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On This Day: 1970

Aviation events for 1970

January 12: A Pan Am Boeing 747, on a proving flight from New York, is the first wide-bodied airliner to make a landing at Heathrow Airport in London.
January 17: Sukhoi T-6-2IG (prototype of Sukhoi Su-24 'Fencer').
January 22: Pan Am introduces the Boeing 747.
January 22: The Boeing 747 enters service with TWA.
January 23: Australia's 1st amateur radio satellite (Oscar 5) launched (Calif).
January 23: U.S. launches 2nd generation weather satellite, ITOS 1.
January 31: Mikhail Mil dies, aged 61
February 11: Japan becomes 4th nation to put a satellite, Osumi, in orbit.
February 19: First flight of the Canadair CL-84 CX8401.
February 19: U.S.S.R. launches Sputnik 52 and Molniya 1-13 communications satellite.
February 21: Swissair Flight 330, a Convair CV-990 Coronado (HB-ICD) crashes when a bomb explodes nine minutes after departure from Zurich. The attempt to return the damaged aircraft to the airfield fails, and all 47 on-board are killed when the plane crashes into a wooded area.
February 24: HMS Ark Royal is recommissioned after a £UK 30 million refit.
February 25: TWA becomes the first airline to fly a “Jumbo Jet” within the US, when it inaugurates a Boeing 747 service between Los Angeles and New York.
February 27: Hawker Siddeley begins buying back surplus Hawker Hunters from the Royal Air Force to remanufacture for new customers.
March 4: Cargolux is founded.
March 6: BEA opens its charter service, BEA Airtours.
April 11: Apollo 13 - USA Lunar Flyby (April 11-17, 1970) launched. Crew: James A. Lovell, Jr., Fred W. Haise, Jr., John L. Swigert, Jr. The Apollo 13 mission became one of survival for the astronauts on board. During the translunar coast an explosion destroyed both power and propulsion systems of the Command Service Module. The Lunar Module was used as a lifeboat for the astronauts. Read more...
April 17: A Sikorsky CH-53D helicopter flies between London and Paris to demonstrate that modern helicopters can provide reliable inter-city services.
April 17: The crippled Apollo 13 spacecraft and its four astronauts returns to earth safely after suffering an explosion enroute to the moon.
April 24: China launches its first space satellite, Dong Fang Hong I using a Long March I rocket. The satellite’s weight exceeds that of the first four satellites launched by Russia, the United States, France and Japan combined
May 2: An Overseas National Airways DC-9-30, wet leased to ALM, ditches en-route from JFK to SXM after three missed approaches to Princess Juliana International Airport. Forty passengers survived, 23 perished.
May 10: SR-71 (969) was lost due to a pitch up accident due to an improper center of gravity problem near Bangkok Thailand. Pilot Willie Lawson and RSO Gil Martinez survived. (Q)
May 18: National Airlines ends a 108-day strike by offering ground crews a 33% pay increase.
May 26: The prototype Tupolev Tu-144 supersonic airliner reaches a speed of 1,335mph, becoming the first commercial transport in the world to exceed Mach 2.
June 17: SR-71 (970) was lost due to a pitch up accident during refueling resulting in a collision with the KC-135 tanker near El Paso TX. The pilot Buddy Brown and the RSO Mortimer Jarvis both ejected safely. The tanker made an emergency landing at Briggs Army Air Field near El Paso TX.
July 1: Melbourne opens its new international airport.
July 17: Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport commences passenger screening to help prevent hijackings; the first airport to do so.
August 9: LANSA Flight 502, a Lockheed L-188A Electra, crashes shortly after takeoff from Cusco, Peru, killing all but one of the 100 on board, including 49 students from upstate New York. Two farmers on the ground also perish. Investigators find that an engine failure combined with improper engine-out procedures carried out by the crew, as well as inadequate loading procedures, led to the accident.
August 20: First flight of the Sikorsky S-67 Blackhawk.
August 22: Two Sikorsky HH-53C helicopters complete a non-stop transpacific flight of 9,000 miles (14,484 km) using in-flight refuelling.
August 24: Two USAF Sikorsky HH-53C helicopters complete a non-stop trans-Pacific crossing from Eglin AFB, Florida to Da Nang, South Vietnam, aided by refueling encounters with Lockheed C-130 tankers.
August 29: First flight of the McDonnell Douglas DC-10-10.
September 1: First flight of the Dassault Falcon 10. Read more...
September 3: Air France places the first orders for the Airbus A300.
October 2: A Martin 4-0-4 (registered N464M), carrying the Wichita State University football team, crashes into a mountain near Silver Plume, Colorado, killing 31 of the 40 on-board. The crash was attributed to poor pre-flight planning after the co-pilot chose a more scenic route without considering terrain limitations.
October 19: Hindustan Aeronautics completes its first license-built MiG-21.
October 20: A chartered Convair 240 carrying 26 people including members of the rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd runs out of fuel and crashes in a forest at Gillsburg, Mississippi. Among the six dead are three band members and a manager, and the rest of the band members are injured.
November 11: The British government agrees to fund development of the Rolls-Royce RB211 turbofan, rescuing the project from Rolls-Royce's bankruptcy.
November 14: Southern Airways Flight 932 crashes near Ceredo,West Virginia, killing all 75 on board. The dead are 37 members of the Marshall University football team, eight of its coaches, 25 team boosters, and the crew of five.
Gulf Air Lockheed L-1011-200 TriStar (A40-TV) at  New York - John F. Kennedy International, United States
November 16: First flight of the Lockheed L-1011.
November 20: In Operation Ivory Coast, the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Army assault North Vietnam's Son Tay prison camp to free prisoners-of-war thought to be there, but none are found. Large air raids are conducted to divert North Vietnamese attention from the assault.
December 9: Artem Mikoyan, the designer of many MiG aircraft, dies at the age of 65.
December 15: Artem Mikoyan, founder of the dynasty of MiG fighters, dies.
December 18: Airbus Industrie is formally established to develop the Airbus A300; it is comprised of Aérospatiale, Deutsche Airbus, Fokker and Hawker Siddeley.
December 20: With pre-tax losses of $US 130 million, the year ends as the worst ever for US airlines.
December 21: First flight of the Grumman YF-14A.

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