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Significant aircraft manufacturing began on Long Island in the early 20th century and boomed during the war years. Long Islanders helped transform aviation from a dangerous sport to a viable means of transportation, while also producing a large portion of the nation's aerial arsenal in times of war. From the first frail biplanes to the warbirds of World War II and the sleek fighters of the jet age, aviation companies on Long Island helped make aviation the integral part of our world that it is today. During the 20th century, over 70 firms came to build aircraft on Long Island. Some of these firms lasted for decades and became famed builders of historic aircraft, such as Grumman, Republic, Curtiss, Fairchild, and Sikorsky.
During the first fifty years of American aviation, Long Island was at the center of aircraft innovation and flight. There were more aircraft manufacturers and airports located on Long Island than in any other part of the United States. Due to the extraordinarily high volume of air traffic, Long Island also led the country-if not the world-in aircraft crashes. Long Island Aircraft Crashes: 1909-1959 portrays the daring flights, accidents, and mishaps of pioneer pilots, and the conditions that contributed to many crashes. Long Island ultimately saw the earliest air-traffic control systems, airport lighting, aviation weather reports, paved runways, and professional flight schools. Long Island Aircraft Crashes: 1909-1959 contains captivating images from Mitchel Field and Roosevelt Field, the two most active airfields on Long Island. In addition to airfield activity, this book illustrates some of the first experimental flights over Hempstead Plains; military training at Hazelhurst Field; the L.W.F. Owl bomber (the largest landplane of its time); the world's first instrument-guided flight; and Amelia Earhart posing with the new Sperry Gyropilot.
Farmingdale, located in west-central Long Island on both sides of the Nassau-Suffolk County border, was an important center of airplane manufacturing from the First World War until almost the end of the Cold War. Aviation pioneers like Lawrence Sperry, Sherman Fairchild, Leroy Grumman, Alexander de Seversky, and Alexander Kartveli directed the manufacture of aircraft, aircraft engines, and key subassemblies as they evolved from the propeller, biplane era to the jet and space age. Farmingdale witnessed the creation of such cutting-edge aircraft as the Sperry Triplane Amphibian and Messenger; the Fairchild FC-2; the Grumman FF-1, JF-1 Duck, and G-22 Gulfhawk; the Seversky P-35; the Republic Aviation P-47, F-84, and F-105; and the Fairchild Republic space shuttle tails and A-10 Warthog. Airplane manufacturing in Farmingdale ended in 1987 with the demise of Fairchild Republic, but this book offers a comprehensive pictorial history of the outstanding achievements of so many talented men and women over seven decades.
In 1961, after the United States had acquired a total of fifteen minutes of spaceflight experience, President John F. Kennedy announced his plans for landing a man on the moon by 1970. The space race had begun. In 1962, after a strenuous competition, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) announced that the Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation of Bethpage, Long Island, had won the contract to build the lunar module-the spacecraft that would take Americans to the moon. This was the first, and the only, vehicle designed to take humans from one world to another. Although much has been written about the first men to set foot on the moon, those first hesitant steps would not have been possible without the efforts of the designers and technicians assigned to Project Apollo. Building Moonships: The Grumman Lunar Module tells the story of the people who built and tested the lunar modules that were deployed on missions as well as the modules that never saw the light of day. This is the first publication to chronicle the visual history of the design, construction, and launch of the lunar module-one of the most historic machines in all of human history.
Long Island's location and terrain gave it a significant role in defending the United States for over two hundred years. Forming the eastern shore of New York City's harbor, Long Island provided sites for seaward defense, while its flat, grassy plain was an ideal location for airfields. Many fortifications, encampments, and defense factories were built on Long Island. Long Island's Military History-with more than two hundred vintage photographs-traces this unique history, beginning with the battle of Long Island in 1776 and continuing through the cold war into the 1980s. This fascinating visual history tells of places such as Roosevelt Field and Plum Island, whose military uses have been forgotten; Camp Wikoff and Hazelhurst Field, short-lived military sites; and Grumman and Republic, names once associated only with combat aircraft.
Over 250 rare photographs depict one of the greatest industrial feats of all time: America's massive production of World War II fighters and bombers. An introduction and captions outline the history.
The in-flight explosion of TWA Flight 800 on July 17, 1996, was one of the deadliest disasters in American history, spurring the most expensive airline investigation ever undertaken by the U.S. government. To this day the crash remains clouded in doubt and shadowed by suspicion of a government conspiracy. If there was any conspiracy to hide the truth about what really happened to Flight 800, it began long before the crash. Past crashes tell the story: What happened on Flight 800 has happened before and will again, unless drastic changes are made. Now veteran journalist Christine Negroni reveals what the commercial aviation industry has known for more than thirty-five years that during flight confined vapors in the fuel tanks can create a bomb like environment. It takes only a small energy source to ignite it. TWA Flight 800 was the fourteenth fuel tank explosion on a commercial airliner in thirty-five years. Yet each and every time, the airline industry persuaded regulators to deal with the symptoms of the problem and ignore the cause. When investigators could not immediately determine what happened, they were finally forced to look at the bigger picture. And, for the first time, this book exposes the hubris of aircraft manufacturers who knew all along, but dismissed as acceptable, the risk of fuel tank explosions. Deadly Departure shines a spotlight on the chaos behind the most massive crash investigation ever conducted, how the White House had to intervene between feuding investigators, and the surprising stories behind the missile theory conspiracies. It also tells the stories of the passengers and their families, the people of TWA and Boeing, the rescue and crisis workers, and the investigators and scientists involved illustrating the devastating effects on human lives. An impeccably researched, eye-opening examination of one of the great disasters of our time, Deadly Departure is a stunning exposé of how industry pressure continues to undermine regulatory policy, placing air travelers' lives at risk.

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