The 51st edition of the Paris Air Show got off to a rather gloomy start, with a gray sky threatening to spoil all the static and in-the-air fun. Thankfully, the rain never appeared and Gizmag joined spirited show-goers for a gawk at some splendid show spectacles.

Though Canada's Bombardier CS300 airliner certainly brightened up the heavy skies above Le Bourget on Monday, it was Boeing and Airbus that dominated the headlines and the show. Both companies secured multi-billion dollar deals by the time trading ended, with Reuters reporting that a last-minute deal put the locals ahead by almost US$7 billion.

Malloy Aeronautics announced the next chapter in the development of its four-rotor Hoverbike, with Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford revealing a new partnership with Survice Engineering at the Maryland booth. Chris Malloy's firm will now open a US office and develop the vehicle as a Tactical Reconnaissance Vehicle for the US Department of Defense.

Dassault's mighty Rafale fighter jet again dominated the air, but it wasn't quite as entertaining as the aerobatics of the Director of the Musée de l'Air et de l'Espace, Catherine Maunoury, flying an Extra 330 monoplane.

Other show highlights included a short, virtually silent, flight from the E-Fan electric demonstrator, the near vertical climb of the monstrous Airbus A400M military transporter and the forward, backward, up and down antics of the NH90 Caiman combat helicopter.

The Paris Air Show runs until June 21, but if you can't make it to Le Bourget airport in person, have a wander through our show gallery for some tasty treats on the ground and in the air.

View gallery - 70 images