The United States Air Force F-84 Thunderjet makes its first kill, when F-84 pilot Lieutenant Colonel William E. Bertram shoots down a MiG-15 during the Korean War.
Westinghouse J-40 jet engine (7,500 pounds dry thrust) completed 150-hour Navy qualification test.
First flight of Douglas D-558-2 Skyrocket supersonic research aircraft is made. It is launched from underneath its B-29 mother-ship and exceeds Mach 1 (the speed of sound) in a dive.
The United States and Canada announce the establishment of the Distant Early Warning (DEW), the air defense system that uses more than 30 radar stations located across the northern portion of the continent.
An English Electric Canberra becomes the first jet to make a crossing of the Atlantic without refueling, taking 4 hours 37 minutes.
the Martin aircraft company gains production rights to the English Electric Canberra as the B-57.
The Australian airline Qantas begins a survey flight from Rose Bay, Sydney to Valparaiso, Chile with a Catalina (VH - ASA).
Flying a U.S. Navy F9F Panther of Fighter Squadron 191 (VF-191) from the aircraft carrier USS Princeton (CV-37), Ensign Floryan "Frank" Sobieski is blinded by enemy ground fire over Korea. Guided and encouraged by his wingman, Lieutenant junior grade Pat Murphy, and assisted by Princeton's landing signal officer, Sobieski lands safely aboard Princeton wihout being able to see. He later recovers full vision.
A Douglas Dakota DC-3, being operated by Air Transport Charter crashes shortly after takeoff from Ringway Airport in Manchester, England. Ice forms on the carburetor after the Captain fails to properly use the heat controls, making the engines unable to gain enough power to climb. Of the 6 aboard, 4 die.
Flight Safety Inc. begins operations at the Marine Air Terminal at LaGuardia Airport, New York with just one secretary and rented late night hours on a Link trainer simulator.
Korean War: 48 US B-29 Superfortresses bomb the Sinuiju Railway Bridge spanning the Yalu River.
First flight of the Vickers Valiant.
U.S. Air Force Captain James Jabara becomes the first fighter ace to score his five victories in a jet (an F-86 Sabre) against jets (Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15s).
Capt. Charles Blair lands in his F-51 piston-engined Mustang after making the first solo flight across the North Pole in a single-engined aircraft, from Bardufoss, Norway to Fairbanks, Alaska, covering 3,375 miles in 10 hours, 29 minutes.
BEA commences helicopter services between London and Birmingham.
The first flight of aircraft with variable-sweep wings is made as the research aircraft Bell X-5, flies for 30 minutes at Edwards, California.
First flight of the Handley Page HP.88.
The first in-flight refueling under combat conditions is made by four US RF-80 A’s, refueled by a KB-29 tanker.
First flight of the Hawker Hunter prototype WB188
Powered by a Roll Royce Dart, a DC-3 of British European Airways becomes the first turboprop aircraft operated on a freight run.
Test pilot Bill Bridgeman reaches a record altitude of 79, 494 ft. in the #2 Douglas D-558-II rocket research aircraft, although this does not qualify for FAI (Federal Aeronautique Internationale) recognition.
The United States Marine Corps makes the world's first mass combat deployment by helicopter, landing 228 U.S. Marines on a hilltop near Kansong, Korea, using 12 Sikorsky HRS-1 helicopters.
First flight of the de Havilland Sea Vixen WG326.
First flight of the Gloster Javelin prototype WD804.
F/O Bruce Gogerly of 77 Squadron, Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), flying a Gloster Meteor, shoots down a Soviet-piloted MiG-15, the first of four air-to-air kills for RAAF pilots during the Korean War.
First flight of the Kaman K-225, first turbine-powered helicopter.
Alaska Air becomes the first airline to fly over the North Pole.
The first helicopter powered by a gas-turbine engine flies successfully. The Kaman K-225 uses a turbine that makes for a lighter, simpler, more powerful engine compared to a conventional piston engine.
The Lockheed Super Constellation enters service with Eastern Air Lines.
This year, for the first time, air passenger miles flown (10.6 million) have exceeded passenger miles traveled in Pullman cars on the railroad (10.2 million).