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First Flights of Helicopters
In 1907, about four years after the Wright brothers' first successful powered flights in fixed-wing airplanes at Kitty Hawk in the United States, a French bicycle make named Paul Cornu constructed a vertical flight machine that was reported to have carried a human off the ground for the first time. The airframe was very simple, with a rotor at each end. Power was supplied to the rotors by a gasoline motor and belt transmission. Each rotor had two relatively large but low aspect ratio blades set at the periphery of a large spoked wheel. The rotors rotated in opposite directions to cancel torque reaction. The 24-hp engine used in the machine was hardly powerful enough to have sustained hovering flight out of ground effect.
The FAA World From The Perspective of Air Traffic
At any given moment there are approximately 5,000 aircraft traversing the U.S. skies.The FAA is a year-round, 24/7 operation, responsible for 5.3 million square miles of U.S. domestic airspace and 24 million square miles of U.S. airspace over the oceans. There are 43,290 average daily flights in and out of the U.S. More than 14,000 air traffic controllers manage traffic from many of the FAA’s 700 facilities. Fifty-five hundred airway transportation system specialists maintain more than 70,000 pieces of equipment.Aviation contributes $1.6 trillion annually to the U.S. economy and constitutes 5.1 percent of the gross domestic product. Aviation generates 10 million jobs in the U.S. annually.