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Did You Know

1. The custom was started by World War I pilots. The scarves prevented skin irritation that otherwise was caused by rubbernecking (looking behind for enemy aircraft) while wearing heavy, scratchy uniform shirts (to keep warm at cold altitudes).

2. True. An airship is any lighter-than-air aircraft that is powered and steerable. A Zeppelin is any of many rigid airships designed by Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin. a blimp is not rigid. The terms airship and dirigible (from directable) are synonymous.

3. It is (or was) an organization of flight crews whose lives have been saved after ditching by the use of emergency dinghies or rafts.

4. According to the Outer Space Treaty of 1967, airspace sovereignty ends where out space begins. This altitude has yet to be legally fixed, but varies between 85 and 100 nm. It most often is regarded as 90 nm.

5. Oil tends to collect in the bottom cylinders of radial engines. Attempting to start an engine at such a time results in hydraulically locked cylinders that can cause structural damage. Slowly turning the propeller by hand before starting allows pooled oil to drain harmlessly through the valves.

6. The warm fuel weighs 5.70 pounds per gallon, and the cold fuel weighs 5.93 ppg. (refer to the FAA's Aircraft Weight and Balance Handbook.) The cold fuel, therefore, is 4 percent more dense than the warm fuel and would increase range by this amount.

7. when propping the engine without anyone in the cockpit. There is enough time to get in the airplane and turn on the fuel before the engine fails. this reduces the possibility of a runaway airplane. Ensure that the aircraft is chocked and tied down before starting.

8. The center of gravity of a taildragger is behind the main landing gear instead of ahead of it (as in the case of a trike). The taildragger behaves like a child's tricycle that is shoved backwards and then released. (Shove it hard enough and it will ground loop.)

9. False. An early flying automobile to be certified was the Airphibian (1950), which was conceived and designed by Robert Edison Fulton Jr. It took less than five minutes to convert the airplane into an automobile and vice-versa. another was the Aerocar, which was certified six years later.

10. True. The Concorde does not have flaps per se, but its six elevons droop for takeoff and landing to increase wing camber. Effectively, therefore, the Concorde has flaps.

11. True. The Franch-born German engineer Rudolf Diesel (1858-1913) developed the "pressure-ignited heat engine" between 1885 and 1898.

12. True. The Waco-designed glider was towed across the Atlantic by a Douglas C-47 and piloted by Squadron Leader R.G. Seys of the Royal Air Force in June 1943 for delivery to Russia.

13. Germany's Erich Hartmann (World War II, 352 victories). America's greatest ace is Richard Bong (World War II, 40 victories).

14. The original tower (now at the base of the TV tower) was designed as a mooring mast for transatlantic airships. Gusty winds at 1,350 feet asl (above street level) resulted in several unsuccessful mooring attempts, and the idea was abandoned.

15. The practic originated at Fort Benning, Georgia, by members of the 505th Infantry Battalion who attended the 1939 motion picture Geronimo the night before their first jump.

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