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On This Day in Aviation History

On This Day in Aviation History

1897 – Birth of Rudolf Stark, German World War I flying ace.

1905 – Arthur Charles Hubert Latham accompanied his cousin, the balloonist Jacques Faure, on a night crossing of the English Channel (from London to Paris) in a gas balloon.

1945 – First flight of the Consolidated Vultee XP-81, an American single-seat, long-range escort fighter prototype that combines a turbojet and a turboprop engine.

1978 – Pacific Western Airlines Flight 314 Boeing 737-200 crashes at Cranbrook-Canadian Rockies International Airport, near Cranbook, B.C., Canada, after its thrust reversers do not fully stow following an aborted landing to avoid a snowplow on the runway, killing 42 of the 49 aboard.

1986 – Death of Paul Yvan Robert Waddington, French World War I flying ace; he later rose to lieutenant colonel and commanded a school for fighter pilots before World War II.

2010 – The Boeing YAL-1 Airborne Laser Testbed (shown), a megawatt-class chemical oxygen iodine laser mounted inside a modified Boeing 747-400F, successfully destroys a liquid-fuel boosting ballistic missile less than one minute after its launch.

Updated: February 11, 2014 — 11:32 AM

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