Aircraft

Big air: Highlights from EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2014

Big air: Highlights from EAA A...
Chinese Nanchang trainers flying formation (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Chinese Nanchang trainers flying formation (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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At this year’s airshow a flock of Breezy’s were on hand to celebrate their 50th anniversary (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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At this year’s airshow a flock of Breezy’s were on hand to celebrate their 50th anniversary (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The cockpit of a Stemme S10 glider at Oshkosh 2014 (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The cockpit of a Stemme S10 glider at Oshkosh 2014 (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
According to the Honda rep, the company had received over 200 orders for the HondaJet as of last Tuesday with delivery dates set for sometime in 2017 (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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According to the Honda rep, the company had received over 200 orders for the HondaJet as of last Tuesday with delivery dates set for sometime in 2017 (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Gannet was originally designed as an anti-submarine hunter but later adapted to deal out electronic countermeasures and take on delivery roles (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The Gannet was originally designed as an anti-submarine hunter but later adapted to deal out electronic countermeasures and take on delivery roles (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
At this year’s airshow a flock of Breezy’s were on hand to celebrate their 50th anniversary (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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At this year’s airshow a flock of Breezy’s were on hand to celebrate their 50th anniversary (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
At this year’s airshow a flock of Breezy’s were on hand to celebrate the fiftieth year of their inception into the aviation world (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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At this year’s airshow a flock of Breezy’s were on hand to celebrate the fiftieth year of their inception into the aviation world (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
A gathering of Breezy’s taxiing down the runway (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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A gathering of Breezy’s taxiing down the runway (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Capable of flying at 35 mph (56 km/h) on a good day, many of the Breezy's used boat wheels connected to chains for steering (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Capable of flying at 35 mph (56 km/h) on a good day, many of the Breezy's used boat wheels connected to chains for steering (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Unfortunately the reality of flying such fragile devices became all too evident when a Breezy crashed Thursday morning at the airfield, killing the pilot (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Unfortunately the reality of flying such fragile devices became all too evident when a Breezy crashed Thursday morning at the airfield, killing the pilot (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The highly anticipated US$4.5 million HondaJet made its production debut at Oshkosh last week (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The highly anticipated US$4.5 million HondaJet made its production debut at Oshkosh last week (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Twin GE Honda HF120 turbofan jet engines mounted on pods set away from the cabin are designed to reduce noise and vibration (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Twin GE Honda HF120 turbofan jet engines mounted on pods set away from the cabin are designed to reduce noise and vibration (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The HondaJet is billed as the world’s most advanced light jet (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The HondaJet is billed as the world’s most advanced light jet (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The metal model highlights some of the jet's distinctive design attributes (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The metal model highlights some of the jet's distinctive design attributes (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The new US$4.5 million luxury HondaJet (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The new US$4.5 million luxury HondaJet (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
With a wing span of just over 37 feet (12 m) and 66 cubic feet of storage space the HondaJet has room for a crew of two and four passengers (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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With a wing span of just over 37 feet (12 m) and 66 cubic feet of storage space the HondaJet has room for a crew of two and four passengers (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The HondaJet is capable of cruising at 420 knots (KTAS) for approximately 1180 nautical miles (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The HondaJet is capable of cruising at 420 knots (KTAS) for approximately 1180 nautical miles (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Twin GE Honda HF120 turbofan jet engines mounted on pods set away from the cabin are designed to reduce noise and vibration (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Twin GE Honda HF120 turbofan jet engines mounted on pods set away from the cabin are designed to reduce noise and vibration (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Cross section of the HondaJet on display at Oshkosh (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Cross section of the HondaJet on display at Oshkosh (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Stemme’s S10 glider holds the world record for "cross country soaring" (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Stemme’s S10 glider holds the world record for "cross country soaring" (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The S10's nose cone retracts during soaring, hiding the 115 hp Rotax engine out of sight (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The S10's nose cone retracts during soaring, hiding the 115 hp Rotax engine out of sight (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Stemme's S10 glider was part of the boutique plane exhibition at Oshkosh last week (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Stemme's S10 glider was part of the boutique plane exhibition at Oshkosh last week (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The S10 also includes a Garmin GPS 695 navigation system, electric trim indicators, acoustic stall warning sensors and a classic UMA engine instrumentation setup (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The S10 also includes a Garmin GPS 695 navigation system, electric trim indicators, acoustic stall warning sensors and a classic UMA engine instrumentation setup (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Stemme's S10 glider was part of the boutique plane exhibition at Oshkosh last week (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Stemme's S10 glider was part of the boutique plane exhibition at Oshkosh last week (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The S10 offers flyers a maximum cruise speed of 140 kt (260 km/h) and a range of 929 nautical miles (1,720 km).
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The S10 offers flyers a maximum cruise speed of 140 kt (260 km/h) and a range of 929 nautical miles (1,720 km).
Produced by Stemme of Germany the S10 is the only glider to feature a Rotax engine in the nose, allowing it to fly without the help of tow plane
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Produced by Stemme of Germany the S10 is the only glider to feature a Rotax engine in the nose, allowing it to fly without the help of tow plane
The S10's 115 hp Rotax 914 F Turbo engine pulls the plane unassisted to soaring altitudes (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The S10's 115 hp Rotax 914 F Turbo engine pulls the plane unassisted to soaring altitudes (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Stemme's dual-passenger glider sells for US$440,000, pricey for a glider but given its hybrid abilities it may well appeal to a select clientele (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Stemme's dual-passenger glider sells for US$440,000, pricey for a glider but given its hybrid abilities it may well appeal to a select clientele (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Produced by Stemme of Germany the S10 is able to fly without the help of tow plane (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Produced by Stemme of Germany the S10 is able to fly without the help of tow plane (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
IICON’s new A5 at EAA AirVenture
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IICON’s new A5 at EAA AirVenture
A marked up demo at the ICAN tent highlighted various engineering and aerodynamic aspects of the A5 (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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A marked up demo at the ICAN tent highlighted various engineering and aerodynamic aspects of the A5 (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The A5 has foldable wings for easy storage and transport (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The A5 has foldable wings for easy storage and transport (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The A5 uses a 100 bhp Rotax engine to help get the craft up to a top speed of 105 kts (120 mph/194 km/h) (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The A5 uses a 100 bhp Rotax engine to help get the craft up to a top speed of 105 kts (120 mph/194 km/h) (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
This two-passenger aircraft by ICON of California features amphibious qualities and foldable wings for easy storage (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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This two-passenger aircraft by ICON of California features amphibious qualities and foldable wings for easy storage (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
ICON debuted its first production version of the A5 at Oshkosh this past week (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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ICON debuted its first production version of the A5 at Oshkosh this past week (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
A standalone display cockpit clearly demonstrated how cues from the automotive industry had helped shape the A5’s interior design (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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A standalone display cockpit clearly demonstrated how cues from the automotive industry had helped shape the A5’s interior design (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The A5 will have a range of 300 nautical miles (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The A5 will have a range of 300 nautical miles (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Estimated price for the amphibious flying hot-hatch is expected to be around US$189,000 (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Estimated price for the amphibious flying hot-hatch is expected to be around US$189,000 (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The A5 has room for two (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The A5 has room for two (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The standalone display cockpit clearly demonstrated how cues from the automotive industry had helped shape the A5’s interior design (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The standalone display cockpit clearly demonstrated how cues from the automotive industry had helped shape the A5’s interior design (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Part fishing boat, part float plane, part flying camper, MVP's Aero was one of the most popular of the experimental craft at the show (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Part fishing boat, part float plane, part flying camper, MVP's Aero was one of the most popular of the experimental craft at the show (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Using a forward cabin/rear mounted engine design, MVP has re-imagined the idea of the typical amphibious flyer (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Using a forward cabin/rear mounted engine design, MVP has re-imagined the idea of the typical amphibious flyer (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
MVP designed the cockpit canopy to lift up and back, allowing users to fish out of the seat like a typical fishing boat (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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MVP designed the cockpit canopy to lift up and back, allowing users to fish out of the seat like a typical fishing boat (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
MVP designed the cockpit canopy to lift up and back, allowing users to fish out of the seat like a typical fishing boat (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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MVP designed the cockpit canopy to lift up and back, allowing users to fish out of the seat like a typical fishing boat (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Aero’s instrument panel is a self contained pod that once pivoted out of the way, enables users to fold over the “origami deck” that fully covers the seating area (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The Aero’s instrument panel is a self contained pod that once pivoted out of the way, enables users to fold over the “origami deck” that fully covers the seating area (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The foldable deck stretches from the bow to the baggage compartment giving occupants an area supposedly large enough to sleep on (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The foldable deck stretches from the bow to the baggage compartment giving occupants an area supposedly large enough to sleep on (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Using a forward cabin/rear mounted engine design, MVP has re-imagined the idea of the typical amphibious flyer (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Using a forward cabin/rear mounted engine design, MVP has re-imagined the idea of the typical amphibious flyer (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Running a Rotax 912 series rear-mounted push engine, MVP reports the carbon/glass composite Aero should have a maximum cruising speed of 14 kts and a climb rate of 1,000 fpm (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Running a Rotax 912 series rear-mounted push engine, MVP reports the carbon/glass composite Aero should have a maximum cruising speed of 14 kts and a climb rate of 1,000 fpm (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The plane, N927NA, had been in storage for over 40 years before making its comeback flight last year (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The plane, N927NA, had been in storage for over 40 years before making its comeback flight last year (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The WB-57 is capable of carrying payloads of 4,000 lb and has been used for high altitude weather research for Apollo space launches (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The WB-57 is capable of carrying payloads of 4,000 lb and has been used for high altitude weather research for Apollo space launches (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
With a wingspan and wing area coverage that would shame a herd of 787s, the big white flyer had the ability to reach altitudes of over 65,000 ft (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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With a wingspan and wing area coverage that would shame a herd of 787s, the big white flyer had the ability to reach altitudes of over 65,000 ft (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
NASA's high altitude WB-57 was initially designed as a Martin B-57 Canberra military bomber in the 1950s (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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NASA's high altitude WB-57 was initially designed as a Martin B-57 Canberra military bomber in the 1950s (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
And because of budget cutbacks, NASA is now loaning the N927NA out to various firms to perform their own atmospheric and satellite research (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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And because of budget cutbacks, NASA is now loaning the N927NA out to various firms to perform their own atmospheric and satellite research (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The WB-57 was used extensively by NASA for more scientific purposes in the 1960s (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The WB-57 was used extensively by NASA for more scientific purposes in the 1960s (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
NASA's high altitude WB-57 was initially designed as a Martin B-57 Canberra military bomber in the 1950s (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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NASA's high altitude WB-57 was initially designed as a Martin B-57 Canberra military bomber in the 1950s (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The last of the flying T5 Gannets (serial XT752) affectionately known as Janet has endured a number of retrofits and owner changeovers in its 60 years (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The last of the flying T5 Gannets (serial XT752) affectionately known as Janet has endured a number of retrofits and owner changeovers in its 60 years (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Gannet features a 3,145 hp (2,345 kW) Double Mamba powerplant which allowed pilots to operate on only one engine to extend range or conserve fuel (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The Gannet features a 3,145 hp (2,345 kW) Double Mamba powerplant which allowed pilots to operate on only one engine to extend range or conserve fuel (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Initially developed in 1953 for British aircraft carrier service and weighing in at a hefty 14,000 lb (6,382 kg) the Gannet featured dual-folding wings, retractable tri-wheel landing gear and contra-rotating, turboprop propellers (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Initially developed in 1953 for British aircraft carrier service and weighing in at a hefty 14,000 lb (6,382 kg) the Gannet featured dual-folding wings, retractable tri-wheel landing gear and contra-rotating, turboprop propellers (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The unconventional design of the Elytron 2S covers the three take-off scenarios and makes for a plane that is stronger and lighter and faster than a traditional helicopter (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The unconventional design of the Elytron 2S covers the three take-off scenarios and makes for a plane that is stronger and lighter and faster than a traditional helicopter (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The full sized display model showed one side with the craft’s unique box-wing configuration in place, while the other showed a cutaway of the planes unique rotating wing mechanism (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The full sized display model showed one side with the craft’s unique box-wing configuration in place, while the other showed a cutaway of the planes unique rotating wing mechanism (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The rotating wings and prop rotors on the Elytron plane (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The rotating wings and prop rotors on the Elytron plane (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Using fast prototyping and carbon composites, the company plans to throw a 450 bhp race engine in their plane and hopefully conduct tests next year (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Using fast prototyping and carbon composites, the company plans to throw a 450 bhp race engine in their plane and hopefully conduct tests next year (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The updated Osprey is aiming to take over for outdated helicopters and transport planes in the US Military's aging fleet (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The updated Osprey is aiming to take over for outdated helicopters and transport planes in the US Military's aging fleet (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The US Marines MV-22 Osprey was one of the most impressive aeronautical pieces of the show – static or flying (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The US Marines MV-22 Osprey was one of the most impressive aeronautical pieces of the show – static or flying (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Featuring tilt-rotors and sporting huge 38 ft (11.6 m) helicopter sized blades, the multi-functional Osprey has the capability to transport 24 combat troops (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Featuring tilt-rotors and sporting huge 38 ft (11.6 m) helicopter sized blades, the multi-functional Osprey has the capability to transport 24 combat troops (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Osprey can carry 20,000 lb (9,071 kg) of cargo (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The Osprey can carry 20,000 lb (9,071 kg) of cargo (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Osprey uses twin Rolls Royce turboshaft engines to produce 6,150 hp (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The Osprey uses twin Rolls Royce turboshaft engines to produce 6,150 hp (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Post taxi the Osprey showed off its short runway take-off capabilities, followed up by a demonstration of its high speed agility (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Post taxi the Osprey showed off its short runway take-off capabilities, followed up by a demonstration of its high speed agility (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Osprey's tiltrotor design (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The Osprey's tiltrotor design (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Although the Osprey has had its share of accidents and design issues over the years Boeing is confident that the current version, with its redundant engine back-up system and fly-by-wire system, will help it replace aging helicopters and certain transport aircraft (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Although the Osprey has had its share of accidents and design issues over the years Boeing is confident that the current version, with its redundant engine back-up system and fly-by-wire system, will help it replace aging helicopters and certain transport aircraft (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
To demonstrate its helicopter-like abilities the pilot proceeded to hover and rotate on the spot, even backing up to further show off its handling prowess (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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To demonstrate its helicopter-like abilities the pilot proceeded to hover and rotate on the spot, even backing up to further show off its handling prowess (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Taxiing down the runway with rotors in the upright position, the Osprey stands 22 ft tall (6.7 m) from tarmac to rotor hub, making it one of the most visually dominating pieces at the show (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Taxiing down the runway with rotors in the upright position, the Osprey stands 22 ft tall (6.7 m) from tarmac to rotor hub, making it one of the most visually dominating pieces at the show (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The CarterCopter by Carter Aviation (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The CarterCopter by Carter Aviation (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The CarterCopter was being promoted as a faster, more fuel efficient alternative to comparable flying machines (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The CarterCopter was being promoted as a faster, more fuel efficient alternative to comparable flying machines (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Personal Air Vehicle (PAV) prototype has a claimed top speed of 245 mph (394 km/h) at 25,000 ft. uses a 350 hp turbocharged Lycoming IO-540 engine (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The Personal Air Vehicle (PAV) prototype has a claimed top speed of 245 mph (394 km/h) at 25,000 ft. uses a 350 hp turbocharged Lycoming IO-540 engine (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
This next-gen gyrocopter features a 45 foot diameter rotor up top that matches the unit’s wingspan and a stubby rear tail where the horizontal stabilizer hosts a rudder and twin winglets (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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This next-gen gyrocopter features a 45 foot diameter rotor up top that matches the unit’s wingspan and a stubby rear tail where the horizontal stabilizer hosts a rudder and twin winglets (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The CarterCopter is reportedly capable of carrying 4,000 lb (1,814 kg) from a jump takeoff and 5,000 lb (2268 kg) from a rolling take off (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The CarterCopter is reportedly capable of carrying 4,000 lb (1,814 kg) from a jump takeoff and 5,000 lb (2268 kg) from a rolling take off (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
This P-38 Lightning, nicknamed "Glacier Girl", was abandoned on Greenland in 1942 alongside six other planes...it took rescue teams four months to to dig her out of 268 feet of snow and ice using innovative extraction methods (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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This P-38 Lightning, nicknamed "Glacier Girl", was abandoned on Greenland in 1942 alongside six other planes...it took rescue teams four months to to dig her out of 268 feet of snow and ice using innovative extraction methods (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
During restoration, salvagers discovered that after sitting under hundreds of feet of snow and ice for 50 years, most of Glacier Girl's key components and architecture had been twisted, broken or squished (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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During restoration, salvagers discovered that after sitting under hundreds of feet of snow and ice for 50 years, most of Glacier Girl's key components and architecture had been twisted, broken or squished (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
From 1992 to 2002 restorers had to either fabricate new or track down original parts from various collectors (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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From 1992 to 2002 restorers had to either fabricate new or track down original parts from various collectors (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
After ten years of exhaustive restoration, the twin-tailed, center cockpit designed Glacier Girl finally flew again in 2002, marking 60 years since it crashed on the coast of Greenland (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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After ten years of exhaustive restoration, the twin-tailed, center cockpit designed Glacier Girl finally flew again in 2002, marking 60 years since it crashed on the coast of Greenland (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Designed by the famous aviation pioneer, Louis Bleriot, this replica at Oshkosh represented one of the earliest achievements in aviation history (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Designed by the famous aviation pioneer, Louis Bleriot, this replica at Oshkosh represented one of the earliest achievements in aviation history (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Blériot was influential in the European aviation community back in the early 1900s (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Blériot was influential in the European aviation community back in the early 1900s (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Blériot replica was close enough in design and frailty to give a legitimate sense of respect for the people who flew them (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The Blériot replica was close enough in design and frailty to give a legitimate sense of respect for the people who flew them (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
In spite of its age, creations like this help provide context around the amount of innovation and ingenuity that went into building such flying machines (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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In spite of its age, creations like this help provide context around the amount of innovation and ingenuity that went into building such flying machines (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
In low visibility and without a life jacket or proper navigational tools Blériot managed to make the English Channel crossing in 1909 (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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In low visibility and without a life jacket or proper navigational tools Blériot managed to make the English Channel crossing in 1909 (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Louis Blériot was one of the more influential aviation pioneers of the early 19th century (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Louis Blériot was one of the more influential aviation pioneers of the early 19th century (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The degree of insanity and/or bravery to make the 22 mile (35 km) flight from France to Dover on that day in 1909 must have been significant (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The degree of insanity and/or bravery to make the 22 mile (35 km) flight from France to Dover on that day in 1909 must have been significant (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
T6 Harvard trainer used by most allied nations during WWII (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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T6 Harvard trainer used by most allied nations during WWII (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Russian Yak 9U (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Russian Yak 9U (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Chinese Nanchang trainers flying formation (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Chinese Nanchang trainers flying formation (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
B-25 bomber performing faux bombing runs (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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B-25 bomber performing faux bombing runs (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Japanese Zero (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Japanese Zero (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
One of two B-17 Flying Fortresses on site during the show (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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One of two B-17 Flying Fortresses on site during the show (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
B-17 top gun (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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B-17 top gun (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
US Navy Corsair with wings in upright position (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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US Navy Corsair with wings in upright position (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Japanese Zero with static B-17 in background (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Japanese Zero with static B-17 in background (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
B-17 nose turret and bombadier nest (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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B-17 nose turret and bombadier nest (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Two of a dozen P-51 Mustangs on site during the Oshkosh show (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Two of a dozen P-51 Mustangs on site during the Oshkosh show (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Curtiss P-40 Warhawk (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Curtiss P-40 Warhawk (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
One of three P-38 Lightnings in attendance (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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One of three P-38 Lightnings in attendance (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
P-38 featured twin engines with a center mounted cockpit (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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P-38 featured twin engines with a center mounted cockpit (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
B-25 bomber covered at night (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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B-25 bomber covered at night (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
B-25's signature twin tail (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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B-25's signature twin tail (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
A B-25's underbelly (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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A B-25's underbelly (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The only British Spitfire in attendance (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The only British Spitfire in attendance (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
One of the more famous P-51 Mustangs on the field of fighters (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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One of the more famous P-51 Mustangs on the field of fighters (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
P-51 showing kills from WWII (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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P-51 showing kills from WWII (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
A trifecta of grazing P-51 Mustangs (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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A trifecta of grazing P-51 Mustangs (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The P-38 Lightning was one of the fastest of the US Airforce's arsenal during WWII (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The P-38 Lightning was one of the fastest of the US Airforce's arsenal during WWII (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Various experimental planes from the Rutan brothers hang on the wall at the Oshkosh air museum (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Various experimental planes from the Rutan brothers hang on the wall at the Oshkosh air museum (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Replica of the Voyager's cockpit; the first plane to fly around the world non-stop (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Replica of the Voyager's cockpit; the first plane to fly around the world non-stop (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Various concept and prototype aircraft populate the museum (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Various concept and prototype aircraft populate the museum (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
One of the early air racers hangs in the museum (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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One of the early air racers hangs in the museum (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Bugatti flyer, one of the more radical designs in the museum (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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The Bugatti flyer, one of the more radical designs in the museum (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Oshkosh's air museum is one of the world's most well-rounded historical aviation spaces (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Oshkosh's air museum is one of the world's most well-rounded historical aviation spaces (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
A humorously proportioned flying yellow car on exhibit (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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A humorously proportioned flying yellow car on exhibit (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Early gyrocopter on the museum floor (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Early gyrocopter on the museum floor (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Scaled down replica of an early pontoon air racer (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Scaled down replica of an early pontoon air racer (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Seaplane bay provided camping and harbor for overnight pilots (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Seaplane bay provided camping and harbor for overnight pilots (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Located roughly 20 minutes south of Oshkosh, this small cove provides a haven for float planes (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Located roughly 20 minutes south of Oshkosh, this small cove provides a haven for float planes (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Scaled down replica of an early pontoon air racer was one of the more unique finds at the Seaplane base (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Scaled down replica of an early pontoon air racer was one of the more unique finds at the Seaplane base (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Seaplane cove at the south end of Lake Winnebago provides harbor and shelter to pilots attending the airshow (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Seaplane cove at the south end of Lake Winnebago provides harbor and shelter to pilots attending the airshow (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
A cockpit barely big enough to fit a 5'7'' individual (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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A cockpit barely big enough to fit a 5'7'' individual (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
A rare amphibious US military plane waits out the rain (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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A rare amphibious US military plane waits out the rain (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Seaplane cove at the south end of Lake Winnebago (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Seaplane cove at the south end of Lake Winnebago (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Another seaplane waiting out the weather (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Another seaplane waiting out the weather (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Chinese Nanchang trainers flying formation (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
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Chinese Nanchang trainers flying formation (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

The Experimental Aircraft Association's fly-in airshow held annually at the Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, is one of the largest and most anticipated events of its kind in the world. With a history that stretches back more than 60 years, this aviation spectacular now attracts over half a million aircraft enthusiasts, along with some 10,000 planes, helicopters and experimental aircraft of all eras. Gizmag joined the multitudes on the shores of Lake Winnebago for EAA AirVenture 2014 – here's our look at the highlights.

Having grown up building models of P51 Mustangs, P38 Lightnings, B25 bombers and most anything WWII related, to be standing in a field surrounded by aircraft of this ilk was nothing short of a surreal. That my Dad flew Harvard’s in training during WWII out of Moose Jaw only added to exhilaration of seeing roughly a dozen fly in formation around the airfield. Throw in some modern luxury like the new Honda Jet, a smattering of homebuilt aircraft, conceptual gyrocopters, a legendary 50 year old NASA research jet, one or two half million dollar gliders and cutting edge designs like the amphibious ICON A5 and I was in the middle of an aviation-themed religious experience.

Picking highlights from a show of this caliber is easier said than done, but here is a taste of some of the sights that kept enthralled throughout the week.

50 years of the Breezy

Capable of flying at 35 mph (56 km/h) on a good day, many of the Breezy's used boat wheels connected to chains for steering (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Capable of flying at 35 mph (56 km/h) on a good day, many of the Breezy's used boat wheels connected to chains for steering (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

Designed by Carl Unger and friends back in 1964, the Breezy celebrated its 50th anniversary at this year’s EAA AirVenture.

HondaJet

The new US$4.5 million luxury HondaJet (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The new US$4.5 million luxury HondaJet (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

On the other side of the aviation spectrum, Honda’s new HondaJet made its production debut at Oshkosh. The new US$4.5 million luxury aircraft is a definite departure for the outfit better known for producing Civics.

With a sophisticated glass flight deck, Over-The-Wing Engine Mount (OTWEM) configuration, natural-laminar flow wing and fuselage nose and composite fuselage, the HondaJet is billed as the world’s most advanced light jet. It has a wing span of just over 37 feet (12 m), 66 cubic feet of storage space, room for a crew of two and four passengers and is powered by two GE Honda HF120 turbofan engines that take it to a cruising speed of 420 knots (KTAS) for approximately 1180 nautical miles.

According to the Honda rep at the show, the company has received over 200 orders for the HondaJet. Delivery dates are set for sometime in 2017.

Stemme S10 Glider

The S10's 115 hp Rotax 914 F Turbo engine pulls the plane unassisted to soaring altitudes (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The S10's 115 hp Rotax 914 F Turbo engine pulls the plane unassisted to soaring altitudes (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

If flying about in silence and soaring like the proverbial eagle is your thing, then perhaps you’ll want to check out the US$440,000 S10 dual-passenger glider. Located amongst the million dollar luxury jets at Oshkosh, the S10 from Stemme of Germany is a glider with a difference. though – it features a Rotax engine in the nose and retractable, spring loaded propellers. When activated on take-off, the nose cone slides forward allowing the 115 hp Rotax 914 F Turbo engine to pull the plane to soaring altitudes.

With the engine engaged the S10 offers flyers a maximum cruise speed of 140 kt (260 km/h) and a range of 929 nautical miles (1,720 km). In terms of avionics, the S10 features a LX9000 soaring computer with both a stick remote and AHRS for the system, plus a Garmin GPS 695 navigation system, electric trim indicators, acoustic stall warning sensors and a classic UMA engine instrumentation setup.

Stemme’s S10 glider also holds the world record for "cross country soaring," with Klaus Ohlmann flying it 2,463 km (1,530 mi) in approximately 14 hours over the Andes.

ICON A5

ICON debuted its first production version of the A5 at Oshkosh this past week (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
ICON debuted its first production version of the A5 at Oshkosh this past week (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

The ICON A5 two-passenger amphibious aircraft debuted in production form at Oshkosh this year. The aircraft features foldable wings for easy storage and a 100 bhp Rotax engine to help get the carbon composite hulled craft up to a top speed of 105 kts (120 mph/194 km/h).

The standalone cockpit display clearly demonstrated how cues from the automotive industry have helped shape the A5’s interior design. Instrumentation and console setup could have come from any number of performance exotics, and the side-by-side seating and overall ergonomic lay-out also indicate an automotive influence.

Icon reports the A5 will have a range of 300 nautical miles (345 mi/ 555 km) when the first customer takes delivery of their plane in May of 2015. Estimated price for the amphibious flying hot-hatch is expected to be around US$189,000.

MVP Aero

Using a forward cabin/rear mounted engine design, MVP has re-imagined the idea of the typical amphibious flyer (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Using a forward cabin/rear mounted engine design, MVP has re-imagined the idea of the typical amphibious flyer (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

Another of the show’s more interesting amphibious offerings was MVP’s Aero. Part fishing boat, part float plane, part flying camper, the Aero was on display in Oshkosh’s experimental section as well as at the hidden seaplane hideout located 20 minutes south of the airport.

Using a forward cabin/rear mounted engine design, MVP has re-imagined the typical amphibious flyer into one where users can fish off the front on their favorite lake, or using the optional tent package, can park the Aero on shore where it can be used for camping.

As well as a cockpit canopy that lifts up and back to allow users to fish out of the seat like a typical fishing boat, the engine can be run to navigate about waterways to select fishing holes. The Aero’s foldable wings are designed with high lift capabilities to enable shorter take offs and landings. To navigate docking, with wings folded, the tri-phibian’s on-board trolling motor and bow thrusters also enable the craft to park just like a regular fishing boat.

The Aero’s instrument panel is a self contained pod that once pivoted out of the way, enables users to fold over the “origami deck” that fully covers the seating area. The foldable deck stretches from the bow to the baggage compartment giving occupants an area large enough to sleep on, according to MVP.

Running a Rotax 912 series rear-mounted push engine, MVP reports the carbon/glass composite Aero should have a maximum cruising speed of 14 kts and a climb rate of 1,000 fpm.

NASA WB-57 High Altitude Research Plane

The WB-57 is capable of carrying payloads of 4,000 lb and has been used for high altitude weather research for Apollo space launches (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The WB-57 is capable of carrying payloads of 4,000 lb and has been used for high altitude weather research for Apollo space launches (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

NASA stopped by the show with its high altitude WB-57. Derived from the Martin B-57 Canberra in the 1950s as a military bomber, the plane on display at Oshkosh was used extensively by NASA for scientific purposes in the 1960s.

With a wingspan and wing area coverage that would shame a herd of 787s, the big white flyer had the ability to reach altitudes of over 65,000 ft. (12 mi/19 km) and fly at speeds over 650 mph (1,046 km/h) in its day. Capable of carrying payloads of 4,000 lb the WB-57 was used for everything from high altitude weather research for Apollo space launches to gathering high atmosphere radiation samples from nuclear testing plumes.

The plane on display at Oshkosh, N927NA, had been in storage for over 40 years before making its comeback flight last year. That hiatus made it the longest plane to have sat in Arizona’s “Boneyard” before returning to the air. NASA is now loaning the N927NA out to various firms to perform their own atmospheric and satellite research.

Fairey Gannet

The Gannet was originally designed as an anti-submarine hunter but later adapted to deal out electronic countermeasures and take on delivery roles (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Gannet was originally designed as an anti-submarine hunter but later adapted to deal out electronic countermeasures and take on delivery roles (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

Another throwback to the cold war era with a design only an engineer could love, the British Airforce’s Fairey Gannet is anything but pretty. Decked out in a two-tone orange and black paint scheme and sitting next to the elegantly styled WB-57, the unusual looking workhorse with the big torpedo holding belly was initially developed in 1953 for British aircraft carrier service. Weighing in at a hefty 14,000 lb (6,382 kg) the Gannet features dual-folding wings, retractable tri-wheel landing gear and contra-rotating, turboprop propellers.

Designed as an anti-submarine hunter the aircraft was later adapted to deal out electronic countermeasures and take on delivery roles. The Gannet also had the ability to operate on only one engine were the pilots required to extend range or conserve fuel.

Featured in Oshkosh’s center staging area, the last of the flying T5 Gannets (serial XT752) affectionately known as Janet has endured a number of retrofits and owner changeovers in its 60 years. Only 340 Gannets were produced from 1953-1959.

Elytron Concept

The rotating wings and prop rotors on the Elytron plane (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The rotating wings and prop rotors on the Elytron plane (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

Another concept plane to catch our eye was Elytron’s highly unconventional 2S Tiltrotor. This radical design from Elytron Aircraft of California was located on-site at the show but only in semi-complete concept form. The full-sized display model showed one side with the craft’s unique box-wing configuration in place, while the other showed a cutaway of the planes unique rotating wing gearing.

Although the Prandtl wing box dates back to the early 19 century, the rotating wings and prop rotors on the 2S are designed to give it conventional take-off and landing, plus vertical and short take-off and landing capabilities. According to Elytron this unconventional design not only covers the three take-off scenarios but also makes for a plane that is stronger and lighter than similar craft while being faster than a traditional helicopter.

Using fast prototyping and carbon composites, the company plans to throw a 450 bhp race engine in its plane and conduct tests next year. There are also plans to build a 7-seat version of the box-winged aircraft.

Osprey MV-22

To demonstrate its helicopter-like abilities the pilot proceeded to hover and rotate on the spot, even backing up to further show off its handling prowess (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
To demonstrate its helicopter-like abilities the pilot proceeded to hover and rotate on the spot, even backing up to further show off its handling prowess (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

As impressive as the Elytron tilt-rotor concept is, it pales in comparison to its monstrous cousin, the MV-22 Osprey. Thirty-two years after it was developed, the US Marines VTOL multi-tasking aircraft was still one of the most impressive exhibits of the show – static or flying.

Featuring tilt-rotors and sporting huge 38 ft (11.6 m) helicopter sized blades, the multi-functional Osprey has the capability to transport 24 combat troops, carry 20,000 lb (9,071 kg) of cargo or lift and move up to 15,000 lb (6,804 kg) of cargo externally thanks to twin Rolls Royce turboshaft engines that produce 6,150 shaft hp. The Osprey has a maximum speed of 250 kts (463 km/h / 287 mi) and a range of 390 nautical miles (722 km / 448 mi) when carrying a full troop deployment.

During its 20 minute flight demonstration at Oshkosh the Osprey, which stands 22 ft tall (6.7 m) from tarmac to rotor hub, certainly showed off its versatility, from short runway take-off capabilities to high speed agility and hovering prowess.

Although the Osprey has had its share of accidents and design issues over the years Boeing is confident that the current version, with its redundant engine back-up system and fly-by-wire system, will help it replace aging helicopters and certain transport aircraft.

CarterCopter

The CarterCopter was being promoted as a faster, more fuel efficient alternative to comparable flying machines (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The CarterCopter was being promoted as a faster, more fuel efficient alternative to comparable flying machines (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

Next to the US military’s svelte, bristly Apache attack copter we spied one of the show’s oddest participants – the CarterCopter.

Designed by Carter Copters" target="_blank">Carter Aviation Technologies

, the Personal Air Vehicle (PAV) prototype with its claimed top speed of 245 mph (394 km/h) at 25,000 ft uses a 350 hp turbocharged Lycoming IO-540 engine that is reportedly capable of carrying 4,000 lb (1,814 kg) from a jump takeoff and 5,000 lb (2268 kg) from a rolling take off.This next-gen gyrocopter also features a 45-ft diameter rotor up top that matches the unit’s wingspan and a stubby rear tail where the horizontal stabilizer hosts a rudder and twin winglets.

Glacier Girl P-38 Lightning

After ten years of exhaustive restoration, the twin-tailed, center cockpit designed Glacier Girl finally flew again in 2002, marking 60 years since it crashed on the coast of Greenland (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
After ten years of exhaustive restoration, the twin-tailed, center cockpit designed Glacier Girl finally flew again in 2002, marking 60 years since it crashed on the coast of Greenland (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

One of my favorite warbird recovery stories has to be that of the P38 Lightning, known as “Glacier Girl.” Set amongst two other P38s at Oshkosh’s Warbird alley, the recovered green Lightning was one of five fighters and two B17’s that had to ditch on Greenland due to inclement weather in 1942.

For over 50 years the P38 sat in the snow alongside the other aircraft. In that time over 268 feet of snow covered the plane, making locating and recovering it near impossible. But in 1992 a team using innovative ice melting and recovery techniques managed to burrow their way down to one of the P38s. Workers, using steam hoses carved out a cave around the Lightning, which once uncovered, had to be disassembled in order to fit up through the access shaft.

During restoration, salvagers discovered that as a result of sitting under hundreds of feet of snow and ice for fifty years, most of the plane’s key components and architecture had been twisted, broken or squished. Over the next ten years restorers were left having to either fabricate new parts or track down original parts from collectors. But after ten years of exhaustive restoration, the Glacier Girl finally flew again in 2002.

Blériot Replica

The Blériot replica was close enough in design and frailty to give a legitimate sense of respect for the people who flew them (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
The Blériot replica was close enough in design and frailty to give a legitimate sense of respect for the people who flew them (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

Designed by the famous aviation pioneer, Louis Bleriot, this replica sitting amongst various pre and post-war aircraft represents one of the earliest aviation achievements. Although not identical to the plane flown by Blériot in his English Channel Crossing feat, the replica on the grassy grounds in Oshkosh was close enough in design and frailty to give one a legitimate sense of appreciation for the amount of sheer stupidity and bravery it must have taken to make the 22 mi (35 km) flight from France to Dover on that day in 1909.

WWII Warbirds

A B-25's underbelly (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
A B-25's underbelly (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

The P-51 Mustang, considered one of the greatest planes of the Second World War was on hand by the dozen at this year’s EAA AirVenture.

But while the Mustang with its 435 mph (700 km/h) top speed and agility was one of the show’s great warbird examples, it was not to be outdone by a couple of Corsair’s, one Japanese Zero, two Russian Yaks, a tri-fecta of P-38 Lightnings, Harvards in various trim and two B-17 Flying Fortresses.

EAA Airventure Museum

One of the early air racers hangs in the museum (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
One of the early air racers hangs in the museum (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

Featuring the likes of the Wright Brothers finest creation, Charles Lindbergh’s Spirit of St. Louis, gyrocopters, early day air racers and memorabilia from an assortment of manufacturers, the Oshkosh air museum is one of those must see spaces for anyone remotely interested in the history of aviation.

On Thursday, Dick Rutan, co-pilot of the record breaking Voyager was at the museum recounting his non-stop flight around the world back in 1986. With a replica of Voyager’s cockpit/cabin as a backdrop, Rutan recalled how over nine long days, he and his co-pilot Jeanna Yeager (who cut her hair in order to save a quarter of a mile) had to deal with hostile countries, bad weather, ill tempered engines and communication issues. He also shared just how disconcerting it was to fly a 110 ft wingspan vehicle with 7,010 lb of fuel on takeoff and the joys of being cramped into a cockpit not much bigger than a phone booth for the duration of the 26,366 miles (42,432 km) flight.

Even though most of the museum’s collection dates back decades, it provides important context and perspective to visitors on how innovation and creativity have shaped aviation over the years. If you’re in the Oshkosh region I highly recommend a quick detour to the relatively innocuous building off Highway 45 to get better a sense of the technological achievements, and failures, that have occurred over the past 100 plus years.

Seaplane Cove

Scaled down replica of an early pontoon air racer was one of the more unique finds at the Seaplane base (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)
Scaled down replica of an early pontoon air racer was one of the more unique finds at the Seaplane base (Photo: Angus MacKenzie/Gizmag.com)

I almost bypassed it on my way back to Milwaukee, but thanks to a small sign and a guy named Dusty I found the magical bay where float planes and their pilots reside during AirVenture.

Located roughly 20 minutes south of Oshkosh at the far south end of Lake Winnebago, this tiny secluded harbor provides safe refuge for dozens of float planes from the winds and weather that occasionally hit the region. Dusty explained to me how the site is basically a smaller, more intimate version of the big show. Featuring pared down amenities the retreat provide pilots with camping, food vendors, and the chance to see "Frozen" at 9:30 on the big outdoor screen.

Check the gallery for more highlights from the 2014 EAA AirVenture Oshkosh airshow.

2 comments
Martin Hone
Yep, one of the greatest shows on Earth ! Pity about the Breezy that crashed and killed its pilot, though appearances are deceptive - nothing flimsy about the aircraft.
Earthforce1
Great pics. My jaw hit the ground when I saw the Fairey Gannet. Would have loved to see it in flight.