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On This Day: August 20

Aviation events for August 20

1901: The Wright brothers leave Kitty Hawk, N.C., at the end of their second season of testing gliders and return to Dayton, Ohio.
 
1908: The Wright Flyer built for flight trials before the U.S. Army arrives at Fort Meyer, near Washington, D.C., eight days ahead of schedule. Before trials begin, tests to check transportability, another stipulation, start.
 
1910: The first U.S. Army experiments with firing a rifle from an airplane takes place when Lt. Jacob Earl Fickel conducts firing trials from a Curtiss biplane piloted by Curtiss himself.
 
1913: French aviator Adolphe P├ęgoud carries out the first parachute descent ever made whereby the parachute is deployed before the pilot leaves the airplane.
 
1919: The first regularly scheduled passenger service by airship begins in Berlin with a Zeppelin LX 120 Bodenese.
 
1963: First flight of the BAC 1-11.
 
1970: First flight of the Sikorsky S-67 Blackhawk.
 
1977: he Voyager 2 unmanned interplanetary spacecraft is launched aboard a Titan IIIE/Centaur rocket from Cape Canaveral, tasked mainly with photographing Venus, Neptune and Saturn. As of today, Voyager 2 is still beaming messages back to Earth from 12 hrs 47 mins 58 secs of light-travel time from Earth.
 
1978: First flight of the British Aerospace Sea Harrier prototype, XZ450.
 
1986: The General Electric GE-36 propfan engine makes its first test flight. A hybrid between a turbofan and a turboprop, also known as an unducted fan, a number of factors from noise issues to falling fuel prices eventually lead to the abandonment of the program before ever being delivered, despite impressive gains in fuel economy.
 
1986: first test-flight of a propfan engine, the General Electric GE-36.
 
2008: A Spanair McDonnell Douglas MD-82 aircraft, flight number JK 5022, crashed with 165 passengers and nine crew members on board moments after takeoff at Madrid's Barajas Airport on a scheduled flight to Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. 18 of the 172 on board survived. Initially 19 people survived, but one person died in hospital three days after the crash.
 
2013: The first flight of the production AT-6 Texan II COIN variant(N630LA) at Wichita, KS.
 
 
 

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