Library Index » Science Encyclopedia » Introduction to Space Exploration - Ancient Perspectives On Space, Enlightened Observations, Space Travel In Early Science Fiction, The Wright Stuff

Introduction to Space Exploration - The Wright Stuff

aviation flights united fai

On December 17, 1903, brothers Orville and Wilbur Wright made history at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, with the first sustained flights of a powered aircraft. Each brother took two flights that day. The longest flight covered about 850 feet and lasted just under one minute. The modern age of aviation had begun.

In 1905 the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI) was formed in Europe by representatives from Belgium, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, and the United States. The FAI became the official organization for cataloguing and verifying aeronautical feats around the world. Its purpose is "to advance the science and sport of aeronautics."

Aviation got off to a slow start in the United States. The earliest planes were notoriously dangerous, and several aspiring adventurers were killed flying them. Neither the American public nor the federal government was convinced that airplanes were safe and effective. The mood in Europe was much different. Engineers in France, England, and Germany produced their own versions of reliable and versatile aircraft.

Introduction to Space Exploration - Flying Takes Off [next] [back] Introduction to Space Exploration - Space Travel In Early Science Fiction

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