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On This Day: September 18

Aviation events for September 18

1928: The 1st rotating-wing aircraft to fly the English Channel is the Cierva C-8L Autogyro flown by its designer, Spaniard, Juan de la Cierva.
1928: The 1st flight of the Zeppelin LZ-127 Graf Zeppelin is made. It is the most successful rigid airship ever built, flown commercially on a regular basis from Europe to South America. It flies over a million miles and carries some 13,100 passengers before its demise in 1940.
1947: The U.S. Air Force becomes an independent service within the unified U.S. armed forces. This change recognizes the fact that air power is to be the nation's 1st line of defense.
1948: The 1st flight of a delta-wing jet airplane is made with the Convair XF-92A.
1959: The Douglas DC-8 enters service with Delta Air Lines and United Air Lines.
1968: First flight of the McDonnell Douglas DC-9-20.
1968: First flight of the Boeing 737-200C.
1976: Death of legendary test pilot Albert Boyd.
1984: Joe Kittinger makes the first solo transatlantic balloon flight, from Carbon, Maine to Savona, Italy.
2002: First flight of the GE90-115B, world's most powerful jet engine.

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