Introduction: The Coming Of The Jets (06:21)
Jets were developed for military use, entering service during World War II. Modern types flew at Mach2, reached high altitudes, and were highly maneuverable; the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird attained Mach3 speeds. De Havilland offered the first jetliner services; the supersonic Concorde makes transatlantic flights in three hours.
Technology Race: Initial Designs (06:55)
Frank Whittle conceived aircraft gas turbines in the 1920s; he established Power Jets Company to engineer and produce the concept. The Gloster Whittle first took flight in May 1941. In 1939, Junkers produced a jet engine, and collaborated with Dr. Ernst Heinkel to create the Heinkel He 178.
Technology Race: Rocket Propulsion
The German Heinkel He 176 was the first rocket aircraft, produced in 1939; the Me 163 Komet entered service in late summer of 1944. The Japanese developed the Yokosuka Ohka, a kamikaze missile used to attack carrier ships.
Technology Race: Wartime Advances (07:17)
In 1943, Adolf Gallet tested the Messerschmitt Me 262; in July 1944, it entered service. The British Gloster Meteor first flew in March 1943, entering service immediately to intercept V-1 Flying Bombs. In January 1944, engineer Kelly Johnson’s P-80 Shooting Star exceeded 500 miles per hour during trial flights.
British Reverse Engineering (07:12)
During the spring of 1945, England obtained German planes and aviation technology; they studied the Messerschmitt Me 262 and Junkers Jumo turbine engine. In September 1946, a new airspeed record was attained by the Gloster Meteor IV. The DH 106 Comet jetliner entered British Overseas Airways Corporation in 1952.
International Progress (03:03)
In April 1946, Russian jets Yakovlev Yak-50 and Mikoyan Gurevich MiG-9 shared a maiden flight. The French Sud-Ouest Triton debuted in November 1946. The United States developed the Ryan Fireball and Consolidated Vultee XP-81 prototypes; the Republic F-84 Thunderjet and McDonnell FH-1 Phantom naval jet entered service in 1946.
American Speed Race (06:04)
In June 1947, the Army’s Colonel Albert Boyd raised the airspeed record by eight miles per hour. The Navy’s Turner Caldwell made 640 miles per hour, and Marine Corp’s Marion Carl reached 650 miles per hour in August. The Air Force’s Bell X-1 broke the sound barrier that October.
Gaining Height (02:30)
The North American F-86 Sabre was the first swept winged fighter, and supersonic combat craft produced, entering service in 1948; it featured a pressurized cabin. In February 1948, John Cunningham flew a De Havilland Vampire to 60,000 feet. In 1951, Bill Bridgeman attained 75,000 feet in a Douglas Skyrocket.
Air Combat (06:08)
The Korean War broke in June 1950; the United States had piston and jet engine craft based in Japan. North Korea obtained the superior Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15 from Russia. On November 8th, 1950, Lieutenant Russell Brown shot one down; American ace pilots won high speed dogfights with veteran skills.
Credits: The Coming Of The Jets (00:43)
Credits: The Coming Of The Jets
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