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that the mail could be flown coast to coast at night.
Many quickly realized that bonfires were an inadequate means of nighttime
navigation and something better was needed.
navigation 15 ASCI 254 – Module 3: Pioneers
1918 First airmail
1918 – August 12 Transcontinental
1920 – Sept 8 Congress
for lighting system
1923 Regularly scheduled
airmail service began
1924 – July 21 1923 - Congress appropriated funds for the construction of a system
of sequential lighting on the transcontinental airmail route. The first
lighting segment was built from Chicago to Cheyenne. Aircraft
launched at dawn on either coast would reach the lighted segment
by nightfall. The mail would then continue on the lighted segments at
night. Red and green rotating beacons were placed on 50 ft towers
every 10 miles that flashed its own location code.
July 1, 1924 - Regularly scheduled transcontinental airmail service
began. The service took 34 hours from New York to San Francisco
and 29 hours from San Francisco to New York.
The lighted airway system was completed coast to coast. This was
just the beginning of viable commercial aviation. Still needed were
better engines, better aircraft designs, instruments, financing, and
acceptance by the public.
acceptance 16 ASCI 254 – Module 3: Pioneers
Engine Development Timeline
1903 Liberty &
1919 First air-cooled
1923 200 HP J-5 called
1925 - Dec 400+ HP Wasp
1926 - March 1903 - Charlie Taylor built the aircraft engine for the Wright Flyer.
1919 - The Packard Automobile Company designed and built the Liberty engine
which powered the De Havilland DH-4.
1919 - The Wright-Martin Company in New Jersey built Hispano-Suiza engines.
October 1919 – The Wright-Martin Company became known as the Wright
1923 – The Lawrance Co...
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