Browsing: Inventions

A Brief History On June 26, 1936, the Focke-Wulf Fw 61 made its first flight as the world’s first practical helicopter. Introduced into service with the Luftwaffe soon afterwards, the Fw 61 only had 2 copies built, but was a harbinger of things to come. Attempts to invent practical helicopters had been going on for decades, and in various countries, including contemporaneous with the Fw 61. Company namesake Professor Henrich Focke had invented various flying machines, including auto gyros prior to his collaboration with Gerd Achgelis, but the two engineers decided auto gyros were not quite the end result they…

A Brief History On June 15, 1936, the Vickers Wellington twin engine bomber made its maiden flight. The bomber would be produced from 1936 until the end of World War II in 1945, with a massive production run of well over 11,400 copies, over 4 000 more than the larger and more famous 7377 Avro Lancasters built. The Wellington was quickly found to be inadequate for a role as a daylight heavy bomber but proved highly effective in other roles as a medium bomber, both versatile and resilient. Digging Deeper Designed by inventive genius Barnes Wallis, the guy that gave…

A Brief History On June 13, 1817, Karl Drais of Germany invented a contraption he called the “Laufmaschine,” German for “running machine” as the two wheeled single rider vehicle was powered by the rider scooting his feet along the ground. Also known as a “draisine” (German) or “draisienne” (French), this earliest form of bicycle later became known broadly as a “velocipede,” a term covering all types of bicycles and other people powered ground vehicles. Drais patented his invention in France in 1818, and the name continued to evolve to become known as “The Dandy Horse.” Digging Deeper The evolution of…

A Brief History On June 9, 1959, the United States Navy launched the USS George Washington, the first ballistic missile submarine capable of launching nuclear missiles. We used that occasion to publish the article “10 Weapons Milestones (Modern Systems that Changed the Game)” in which we named 10 of the most interesting and important advances in weaponry of the 19th and 20th Centuries. Today we list 10 more of those weapons and or weapons systems, and we branch out to include the 21st Century and Olden times as well. As always, please share your nominations for other weapons we could…

A Brief History On June 5, 1944, the British RAF plastered the Normandy coast of France with 5000 tons of bombs dropped by over 1000 bombers in preparation for the D-Day landings the next day. The bombing failed to destroy the German defenses, and the further bombing of the German “Atlantic Wall” after midnight on D-Day (June 6, 1944) by 2000 allied bombers also failed to achieve any particular benefit, especially due to cloudy conditions and bombers being extra cautious to avoid dropping bombs on Allied troops taking part in the landings, causing the bombs to fall too far inland…

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