1906 - 1st flight of the  Zeppelin LZ2, German experimental airship,  true "prototype" of the Zeppelin airships, over Lake Constance, Germany, achieving a speed of 25 mph.

1916 - British WWI flying ace Eustace Osborne Grenfell shot down 1 Albatros C and 3 Fokker E on a single mission with his Morane Parasol N.

1923 - 1st flight of the SPAD S-36, French High altitude 2 seat reconnaissance turbocharged biplane aircraft prototype.

1939 - The Renard R-36, Belgian all-metal fighter prototype single seat aircraft, crashed near Nivelles, killing pilot Lt. Visconte Eric de Spoelberg. 

1941 - The Battle of Koh Chang, French-Thai War, opens with a bombing attack on Royal Thai Navy warships at Koh Chang, Thailand, by a French Loire 130 flying boat and ends with Royal Thai Air Force aircraft bombing French warships.

1943 - Birth of Daniel Charles Brandenstein, US Navy test pilot and NASA astronaut

1948 - 1st flight of a RCAF de havilland Vampire F3 in Canada.

1949 - Avro Tudor Mark IVB 'Star Ariel' passenger aircraft (British piston-engined airliner based on the four-engine Lincoln bomber) owned and operated by British South American Airways (BSAA) disappeared without trace over the Atlantic Ocean while on a flight between Bermuda and Kingston, Jamaica, part of  the Bermuda Triangle legend.

1963 - 1st flight of The Short SC.7 Skyvan, British 19-seater twin turboprop aircraft used mainly for short-haul freight and skydiving.

1963 - Joe Walker flies the North American X15A to a height of 82,600 metres (271,000 feet) and, having flown higher than 50 miles, he qualifies for astronaut wings.

1966 - A B-52 Stratofortress collides with a KC-135 Stratotanker during aerial refueling near Palomares, Spain. Seven crewmembers are killed in the crash, and two of the B-52's four nuclear weapons rupture, scattering radioactive material over the countryside. One bomb lands intact near the town, and another is lost at sea. It is later recovered intact 5 miles (8 km) offshore.

1966 - 1st total transition flight of the Canadair CL-84 "Dynavert", canadian V/STOL turbine tilt-wing monoplane prototype.

1966 - 1st flight of The Chengdu Jian-7, People's Republic of China-built version of the Soviet Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21.

1969 - Soyuz 4 returns on earth.

1970 - 1st flight of The Sukhoi T-6-2I, variable-sweep wing version of the soviet supersonic, all-weather attack aircraft prototype, which will lead to the production of the Sukhoi Su-24 'Fencer'.

1974 - Death of Wilhelm "Willy" Thöne, German WWI flying ace.

1976 - Launch of CTS-1 (Hermes), Canadian experimental high-power direct broadcast communications satellite.

1982 - Death of William Thomas Price, British WWI flying ace.

1989 - Death of Gerald W. A. 'Gerry' Bell, pioneering afro-canadian aviator and instructor who served in WWII.

1991 - US-led forces attack Iraq in a massive air assault after a United Nations deadline for the withdrawal of Iraqi troops from occupied Kuwait passes unheeded.

1991 - On the 1st day of Gulf War, USN pilots Nick Mongilio and Mark I. Fox were sent from the USS Saratoga in the Red Sea to bomb an airfield in southwestern Iraq. While en route, they were warned by an E-2C of approaching MiG-21 aircraft. The Hornets shot down two MiGs and resumed their bombing run, each carrying four 2,000 lb (910 kg) bombs, before returning to Saratoga.

1991 - An unarmed USAF EF-111A Raven, crewed by Captain James A. Denton and Captain Brent D. Brandon scored a kill against an Iraqi Dassault Mirage F1EQ, which they managed to maneuver into the ground, making it the only F-111 to achieve an aerial victory over another aircraft.

1997 - A Delta II 7925 rocket carrying the 1st GPS Block IIR satellite, GPS IIR-1, exploded only 13 seconds after liftoff, raining flaming debris all over Launch Complex 17 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

2008 – British Airways Flight 38 Boeing 777-236ER crash lands just short of London Heathrow Airport in England with no fatalities. It is the 1st complete hull loss of a Boeing 777.

2009 - FlyLal (Lithuanian Airlines aor LAL), national airline of Lithuania, cease operations.

2009 - French Navy Eurocopter AS 532 helicopter crashes into the sea off Gabon shortly after take-off from the amphibious assault ship 'La Foudre', killing 8 over 10.

2012 - 1st flight of the Cessna Citation Ten, American long-range medium business jet aircraft, Evolution of the Citation X.