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MAY07

On This Day in Aviation History MAY 7 th 
 
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1878 - Birth of Karl Gustav Vollmöller, German playwright, screenwriter and early aircraft designer

1893 - Birth of Karl Paul Schlegel, German WWI fighter ace and balloonbuster.

1894 - Birth of Wendel Archibald Robertson, American WWI flying ace

1910 - The Antoinette Company builds a simulator at Mourmelon air school for pilots to practice the controls of an Antoinette monoplane.

1910 - 1st airplane flight in Cuba. For a few minutes, Frenchman André Bellot rose into space in a 60HP Voisin biplane. He took off from the Almendares Hippodrome and fell almost immediately but he was not hurt.

1912 - An American Wright biplane, flown by Lieutenant Thomas De Witt Milling at College Park in Maryland, becomes the 1st aeroplane to be armed with a machine gun

1915 - Birth of Hidaka Hatsuo, Japanese russo-japanese war and WWII flying ace.

1915 - Birth of Johannes Wiese,  German WWII fighter ace.

1916 - Birth of Siegfried F. Erdmann, German Engineer specialized in supersonic Aerodynamics.

1916 - Birth of Fred Hargesheimer, USAAF WWII pilot. Shot down over Papua New Guinea in June 1943. He became a philanthropist who helped out the village which had hidden him from the Japanese for many months.

1917 - British ace Captain Albert Ball (44 victories) is killed in a crash following a dogfight with Lothar von Richthofen, who also crashes but survives.

1917 - British ace Major Edward Mannock claims his first kill.(an observation balloon).

1917 - 1st night bombing raid on London by an aeroplane takes place.

1918 - Canadian WWI fighter ace Alfred Clayburn Atkey and his observer, British fighter ace Charles George Gass, scored 5 victories on a single mission with their Bristol F.2b.

1918 - 1st flight of the  Curtiss 18T, unofficially known as the Wasp and by the United States Navy as the Kirkham, early American triplane fighter aircraft designed by Curtiss Engineering for the US Navy

1920 - Cuban Aviator Agustin Parla flew over La Havana at nignt, thatt is considered as the 1st nocturnal flight.

1923 - 1st flight of The Armstrong Whitworth Siskin III , British biplane single-seat fighter aircraft, 1st all metal RAF fighter.

1926 - 1st flight of the Blériot Bl-127/1, French twin engine bomber monoplane prototype.

1927 - VARIG airline is founded in Brazil.

1928 - 1st flight of the  Couzinet 10 Arc en Ciel I , French three-engined commercial monoplane.

1931 - Death of Richard Dick Waghorn, English aviator, a pilot with the Royal Air Force who flew the winning aircraft in the 1929 Schneider Trophy seaplane race. Died from injuries after his crash 2 days before.

1933 - Stanislaw Skarzynski takes off from Saint-Louis, Senegal to cross the South Atlantic to Brazil in a small single-seater tourist airplane RWD-5bis (part of Warsaw - Rio de Janeiro flight).

1936 - Amy Mollison lands at Wingfield Aerodrome, Cape Town, South Africa, Setting a new record of 3 days, 6 hours, 26 minutes for a flight from England in a Percival Gull 6.

1937 - Birth of Aviard Gavrilovich Fastovets, Soviet test pilot.

1937 - Death of Captain Ernst August Lehmann, German Zeppelin captain, fatally burned when the LZ129 Hindenburg caught fire at Lakehurst the day before.

1938 - 1st flight of the Arpin A-1 , two seat low-wing monoplane which was powered by a single radial engine in pusher configuration.

1939 - 1st flight of the Petlyakov VI-100, Soviet pressurized high-altitude twin-engined interceptor prototype which will lead to the development of the Pe-2.

1940 - A Bristol Beaufort torpedo bomber of RAF Coastal Command drops the 1st 2,000 pound bomb to be delivered by the Royal Air Force (RAF) during WWII. The target is an enemy cruiser near Nordeney, but the weapon missed the warship.

1941 – 2nd prototype MiG I-200 (Mig-1), Soviet high-altitude fighter aircraft, fitted with a prototype of the temperamental Mikulin AM-37 engine, experienced severe vibration problems and crashed. 

1942 – During the Battle of the Coral Sea, United States Navy aircraft carrier aircraft attack and sink the Japanese Imperial Navy light aircraft carrier Shoho. The battle marks the 1st time in the naval history that two enemy fleets fight without visual contact between warring ships. It is also the last combat actions of the Mitsubishi A5M 'Claude' as a Fighter.

1942 - Death of Jean Assollant (Bernache-Assollant), French aviation pioneer, WWII pilot, well known for having flown the 'Oiseau canari' on a north atlantic crossing. Killed in his MS 406 by british fighters during the Battle of Madagascar.

1943 - Colonel Frank Gregory made the first helicopter landing aboard ship with a Sikorsky R-4, in Long Island Sound, USA.

1944 - Flight test program of the Mikoyan/Gurevich I-222,  high-altitude Soviet fighter aircraft, Evolution of the MIG-3, begins. All proposals for series production were discarded at the end of war.

1944 - 1st flight of The Beechcraft XA-38 Grizzly, American twin engine ground attack prototype aircraft, fitted with a forward-firing 75 mm cannon to attack heavily armored targets.

1946 - The Empire Central Flying School is renamed the Empire Flying School.

1946 - 1st flight of The Handley Page H.P.67 Hastings, British all-metal low-wing cantilever monoplane 4 engine troop-carrier and freight transport aircraft

1958 - Major Howard C. Johnson, flying a Lockheed F104A Starfighter, sets the 3d new world altitude record in less than 3 weeks, attaining a height of 27,811 metres (91,243 feet).

1959 - 1st flight of The Procaer F.15 Picchio ("Woodpecker"), Italian conventional low-wing cantilever monoplane with retractable tricycle undercarriage light utility aircraft.

1959 - Birth of Tamara Elizabeth "Tammy" Jernigan, American scientist and former NASA astronaut and a veteran of 5 shuttle missions

1960 – Cold War: U-2 Crisis of 1960 – Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev announces that his nation is holding American U-2 pilot Gary Powers.

1963 - Telstar 2 (communications satellite) is launched.

1963 - Death of Theodore von Kármán, Hungarian-American aerospace engineer and physicist who was active primarily in the fields of aeronautics and astronautics. He is responsible for many key advances in aerodynamics, notably his work on supersonic and hypersonic airflow characterization.

1964 - 1st flight of The Vickers Super VC10, Evolution of the long-range British airliner.

1964 – Pacific Air Lines Flight 773, a Fairchild F-27 airliner, crashes near San Ramon, California, killing all 44 aboard; the FBI later reports that a cockpit recorder tape indicates that the pilot and co-pilot had been shot by a suicidal passenger.

1965 - 1st flight of The Canadair CL-84, designated by the Canadian Forces as the CX-131,  V/STOL turbine tilt-wing monoplane prototype.

1969 - 1st flight of the HAS Mk.1 production Westland Sea King, Medium-lift transport/utility helicopter. (British licence-built version of the American Sikorsky S-61 helicopter)

1975 - Launch of Satellite ANIK A3 (1st generation of a series of synchronous orbit communications satellites developed by Hughes Aircraft Company for individual nations to use within their territorial boundaries)

1981 - Austral Lineas Aereas Flight 901 BAC 1-11 crashed in a river near Buenos Aires after succumbing to a thunderstorm on approach of Aeroparque Jorge Newbery.

1982 - 2 Sea Harriers from HMS Invincible are lost, they are believed to have collided while descending through cloud.

1983 - 1st flight of the Italair F.20TP Condor, Italian twin-engine utility aircraft prototype, Modernised version of the F.20 Pegaso, equipped with two pylons under each wing to demonstrate its capacity to carry external stores for military purposes.

1984 - 1st flight of the Pilatus PC-9, Swiss single-engine, low-wing tandem-seat turboprop training aircraft.

1986 - Death of Al Mooney, American self taught aircraft designer. Al, along with his brother Arthur Mooney were responsible for the startup of the Mooney Aircraft Company).

1992 – The Space Shuttle Endeavour is launched on its 1st mission (STS-49).

2002 – China Northern Airlines flight 6136 MD-82 plunges into the Yellow Sea, killing 112 people.

2002 - EgyptAir Flight 843, a Boeing 737-500, crashed into terrain in heavy rain, fog, and a sandstorm on its approach to Tunis, Tunisia, killing 15 of 64 occupant

2004 - Death of William J. "Pete" Knight, U.S. politician, combat pilot, test pilot, and astronaut. Knight holds the world's speed record for flight in a winged, powered aircraft.

2005 - Aero Tropics service Flight 675 Fairchild Metro III crashed on approach in low cloud and squally rain into Lockhart River, north of Cooktown, Queensland killing all 15 on board.

2011 - Merpati Nusantara Airlines Flight 8968 Xian MA60 crashed off the coast of West Papua, Indonesia on final approach to the Kaimana Airport, killing all 25 on board

2011 - Launch of GEO-1, 1st Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS) satellite, designed to provide key capabilities the areas of missile warning, missile defense and battlespace characterization.

2012 - Death of Dennis Edward "Denny" Fitch, Sr., American commercial airline pilot,  best known for his critical actions as an off-duty McDonnell Douglas DC-10 training captain, using differential throttle adjustment to steer United Airlines Flight 232 airliner to an oblique crash-landing at Sioux Gateway Airport, in Sioux City, Iowa, resulting in the survival of 184 out of 296 on board.