Faster Than A Speeding Bullet - The quest for speed from the early aviators to dreams of aircraft of the future. This is the story of Air Speed records and the advances in technology which have contributed to the various aviation successes and failures. On the bitterly cold morning of December 17th. 1903, Orville Wright coaxed the Wright Flyer off the sands at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina and launched the era of powered flight. He also launched a race that has gone on unceasingly ever since; the race for ever more speed. Thirty-five years later, at the start of World War Two, fighter aircraft were flying at around 300 miles per hour. A dozen years later Chuck Yeager doubled that speed and broke the dreaded sound barrier, in the Bell X1. By The 1970's ordinary fare paying passengers were crossing the Atlantic faster than a speeding bullet, in the Concorde. 52 minutes
Your Flight In Their Hands - You are sitting in the departure lounge. You've been through all the hassle of baggage check in, and passport and security checks. Now you've got a few minutes to catch a breather and a cup of coffee before your flight is called. You'll be in New York or Chicago or Atlanta in a few hours and meeting so and so. Or will you? We take flight safety entirely for granted. We can scarcely bother to pay attention to the in flight security briefing. Should we be so casual? Every plane that lifts off has to negotiate a dozen hazards to arrive at its destination safely, from the increasingly crowded airspace around every major airport, to storms and high altitude jet streams en route, not to mention technical failure. The fact that accidents are so few is due to the immense professionalism, of the people who have your flight in their hands. 52 minutes.