Pan Am World Airways schedules the first around the world passenger flight.
The US Army announces the delivery of its first troop-transport gliders.
The first fully practical, single rotor helicopter makes a successful flight flown by its creator, Igor Sikorsky.
TWA Flight 3 crashes into Potosi Mountain in Nevada, killing all 22 aboard including movie star Carole Lombard.
Arrow Airways and Canadian Airways merged to form Canadian Pacific Airlines. This airline would later be sold to Pacific Western Airlines in 1987, renaming the paired company Canadian Airlines International. This operation would later be absorbed by Air Canada in 2000.
The U.S. Navy aircraft carriers USS Enterprise (CV-6) and USS Yorktown (CV-5) launch air strikes against Japanese bases in the Marshall Islands. It is the first offensive operation by American forces in World War II.
Lieutenant Edward O’Hare becomes America’s first World War II flying ace after shooting down five Japanese heavy bombers.
J. S. Hey discovers radio emissions from Sun.
Lieutenant Colonel James Doolittle leads the first US attack on the Japanese mainland, leading a force of sixteen B-25 Mitchells flying from the USS Hornet against targets in and around Tokyo in what comes to be known as the "Doolittle Raid".
Lieutenant Commander Edward H. "Butch" O'Hare becomes the first U.S. Navy aviator to receive the Medal of Honor. Read more...
Squadron No. 588 of the Soviet Air Force, an all-woman night-bombing unit equipped with Polikarpov Po-2 biplanes, is formed in the USSR.
The Battle of the Coral Sea is fought between US Navy and Imperial Japanese Navy aircraft carriers. It is the first battle between aircraft carriers in history and the first naval battle in history in which the opposing warships do not sight one another Read more...
The Northrop XP-61 Black Widow night fighter prototype flies for the first time.
Battle of Midway is fought, the turning point in the Pacific War. Japan loses four carriers, Akagi, Kaga, Sōryū, and Hiryū. America loses USS Yorktown.
The U.S. Navy makes its first operational test with Loran (long-range navigation) equipment with a receiver mounted in a K-2 airship on a flight from the Lakehurst, N.J. Naval Air Station.
U.S. Army Air Forces conduct a test at Wright Field in Dayton, Ohio, successfully picking up gliders from the ground by an airplane flying at more than 100 mph.
First flight of the Grumman XF6F Hellcat.
First flight of the Martin XPB2M-1 Mars prototype BuNo 1520.
First flight of the Douglas A-26 Invader.
the world’s first operational jet-powered fighter aircraft and first mass-produced jet aircraft, the Messerschmitt Me 262 Schwalbe, is flown in Germany for the first time.
The 82nd Airborne (All American) paratroop division is formed.
First flight of the Consolidated C-32 Dominator heavy bomber. Because first deliveries would not occur until 1945, the aircraft’s impact in World War II was minimal. Production was halted with the 118th copy. Sadly, there no C-32 airframes remaining.
First flight of the Boeing XB-29 Super Fortress.
The first A4 rocket, later dubbed the V-2, flies from Peenemünde, covering 190 km (119 miles) in 296 seconds at five times the speed of sound, reaching an altitude of 84.5 km (53 miles).
Dubbed "Flying Flapjack," the most radical conventionally-engined aircraft ever built makes its 1st flight when Chance Vought test pilot, Boone T. Guyton, takes the V-173 into the air.
Australian pilot F/Sgt Ron Middleton earns a posthumous VC for valour in bringing his crew and crippled bomber home after a raid on Turin, Italy.
First flight of the Bell XP-63 King Cobra.