Browsing: Vehicles

A Brief History On August 18, 1940, an air battle was fought between the British RAF and the German Luftwaffe, the largest air battle in history to that point as part of the Battle of Britain, July 10 through October 31, 1940. Digging Deeper German planners knew they had to defeat British air defenses in order to defeat Britain, and the best way to make that happen was to destroy the RAF Fighter Command.  Despite September 15, 1940, being known as “Battle of Britain Day,” the purported climax of the Battle of Britain, it was “The Hardest Day” that saw…

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A Brief History On August 17, 1978, Ben Abruzzo, Maxie Anderson, and Larry Newman made ballooning history by becoming the first to pilot a manned balloon across the Atlantic Ocean, flying from Maine to France in the Double Eagle II, a Helium balloon.  Today, we take a look at a few momentous balloon flights. Digging Deeper On November 21, 1783, the first ever manned balloon flight took place in France, when Francois Pilatrê de Rozier and Francois Laurent took flight in a hot air balloon made by the Montgolfier brothers.  In 1785, Jean-Pierre Blanchard and American John Jeffries made history…

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A Brief History On August 12, 2000, during the first major Russian naval exercise since the break-up of the USSR, the Russian Oscar II class cruise missile sub, the Kursk, blew up and sank in the Barents Sea, taking all 118 men aboard to their deaths. Digging Deeper Another of the incidents we call “Naval Oops Moments” in which naval vessels are accidentally damaged or destroyed, the investigation into the sinking found that a torpedo defect caused the initial explosion and subsequent fire that caused a second, much larger explosion that sank the sub.  The second explosion seems to have…

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A Brief History On August 8, 2004, Chicago’s Little Lady, a tour boat carrying 120 passengers, was bombed by a tour bus belonging to the Dave Matthews Band.  About 2/3 of the passengers were soaked with human waste dumped from the bus as it crossed the Kinzie Street bridge over the Chicago River in Chicago, Illinois. Digging Deeper Only the driver was aboard the bus and he decided to dump the waste from the toilets into the Chicago River as he crossed the bridge, the bridge made of open metal grates, and the driver claims he had no idea the…

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A Brief History On August 2, 1870, the Tower Subway opened for passenger traffic in London, England, the first ever underground tube type railway commonly called a “subway” in the US and “the tube” in the UK. Digging Deeper Not to be confused with a fast food store, a subway is a rail train for carrying passengers in underground tunnels.   Using coal or wood powered steam engines, or even gasoline or diesel engines to power the train would be problematic underground.  The Tower Subway was propelled by a cable system with no onboard propulsive power. Most subways today are electric…

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