Aeronautics, May 1908

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published monthly by

AMERICAN MAGAZINE OF AERONAUTICS CO. Ernest LaRue Jones, Editor and Owner Thoroughfare Building, 1777 Broadway, New York, U. S. A.

Vol. II May, 1908 No. 5

Arronautics is issued on the tenth of each month. It furnishes the latest and most authoritative information on all matters relating to Aeronautics. Contributions are solicited.

SUBSCRIPTION RATES. One year, $3.00; payable always in advance.

Subscriptions may be sent by express, draft, money order or registered lelter. WE CAN NOT USE CHECKS ON LOCAL BANKS UNLESS EXCHANGE IS ADDED. Send draft on New York Make all remittances free ot exchange, payable to Aeronautics. Cuirency forwarded in unregistered letters will be at sender's risk.

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Important.—Foreign money orders received in the United States do not bear the name of the sender. Foreign subscribers should be careful to send letters of advice at same time remittance is sent to insure proper credit.


Furnished on application. The value of Aeronautics as an advertising medium is unquestioned.



The age of aerial navigation is here. The year 1907-S has seen numerous demonstrations of practical dynamic flight. The June number of Aeronautics will be its twelfth regular issue and it is but fitting that the only journal in America devoted to the art should celebrate the anniversary of its inception— coincident with the dawn of the new medium for travel.

it^rS^It being safe to assume that the following year will be more prolific than the one just closing with this publication, everyone interested should subscribe to keep up to date with what is going on in the art.


Some have asked why we do not use more illustrations. We haven't space. This magazine is the American journal of travel by air—not a picture book. To quote the Sage of Kast Aurora, " We'll waste no time on parties who cannot see a point unless it is illustrated.-"



The following" was to have been published in the April number but appropriation was killed by, we understand, the West Virginia coal and railroad interests' representative, SENATOR ELK1XS, before we went to press. Another year must elapse before a second appeal can be made. Let us hope that in the meantime Congress and the Senate may realize the error of their ways.

In view of the importance of the subject and that it will apply for next year we are printing this—keep it before you for a People's Congress and a People's Senate.

The United States Government has a War Department created by the citizens of this country, to see to it that we keep abreast of the times with regard to means of defense and offense.

There is also a House of Representatives and a Senate created by the citizens, to see to it that out of the money devoted by them through taxation to the running of the Government, the War Department is furnished with the necessary funds to keep up to date.

As regards the application of aeronautical science to defense and offense, we are making no efforts of our own, while France, England, Germany and Italy are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars, and getting value received.

Recalling a recent article in "Omnia" by M. Emanuel Aime, "What will it profit a nation to become mistress of all the seas if a rival nation succeeds in gaining the mastery of the 'Grand Ocean,' the only one truly worthy of this name—of the ocean which has no bounds and whose borders extend above the entire surface of the earth? The French Minister of War over a decade ago subventioned the 'Avion,' the first motor-driven aeroplane to rise in the air with a man, which it did as long ago as 1897, or six years before the first flight of the Wright Brothers."

The War Department asked for funds, a moderate $200,000. The House of Representatives has refused the request. There is still the Senate on which to base meagre hopes.

Our duty is to advise our representatives at Washington that we desire our War Department to be granted their (our) request.

You are urged to write a letter to your Senator, similar to the following and mail it at the earliest possible moment. Sir:

I desire to call your attention to the fact that the clause appropriating $200,000 for aeronautical purposes was striken from the Fortification Bill by the House Committee.

I would respectfully request you to use your influence to restore this item of $200,000 which was asked for by the War Department, to the place from which it was removed by the House Committee? The United States of America must keep up with other world powers in the development of aeronautics for military use and for national defense.

Of interest, also, is the fact that the International Aeronautical Congress, held October 28 and 29, at The Automobile Club of America, New York, passed the following resolution, a copy of which was ordered transmitted to President Roosevelt:

"RESOLVED, by the International Aeronautical Congress assembled together at New York, that the President of the United States be requested to call the attention of Congress to the advisability of providing the departments of the Government charged with these duties, funds sufficient to establish aeronautical plants commensurate with those of other nations."


Dr. Alexander Graham Bell, Mr. Octave Chanute, Professor A. Lawrence Rotch and Mr. James Means have organized a plan for the securing of a $25,000 prize fund by means of hundred dollar subscriptions. A call for funds has been issued, of which the following is a copy.

We have repeatedly urged the need for an aviation prize in this country and all efforts from any source have thus -far failed of accomplishment. Let us hope that this new and business-like appeal will meet with a prompt response.

International Sport With Flying Machines.

When Robert Fulton's steamboat first plied the waters of the Hudson any one who

had predicted the achievements in steam navigation which were destined to follow would have been deemed a visionary. If, at the time George Stephenson ran his locomotive engine from Stockton to Darlington, some person had given rein to his imagination and, ignoring flood and mountain, had conjured up a transcontinental "train de luxe," he would perhaps have been considered amusing, probably nothing more than that.

So, at the present day, it avails nothing for the enthusiast to make predictions concerning the future utility and value of the flying machine or of the possibilities of its revolutionizing human affairs.

Considering the present stage of development of the dynamic flying machine, the question is, what are the possibilities for it which are clearly in sight?

Making no predictions concerning economical transportation or military operations, and holding to conservatism in statement, we may assert that the flying machine now offers remarkable opportunities for international sport.

During the last fifty or sixty years yachts have been designed and sailed in a spirit of generous rivalry. The highest type of cruising yacht propelled by sails is the direct result of the competition between the designers of the earlier racers. Of course there came a time when the practical cruisers were left behind by the racing machines, but up to that time the racing was developing the best type of boat.

It is a fine showing as the outgrowth of competition in sport.

Having this in view, we may confidently assert that when those who are the patrons of yachting contests will extend their patronage to contests in the air, the science of aviation will progress rapidly.

International rivalry arouses enthusiasm and thousands take pleasure in witnessing an international contest. The devotees of pure science may well take the high ground that "science knows no country," but when it comes to applied science, international rivalry gives a needed stimulus and incites men to take the rich material which the pure scientists have furnished and to apply it under a waving flag.

Just now the French are witnessing flights which are not to be seen in our country. We ought to see them here and we could see them here, provided we could do as the French have done and raise a large prize fund. Having that, we could invite the French aviators to come to our country and compete. If they come over and win they will teach us much, but we should do all in our power to excel them. In any event they should be made to know that if they come over they will have the same cordial welcome which has been given to the British yachtsmen who from time to time have come over here to compete for the America's cup.

If we are to do anything important this year no time should be lost.

To Those Interested in Aviation.

The undersigned believe that it is possible to find two hundred and fifty persons who will contribute one hundred dollars each toward an Aviation Prize Fund of twenty-five thousand dollars.

Are you willing to be one of the number?

Under no circumstances will subscriptions be payable before August ist, 1908; if the entire sum mentioned, or a larger one, is not subscribed on or before that date your subscription will be considered cancelled.




Washington, D. C.





Boston, April. 1908.

» Subscription.



Box 167, Back Bay P. O., Boston, Mass. I hereby conditionally subscribe the sum of one hundred dollars to the / American Aviation Prize Fund.


No payment to be made before August ist, 1908.

A notice is to be mailed to me on that date, stating the total amount of subscriptions received. If the total amount is less than $25,000 my subscription is void. If the total amount is $25,000 or more the amount of my subscription will then be payable to the Aero Club of America.

At the conference held in New York, April 18th, on the American Aviation Prize Fund, the following being present: Dr. Alexander Graham Bell, Mr. Octave Chanute, Professor A. Lawrence Rotch and Mr. James Means, a resolution was passed to the effect that the Aero Club of America be requested to lend its co-operation toward the securing of the fund, to act as custodian, and to arrange the rules and conditions for its award.


$1,000 offered by the municipality of Dieppe as the nucleus of an aviation prize; contest to be held at Dieppe at the time of the Grand Prix automobile race over the Dieppe Circuit, July 6-7.

$1,000 has been offered by the Aviation Section of the Aero Club of France to the aviator who flies the greatest distance before September 3. Minimum distance must be that made by the winner of the Montefiore prize.

$1,000 instituted by tlve municipality of Kiel for an international contest for flying machines on June 28. The duty set is to travel from one point to another, hover for one minute, and return to the start. Three trials are allowed.

$500 has been offered by M. Montefiore, to be held by "the Aero Club of France, to the aviator who flies the greatest distance in a closed circuit before June 30. Minimum distance must be 5 kilometers. Entrance fee, $5. notice to be given a day previous.

$440 has so far been raised towards the "25-meter" prize of the Aero Club of France. To win this the machine must rise to an altitude of at least 25 meters. A row of small balloons or kites will be placed at right angles to the direction of the wind and the machine will have to "jump'' this hurdle. Entrance fee is $5, notice to be given to the club the evening before.

A complete list of aviation prizes was published in the April number.


The rules for the 1908 share of this prize have been settled by the Aero Club of France. The winner of the annual prize of $4,000 and the $2,000 cup for 1908 will be given to the aviator who flies the greatest distance, exceeding 20 kilometers, before December 31. Trials may be made between 10 a. m. and noon, and between 2 p. m. and sunset. Entrants must send in notice two days in advance, with an additional day's notice for each one hundred kilometers which the selected spot is distant from Paris. The entrance fee of $20 must be paid for each day a trial is made. If the event takes place at a greater distance from Paris than 20 kilometers the candidate must pay the expenses of four officials. The course may be selected by the contestant and marked with three or four posts. The greatest diameter of the circuit must not exceed 1 kilometer. The start to be made between two posts 50 meters apart, and the completion will be reckoned at the last post passed in full flight. An official must be stationed at each post. The prize is open for competition by any one under the control of an affiliated club.


The Aéronautique Club de France has organized a model competition to be held at the Galerie des Machines, Paris, on June 21. $100 has been offered in prizes.

The first aerostatic contest of the club for the year resulted in starting six balloons.


Two of the German contestants have now been named: Oscar Erbsloh, the winner of last year's race, representing the Berlin Club; and Captain Hugo von Abercron, representing the Lower Rhine Club. An elimination race will be held on May 10 to select the third contestant from among the members of the Cologne club.

The jury is composed of the following: Herr Busley, Major Gross, Major Moede-beck, Captain Hildebrandt and the French delegate, not yet named.

The starters will be Herr Gradenwitz and Lieut, von Selasinski.


Scientific American CORNU HELICOPTER.

Paul Cornu, assisted by a hundred and twenty-five friends, who gave each one hundred francs (.total, $2500), planned to build a machine to try to win the Deutsch-Arch-deacon $10.000 prize, now gone to Farman.

Cornu has been experimenting with model helicopters for several years and was able to make a model weighing about 30 pounds, fitted with a 2 horsepower motor. lift itself and travel horizontally.

The framework of this first full sized machine is principally a central steel tube of large size, mounted on a 4-wheeled chassis, forming a wide angle "U," braced with longitudinal cables running from end to end over 6-tube "stars" arranged along the main large tube. The length of the whole apparatus is 6.2 meters (20.34 ft.).

In the center sits the aviator, behind a 24 horsepower Antoinette motor. At either side of the operator are the levers for operating the engine and working the two steering and propelling planes at each end beyond the propellers. In front of the engine is a tank of water holding 12 litres (3 gallons) for thermo-siphon circulation. Above the motor is the oil tank. Behind the operator is a reservoir holding 7 litres (1^4 gallons) of gasolene under pressure. Under the aviator's seat is the batter}'.

At flie ends of this main tube are the two large wire-spoked ball bearing pulleys, 1.8 meters (5.9 feet) diameter, the face of the pulley being a steel plate 1 mm. (.039 inch) thick and 100 mm. (3.93 inches) wide. These wheels or pulleys have aluminum hubs. They not only serve to transmit the power from the motor by means of a leather belt, crossed, 22 meters (72 feet) long, but serve as the central body of each of the two 2-bladed propellers. Above the engine is a plate of aluminum, mounted on 4 steel tubes, on which are affixed, on ball bearings, the two driving pulleys.

The propeller blades are of silk with rubber lining, stretched over a steel tube frame. The length of the blade is 1.8 meters C5.9 feet) and the greatest width o.g meter (2.95 feet). The propellers are of variable pitch and the change is accomplished by means of wire cables attached from the edges of the pulley to the rearmost edge of the blade.

The device for propulsion and direction consists of two planes mounted fore and aft beyond the propellers. The propulsion of the apparatus is obtained by the action of the air pressed by the propellers against these planes, the slant of the planes being regulated by the operator. These planes are 2.5 meters (8.2 feet) long by 60 centimeters (1.97 feet) wide. They are arranged to pivot on a horizontal axis passing through their center and mounted on two supports extending out from below the center of the pulley hub. The inclination of the planes causes lateral displacement of the machine, and by swinging them to the desired point the helicopter can be made to turn to the right or left.

The sustention of the whole apparatus is obtained by the rotation at a speed (varying) of about 90 revolutions per minute of the two vertical propellers (i. e., propellers whose axes are vertical). In the recent experiments, sustention has been obtained as soon as the motor developed 12 horsepower, which is only one half its rated capacity.

The results obtained are, shortly, stated as follows: Weight, including the aviator, 260 kilos (573 lbs.); the sustaining surface of the blades', 6 square meters (64.58 sq. ft.); power used, 13 h.p.; weight lifted per horsepower, 20 kilos (44.09 lbs.); weight lifted per square meter of supporting surface, 45 kilos (8.84 lbs. per sq. ft.); traction given by


the planes, 15 kilos (33 lbs.) average; ascensional force absorbed by the vertical reaction of the air on the planes, 7 kilos (15.43 lbs.).

The Machine Rises.

On March 26th, 190S, more than two hundred people saw the machine rise into the air 40 centimeters (1.31 feet) at Coquainvilliers, near Lisieaux, in Normandy. Some trials of propulsion were made, but they did not give the expected result. The inventor had to struggle against a strong wind. However, the apparatus moved forward and backward.

Previous Experiments.

Three hundred experiments tiave been made and about fifteen of them have been successful. The great lightness thought necessary has not allowed the apparatus to withstand without damage these repeated trials. The results, however, obtained have proved conclusive enough to cause the inventor to start work upon a second apparatus

of the same type but modified—smaller, more simple, the construction to take about four months. The inventor believes that it is not necessary to make the apparatus as large, and that a helicopter with two propellers of 3 meters diameter, turning with a proper speed, might raise a man without expending more than 15 horsepower, if the total weight is not above 300 kilos. The inventor's first plan was to build a machine with small propellers at high speed, but he decided that it was too much of a departure from known laws.

In the present machine the blades have had to be loaded with sheets of lead, placed for two-thirds of their length, beginning from the center, to balance the lifting force by the centrifugal force. It was then necessary to provide for the equilibrium of the propellers with great precision. The apparatus moved from right to left as soon as the propellers acquired speed. A weight of 55 grams was placed at the end of one blade and 75 grams on the other. Then, when the engine was speeded up, the belt slipped and the driving pulleys had to be lined with leather.

On August 31, 1907, the apparatus was able to rise with a speed of 70 turns of the propellers, the engine turning at 750 per minute. The apparatus was loaded with a 50 kilo (110 lb.) bag of sand placed on the seat. The belt still slipped, and the diameter of the driving pulleys was increased to 1' centimeters (7.08 inches). On September 27th, 1907, the whole was raised 235 kilos (518 lbs.), the propellers turning at 85, the


motor at 850, while the pitch of the propellers was 3 meters (9.84 feet).

On November 13, 1907, the first time the machine rose with the inventor aboard, remaining about a foot oft" the ground for several minutes, descending through slipping of the belt. The screws made 90 and the motor 900.

Lifts Two Men.

In the afternoon of the same day another trial was made, but the front rose higher than the rear and the inventor's brother hung on to the chassis at the rear and was also lifted a distance of about 5 feet. The weight lifted in this instance was 328 kilos (723 lbs.)

Further trials were made, but great trouble was had with the slipping of the belt, and the machine not able to stay in the air more than a minute. On December 4 the whole apparatus rose, all four wheels leaving simultaneously, to the limit of the ropes which were attached after the November 13th trial.

A rubber belt was next tried, which removed the slipping difficulty, but so many trials had been made that the machine had been greatly weakened and it was decided to build the second machine.

Theoretically, with the propellers turning at 100, the planes at 450, the apparatus should attain a speed of 25 to 30 kilometers per hour.


By Victor Silberer, Editor of the Wiener Luftschiffer-Zeitung.

Seven years ago, when the first number of my "Wiener Luftschiffer-Zeitung" (Vienna Journal for Aeronauts) appeared, considerable surprise was evinced in some quarters by the sub-heading, "Special Journal for Aeronautics and the Art of Flying."

"The Art of Flying"?

Well, to-day there are but few who do not admit that the words were correctly chosen, though the few at that time may have been somewhat premature. To-day not one of those, perhaps, who with an attentive eye have followed the many recent attempts at aviation, will deny the fact that "flying" is an art indeed.

Tt is, however, an art that is still in its very earliest infancy, an art whose greatest artists are but too well aware that they have yet everything to learn and that they have an intensely arduous and perilous task to achieve in spite of the jubilant cry of theordicians about the problem being solved.

Progress Due to Motors.

But the most remarkable point jn the matter is that the great progress and success attained ill so short a time in aviation and with dirigible balloons, is not attributable to the conception of aeronautics or aviation at all, but to the manufacture of engines for motor-cars. These modern light motors were originally constructed to meet the exigencies of automobiles, but are at present also employed for carrying out the ideas of aeronauts and aviators in the domain of dirigible balloons and flying machines.

If our poor old Kress here in Austria, at the time when he was in a position to spend the money needful for his "kite-flyer," had been able to obtain one of the modern light motors, his labors and attempts would no doubt have been rewarded with greater success.

The admirably light motors with which aviators are at present provided, may assuredly be regarded as the chief incentive to the construction of numerous flying machines which, whatever may be said against them, enable their inventors and constructors to effect real flights, though ever so short and uncertain, ever so perilous and unreliable.

In all these attempts and trials, however, it will be seen that a motor, whatever its weight may be, and an aviator, however well constructed, and furnished with such a motor, will not suffice to enable a mechanical contrivance to wing its flight successfully, but that there is a third and all-essential condition, and that is—the art of flying, which he who makes aviatic attempts of this kind will have to learn at the daily and hourly hazard of his sound limbs and life, even with the most promising machine.

The Training of The Aviator.

This art, more than any other, will require active energy, courage, decision of purpose, a quick eye and clearness of judgment, utmost presence of mind; also an enormous amount of patience, assiduity and perseverance; and finally, efficient training and physical dexteritj'.

The practical aviator must be endowed with a portion of these qualities at the very outset of his experiments, namely, all the above cited moral virtues in addition to general manual skilfulness and bodily aptitude. Adroitness in managing the technical contrivances and an accurate knowledge of the working capacity of his machine in the air, the peculiarities of its movement, its reaction on all possible influences while flying, the influence exercised by the aviator's different operations upon the action of the machine, the manner of steering, the force needed for the different operations, the innumerable points to be taken into account; all these will, only by long continued indefatigable practice on the part of numerous incipient aviators, lead to such experience as can be embodied in general principles of aviation and which will save much trouble and risk to future beginners.

These pioneers and pathfinders, however, who are now exploring this alluring "terra incognita" from which as yet no beacon of practical experience is sending forth its cheering light, have set themselves a sky-aspiring task as stupendous as it is difficult.

The Dangers.

Even the trials and preliminary practice hitherto show through what extreme

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dangers to limbs and lives the disciples of the fascinating art of aviation must expose themselves. Even now, when—most reasonably^they are only trying to glide cautiously along on quite even ground, at a height of but a few metres, downfalls of the gravest and most formidable kind occur. More than one of the bold aspirants to the realms of thin air has encountered accidents in which his life was only saved as by a miracle. But how will it be when once they go beyond the first preliminary attempts? When they are placed before the task of passing from these incipient experiments made, so to say, in the workshop, on the even, unobstructed practising ground, to tha infinitely graver and more difficult evolutions above the ordinary pathways of earth, at/a height which enables us to rise above terrestrial obstacles, to soar above trees, forests, buildings, cities, what peril of life to the aviator if the motor should stop or any part of the propelling mechanism fail.

By far the majority of the apparatus now used for experiments, such as all those constructed with a cellular or bat-like arrangement, all of which maintain themselves in air only so long as they are propelled with great velocity, do not sink slowly when the motor stops, but are precipitated to the ground like a lump of lead.

How many then will be the accidents, how great will be the loss of life, before sufficient experience has been acquired for producing an apparatus which does not capsize or lose its equilibrium under any circumstances?

And ii; the event of a sudden failing of the propelling force, of the steerage, or other vital part of the mechanism, will it be possible in these trials with the present apparatus of small superficies, at some considerable height to effect a smooth and safe landing and to preclude catastrophies through contingencies of any kind.

Let us then pay homage to the men who, with iron energy and at the constant risk of their lives, devote their services to the development of aviation and to the acquisition of this newest but most serious and perilous art—the art of flying.


The end of March the weather was rainy and blustery and little work was done on the field.

On March 24th Delagrange made a flight of 1800-2000 meters. In the afternoon Farman made a double loop of at least 3 kilometers. No poles were erected and the flights were not official. The Farman flight covered the extent of the ground, passing above the heads of the spectators. An official trial was asked for the following day.

On the 25th he succeeded in flying a kilometer-loop at rather a considerable height,-12 meters. The stability was perfect. The official trial, however, was postponed. Gus-

Scientific A merican


tave Zittel, manager of one of the Paris music halls, was on the field on horseback and raced with the aeroplane. Farman was able to distance the horse easily on account of the turns. x

In conversation with a correspondent Delagrange said: "Just imagine that within a week I was able to complete my education as an aviator. On the 17th I won by 260 meters the '200-meter prize' offered by the Aero Club of France to encourage beginners; and on the 21st I covered in a loop 1500 meters. Finally, on the 24th, you know,.

I made loops quite successfully which have been calculated to be 200c meters at least." Delagrange expects now to train some pupils.

Farman was out on the 27th but met with an accident. After having accomplished several flights and was practicing curves, he turned too sharply and the wind striking him inclined the aeroplane so that the left wing touched the ground and was broken. Far-man was thrown forward several yards but was not seriously injured. Bleriot was timing him to see if he could break his 3 minute-31 second record. After the first flight he stopped, saying that the wind was too great, but soon he started again, when the accident occurred. The machine was flying very low at the time. Farman's machine has since been fitted with a radiator and he hopes to stay in the air for 20 minutes.

The bad weather was employed by Delagrange in perfecting his apparatus. The Antoinette 40 was provided with a supplementary water tank holding 5 liters, making the total quantity of water carried 20 liters. With this quantity the motor can run for 18 minutes without heating at all. To win the Armengaud prize of $2,000 he must stay in the air 15 minutes.

On April 10th Delagrange was able to make 2500 meters and would have beaten the official record of Farman of 2004 meters on the 21st had he not touched the ground while flying for about 3 seconds.

Delagrange Beats the Record for Distance and Duration of Henry Farman and Wins the Archdeacon Cup—Stays in the Air 9 Minutes 15 Seconds and Flies 6 Miles.

April 11. After summoning the Aero Club of France Committee, Delagrange started, at about five o'clock in the afternoon, on his flight around a triangular course measuring 825 meters around. Poles were placed distanced apart 350, 200 and 275 meters respectively. The strong, gusty and irregular wind of the morning had somewhat diminished. For the first two circuits the machine flew close to the ground and


unfortunately touched the ground twice. Delagrange succeeded in correcting this mistake and made almost five times the circuit of the triangle at about 3 meters altitude. After the second contact with the ground the referees took the time again and he then flew without contact for 3925 meters in 6 minutes 30 seconds. Counting the first two turns the performance lasted 9 minutes 15 seconds, over a distance of 5575 meters (3.46 miles), measured from pole to pole, without any stop of the machine or motor. The flight was ended from sheer physical exhaustion from constant manipulation of the plane and rudder.

Taking into account the circumference of the circles in which Delagrange flew and not merely adding the length of the arcs—from pole to pole—the distance is estimated to be 10 kilometers, approximately 6 miles. It is obviously impossible to obtain the actual distance travelled, but it is likewise obvious that the speed per hour, based on

the time given and a distance of only 5575 meters, would be misleading to a great degree.

Looking backward: on September 3, 1906, the first mechanical flight in Europe— if we count out Ader—was made by Santos-Dumont at Bagatelle. He covered 25 meters on October 23 and 220 meters on November 12. On October 26, 1907, Farman officially flew 770 meters in 52 3/5 seconds; he won on January 13, 1908, the Grand Prize Deutsch-Archdeacon $10,000 by 1,000 meters in 1 minute 23 seconds, and on-March 21 doubled his record, 2004.8 meters in 3 minutes 31 seconds.


If all people are not sufficiently wealthy or courageous to try a trip in a flying machine with a motor, gliding is a sport which is becoming popular in a short time because it is very pleasurable and hot costly.

With $10 or $15 you can build yourself a glider and try the very enjoyable sensation of being in the air. It is a sport that does not require very much physical strength, is very healthful and, at the same time, demands the faculty of being cool. Gliding is the first step to the flying machine with motor; it is the first step to learn to be a bird; it is the first step to learn equilibrium when you arc in the air. I do not know of any reason why gliding should not be as popular as all the other sports.

On Saturday and Sunday, May 2d and 3d, Messrs. A. B. Levy, L. J. Fishel, L. R. Adams, W. R. Kimball, Daniel L. Braine and V. W. Vorsc, all members of the Aero Club of America, the latter two gentlemen being also students of the International School of Aeronautics, made some very successful glides at Locust Valley, Long Island. Owing to the weather conditions the experiments were discontinued on the 2d after only a few glides had been made, but on Sunday, the 3d, much work was accomplished and about 125 glides were made during the day. The length of the glides varied from 40 to 45 feet and in some cases the machines were raised 18 to 20 feet above the ground. The wind was blowing 18 miles per hour. After a few experiments, an improvement to the apparatus was made by fixing a front rudder, but this was abandoned later for a rear tail, which gave better results.

I am so well pleased with the work done by Mr. Braine, building his seventh gliding apparatus, that I have offered gold and silver medals for the longest flights with gliders. The conditions will be made public in the course of a few days, and there is every indication that the contest will be a very interesting and instructive one.

Messrs. Archdeacon, Farman and Santos Dumont have bet $1200 against M. Charron's $2400 that an aeroplane will carry two passengers over a kilometer course within one year.

The Hon. C. S. Rolls has just made the first trip in his new Lilliputian balloon Imp" of 11,000 cubic feet. It is the smallest balloon in England.

The new company now being formed in Paris for the construction of airships is a sign of the times, and shows that in many quarters the dirigible balloon is considered to have reached the stage of a practicable science. The new company, to be known as the "Société Française des Ballons Dirigeables," is being founded by the well-known aeronautical engineer, M. Mallet, whilst Comte Henri de la Vaulx will have charge of the technical department, and be aided by André Schelcher, of the firm of Panhard-Levassor. The company will produce the ordinary type of airship which up to the present has given the best results.—The Car.

No fewer than thirteen aeroplanes either exist or are under construction in the vicinity of Paris. Nine have already been experimented with, and four have yet to be tried. The nine belong to Santos-Dumont, H. Farman, Esnault-Pelterie, L. Bleriot, H. De la Vaulx, Vuia, Delagrange, De Pischoff and Gastambide-Mengin. The untested machines belong to E. and P. Zeus, Ferber-Levavasseur, Kapferer-Paulhan and Reissner.

The French aviator and mo^or manufacturer, Pelterie, has placed on the market a 60 h.p. 14-cylinder engine weighing 98 kilos, or 3.6 pounds to the h.p. Other sizes made by the same firm are the 20 h.p. with five cylinders, weighing 37J^ kilos; 30 h.p. with seven cylinders, weighing 52 kilos.; and 40 h.p. with ten cylinders, weighing 72 kilos.

THE HELICOPTERE. C. H. Chalmers, E. E.

In a great many respects the hélicoptère is one of the most interesting types of dynamic flyers. To be able to fly" has ever been the dream of mankind, and to some extent the longed for condition has been realized. But if we are to do the thing right, we should have a machine that can remain stationary in the air over a given point, rise or descend vertically and move forward at any speed from the slowest up to the maximum for which it was designed. It is further desirable that a given flyer, which is designed for a certain carrying capacity at its maximum speed, shall have an increased carrying capacity at reduced speeds.

In nature, birds, bats and insects, and to some extent animals and fish, are endowed with powers which enable them to leave the surface of the ground or water and remain in the air for greater or less periods of time. Nature has also provided most living animal organisms with means for locomotion over the surface of the earth, and this, too, in widely varying degrees.

As the human species has from time to time improved its condition by adding artificial powers to those bestowed by nature, the tendency has often been to imitate nature in her gifts to the lower animals. In the field of artificial locomotion this has been true, but it is particularly noticeable that the largest success has accompanied quite radical departure from nature's methods. The row-boat is propelled like the fish with its propelling fins, while the screw propeller of our ocean liner is much more of a departure from nature's method and correspondingly more successful as an artificial means of locomotion for mankind.

Some of the earliest locomotives had legs or kickers to push them forward, but our swift transcontinental trains and our automobiles are better in all respects, even though they fail to imitate at all the jack-rabbit, the ostrich- or the race horse, though the latter are among the best productions of nature.

Lillienthal, Pilcher and some of the other early gliders made wings like birds. Later, Chanute, the Brothers Wright, and others, made double decked wings and gliders; and later still the Wrights and Farman added screw propellers to their double decked wings. Like huge eagles these machines have to gain a headway on the ground before they can rise and fly.

It seems to the writer that most machines of this character are properly to be called "Artificial Birds" rather than "Flying Machines."

The hélicoptère, with its vertical shafts and revolving blades, seems to be the type to which inventors of engineering experience must ultimately be driven, because it is in its very nature a "Machine Type" of flyer and in line with man's solution of the problem of locomotion over land with his revolving locomotive driver, and over sea with his revolving screw propeller and in that such a mechanism by its nature embodies so many highly desirable characteristics.

The great difficulty with the hélicoptère has been its excessive power requirements. While the Wright Brothers flew 40 miles per hour with a total weight of nearly 1000 lbs., they are said to have used only a 16 h.p. engine. On the other hand, Bertin used a 150 h.p. engine, lifted somewhat less and .didn't fly at all. The giroplane, which is really a modified hélicoptère, did better and lifted 1200 lbs., or more, with a 45 h.p. engine.

The excessive power requirements of hélicoptères are, I believe, entirely unnecessary and when once this obstacle is overcome, the hélicoptère will quickly supersede the "Artificial Bird" type now occupying the center of the aeronautical stage.

The great fault from a power-consuming standpoint with all hélicoptères is that they are air movers, rather than lifters. The revolving blades strike the air, get some reaction, but start the air particles downward at a high rate, and when the second blade comes around the life is knocked all out of the air and the result is small lift and enormous fan effect with great waste of power. What is wanted is great diameter of blade and high peripheral speed and low angular velocity. These proportions must be carried to such an extent that the outer ends and effective part of the blades move at high velocity and in fresh, undisturbed air.

By the high velocity we shall get the advantage of the Langley law. viz., that the higher the speed, the less the power to support a given weight. By the large diameter, we shall have our blades moving in undisturbed air and so get the maximum reaction from each particle struck by the revolving blade.

The trouble is that as the diameter and peripheral speed increase, the strains of every character increase and this forces the weight up and up until the gain in the one direction is offset by the loss in the other.

Realizing the difficulties just set forth, I have set myself to the task of designing a pair of revolving blades 30' o" in diameter to revolve at 300 rev. per min. and be strong enough to stand the strain due to the enormous centrifugal force and also an upward

reaction or lift of 500 lbs. I have the blades finished. The pair weigh 54 lbs., including the hub for fastening them to the vertical shaft. As soon as the weather gets warm enough to be outside with comfort, I have arranged to attach the blades to a vertical shaft where I can conveniently measure the lift and speed. I shall drive the vertical shaft with an electric motor of predetermined efficiency and in this way get the data for plotting curves of lift and speed, of lift and horsepower as well as speed and horsepower. I shall be glad to give out the results of these experiments to the aeronautical journals as soon as I get them, for I believe the subject of aerial navigation is too big for one man or a few men to adequately solve by themselves and so success will come only by each one adding his mite to the present store of knowledge on the subject. I might say that I shall be pleased to get in touch with helicoptere enthusiasts by mail, as I feel we can, by working together, soon get better results than our aeroplane friends.


May.—Contest for balloons at Bordeaux of the Aero Club Sud-Ouest on the 10th. Distance balloon contest of Aero Club of France on the 16th. International Aeronautical Congress of the F. A. I. at London on the 27th, 28th, and 29th. International balloon "point to point" balloon race of the Aero Club of United Kingdom at Hurling-ham Park on the 30th. Distance balloon race at Barcelona, Spain, on the 17th; $2,900 in prizes and gas free. Grand Prix balloon race of the Aero Club of France on the 24th. Aéronef contests at Munich. Contest for gliders, Aero Club Sud-Ouest on the 24th.

June.—Aero Club of France balloon race on the nth. Balloon race at Tours on the 21st. Competition of aeroplane models at the Galerie des Machines, Paris, auspices of the Aéronautique Club of France, on the 21st. Distance balloon contest of Aero Club of France on the 28th. Aeroplane contests at Kiel for $1,000 on the 28th.

July.—Balloon race at Brussels on the 19th. Flying machine contests at Spa on the 12th, 19th and 26th.

September.—Grand Prix of the Aero Club of France. Aeroplane contests at Vichy.

October.—Grand Prix, Aero Club of France, on the 4th. Distance contests and contests for objective point at Berlin on the 10th. Gordon Bennett International Balloon Race on the nth. International aeroplane contests at Venice for $5,000 in prizes.

1911.—Internationa] Assembly of dirigibles in Italy under the auspices of the Societa Aeronautica Italiana.


The 1908 congress will be held in London at the Royal United Service Institution, Whitehall, London, S. W., beginning on the 27th of May. On the afternoon of the 28th the delegates will visit the military aeronautic park at South Farnborough. On the evening of the 29th the Aero Club of the United Kingdom offers a banquet at the Hotel Ritz. An international "point to point" balloon race will be held on the 30th from the grounds of the Hurlingham Club. The winner will be the competitor who lands nearest to a point to be designated immediately before the start. The race is limited to thirty-five balloons. A breakfast will be given at the Hurlingham Club on the 31st.

It is of interest to note the following request made by the English club in connection with this race: "In view of certain representations which have been made to the Committee of the Club respecting trailing, they deem it advisable to draw the attention of competitors to the fact that trailing, unless very carefully conducted, is likely to do considerable damage to property, and thereby bring ballooning into discredit. The Committee, therefore, hope that all competitors will take particular care only to trail in suitable country, and to at once rise when there is any likelihood of a rope doing any damage."


Santos Dumont has another combination balloon-aeroplane, but using the old "No. 16" envelope. The apparatus is 25 kilos heavier than the air, with Santos Dumont aboard. The capacity of the balloon is 99 c. b. m. (some authorities state 115, some 125), with a small balloonet of 4 c. b. m., filled automatically with air by a ventilator connected with the engine. Two small 6-8 horsepower, 2-cylinder Dutheil & Chalmers motors drive two propellers placed in front. He expects to get "60 kilometers an hour" out of this combination. The framework weighs 40 kilos.



The Lightest, the Strongest and Best Built Motor in the World

The Man: "The Vuia, Santos-Dumont, Bleriot, Farman, Delagrange, Gastambide-Mengin and Cormi flying machines were all taken in the air by a 24 and 50 H. P. Antoinette Motor. I don't like to carry this very light fellow rated at 120 H. P. I'm afraid it will take me up in the air, too, and I'm not an aviator. I'm going to quit my job."


A. C. TRIACA, 2 East 29th Street, New York

Telephone, 6749 Mad. Sq.



F. A. Postnikov, Late Lt.-Col. Russian Army.

Can anyone who has ever been Hying in an aerostat above the clouds forget the exhilarating sensation unknown to less fortunate beings, creeping, as it were, along the earth's surface?

Just as it is impossible to explain to a blind man the impressions made by different colors,*so it is equally impossible to explain the motives which urge an aeronaut to yearn for the boundless expanse of the heavens above.

After experiencing this sensation, his enthusiasm is so great that he seems to forget the ties of love and family which bind him to earth. Little does the unthinking average man, amid the duties of our modern hurly-burly life, realize the trouble, expense and tedious preliminary work which goes with this fascinating form of work To share some of my impressions with my new comrades, American amateurs in aeronautics, I will describe one of my free flights from Vladivostok.

On the morning of the 25th of April, 1905, such a thick fog obscured the sea and surrounding country, that it was impossible to distinguish an object thirty feet distant. The direction of the wind was favorable (S.S.E.) and at a variable velocity of 6 to 9 metres per second.

At about it a.m., the fog began to disperse, and 1 gave the order to start, filling the small round balloon "Chajka" (Sea-Gull), which has a volume of 400 metres. The gas was taken from the kite balloon, which had already been working several days. At 12 o'clock the "Chajka" was ready. Twenty minutes later, the Russian Navy flag was run up and we took our places in the basket. After ten minutes more the guide-rope parted from the earth's surface and the balloon began to ascend and took a N.N.W. course.

My companion was a young officer, S. Kovanko, the nephew of the renowned Russian military aeronaut, General Kovanko. It was the young man's first experience in free flight and lie was beside himself with rapture. But this was no time, during the war, to spend much time in enthusiastic contemplations. Each moment presented something new which had to be reported afterwards. Our pencils worked continuously on the maps and note-books. The data thus obtained was important as well as interesting. The most characteristic feature of this trip was the extreme variation of velocity of the wind at different altitudes, while the direction remained about constant, as shown in the accompanying tables:

Height above sea level Average velocity in meters

in meters. per second.

320 4.0

4000 5.0

420 8.0

3S0 8.0

315 10.0

600 13.3

480 6.9

Height above sea level Average velocity in meters

in meters. per second.

800 9.4

900 15.0

1500 10.0

landed tt.o

This shows that the maximum velocity was not at the highest point, but at qoo meters. 3,940 feet above sea level, where it was 15 meters per second.

During the trip, it was possible to see and make sketches of fortifications, camps, barracks, moving detachments and engineering works along the whole line from Port Vladivostok to the town, Nikolsk. a distance of about 50 miles. When "Chajka" was near the latter town and we were engaged in sketching, our occupations were interrupted in the most unexpected manner. First we heard the peculiar whistle, so familiar to us, of several bullets, but we paid no attention to them, believing that the firing was a mistake of some foolish soldiers, and that it would soon stop, but suddenly a distant command reached our ears, and almost simultaneously we heard a sound like the buzzing of several hundred bees, above, below, on every side of us. It was obvious that the Russian infantry did not recognize the navy flag waving above our heads and were trying to Runcture our balloon with their shots. We. tried to silence them by showing a white flag, as a sign of our peaceful intention, but that made the situation worse, for they guessed that we were within range and uninterrupted "rapid firing" was ordered.

Although we had cast out our last remaining cask of ballast of sand, for 8 minutes we were in the midst of a continual buzzing, such as only a bear coming to eat honey from a big bee-hive might hear, until the balloon ascended to a height of more than 1200 meters above the ground, where none of the metallic bees could reach us at all. Soon afterwards, owing to the lack of ballast, we were obliged to end our flight. But to descend was not so easy, as it seemed at first. A fresh breeze had sprung up near the earth, so that at our descent the velocity of the wind was 11 meters, as it was shown by the measurements taken immediately after alighting. In spite of all precautions, we were pulled along the hills among the bushes with terrible speed, lost our hats and overcoats and broke several meteorological instruments. We were finally obliged to use our "cutting devices," which we use only in emergencies.

However, we had accomplished our task satisfactorily and except for some light cuts on our hands and faces came out of the adventure safe and sound.


Since the formation of the Junior Club, as announced in the February number of Aeronautics, Miss E. L. Todd, the organizer, has worked indefatigably to bring about results.

The club now has a real organization, with the following officers: President, Harold L. Piatt; 1st Vice-President, Donald M. Roy; 2nd Vice-President, John Miller; 3rd Vice-President, Cornell De Loiselle; Recording Secretary, Arthur Ober; Corresponding Secretary, Clifford Swayne; Treasurer, Percy Pierce.

Many boys have the spirit of invention, but, by reason of their environment and few advantages, lack frequently not only information as to the prior state of the art, but the knowledge of the principles of mechanics. The object of the organization is to try to save the young experimentors discouragement from too many mistakes.

On February 22 the first outdoor meeting was held in the form of a kite Hying contest. About a hundred persons attended. Junior Club members as well as members of the Aero Club of America. Seven styles of kites were represented. Air. Wilbur R. Kimball demonstrated with a Bell tetrahedral kite that by careful disposition of ballast it could be made to go into or against the wind.

On April 4 A. Leo Stevens invited the boys to the roof of his balloon factory where a hydrogen gas generator had been set up and materials provided, also through the kindness of Mr. Stevens. A hundred small rubber balloons were sent up. usually in groups of three or four, tied together, with a parachute and "return" card. Some of the balloons traveled 5 and 6 miles. The day was very cold and the gas not very good. It is suggested that the Weather Bureau might make use of the enthusiasm of the boys and furnish registering instruments to such boys as would furnish a suitable balloon.

The boys attended the lecture and demonstration at the 71st Regiment Armory on April 30.

With the assistance of Miss Todd, Captain T. S. Baldwin, A. Leo Stevens, Wilbur R. Kimball and Lee S. Burridge, the boys have been taught how to cut and make hot air balloons; cut and make gas balloons of paper and fabric; make nets; make hydrogen gas and fill balloons with hydrogen; make paper parachutes; cut and make small dirigible envelopes; make rubber motors, gliders, etc.

A. C. Triaca, Director of the International School of Aeronautics has invited the boys to visit his school and have explained to them the photographs, instruments, models, etc., and to enter into a demonstration and contest of small models of flying machines, with or without motor, for a prize.

It is planned to have in the very near future a contest of a dozen or more gliding machines, built and manned by the Juniors.

A. Holland Forbes and William F. Whitehouse, who have been contemplating a long distance balloon trip starting from San Antonio, Texas, have given up that place as a starting point on account of unsatisfactory gas, and will make the try from some other western city.

The bet between M. Charron and Santos Dumont, in which the latter gave M. Charron a check for $1000, has been devoted to the lauding of aviation. The $500 won by Santos Dumont from M. Charron, and the $500' by Archdeacon from the Marquis de Dion, have been added to the 1000 for a monster aviation banquet.



President: Professor Willis L. Moore. Secretary: Dr. Albert Francis Zaioi. Chairman Gen'l Committee: Wm. J. Hammer. Chairman Executive Com.: Augustus Post. Sec'y Committees: Ernest La Rue Jones.

Publication Notice.

The addresses, papers and discussions presented to the Congress will be published serially in this magazine, and at the earliest date possible, bound volumes will be distributed without charge to those holding membership cards in the Congress. Others may purchase the volume at a consistent price when ready or may take advantage of immediate publication by subscribing to this magazine at the regular rate.

In accordance with the program as published in the November number, the informal addresses of the Gordon Bennett contestants and others were concluded before entering upon the printing of the formal papers and discussions.

The tenth, eleventh and twelfth papers are presented in this issue, viz: "On the First Observations with Sounding Balloons in America Obtained by the Blue Hill Observatory," by Professor A. Lawrence Rotch, Director;

"The use of Upper Air Data in Weather Forecasting," bv Professor A. T. Henry, U. S. Weather Bureau ; "The Possibility of Extending our Knowledge of the Sun and of Atmospheric Absorption," by Professor W. J. Humphreys, Director of Mount AYeather Observatory.



Professor A. Lawrence Rotch,

Director of Blue Hill Observatory.

In view of the late hour, ] shall only give the history of the work, and a few results. The first observations with the sounding balloons, or registering balloons, were made in France in 1892, balloons holding several thousands of cubic feet of hydrogen gas, carried registered instruments, from which a record of the height could be got, and the corresponding temperature at that height. These balloons lost gas gradually, after reaching the highest point, and floated away to a great distance, some of them travelling as much as seven hundred miles over Europe. Most of them however were found and returned to the senders.

A few years ago an improvement was made in this method by Dr. Assmann of Berlin, who substituted closed rubber balloons filled with 100 cubic feet of hydrogen, which rose to the greatest height until they burst by the expansion of the gas and thereupon a parachute brought the instrument down to the ground safely within a relatively short distance of the starting point. There was not only an advantage by reason of the easy way in which the balloon could be filled and handled, but there was the advantage that it travelled a comparatively short distance, and was soon brought back to the starting point. But the great advantage meteorologically, was that it mounted upward with an almost constant velocity of ascent, and instead of falling gradually to the ground as the other balloons did, it fell rapidly, and at an almost uniform rate. In this way sufficient ventilation of the thermometer was obtained, thereby insuring not only an accurate record of temperature during the ascent, but also during the descent.

The first use of these balloons in America was made by me in 1904, during- the St. Louis Exposition, with the co-operation of the Departments of Liberal Arts and Transportation. These experiments have been continued at St. Louis since, and up to the present time nearly 80 balloons have been sent up. St. Louis was selected for the same reason that it was chosen as the starting- point of the international races, because it was in the center of the Continent, and the balloons would all fall on land. These balloons are in the air usually between two and three hours. They rise for about an hour, then burst and fall to the ground in another hour. Nearly all these balloons were recovered and returned to Blue Hill by express.

The President: What altitude is gained in this two hour flight?

Prof. Roteh: The balloon rises in the first hour to a height of eight to ten miles.

It is a surprise that so great a number of these balloons are recovered. Out of 56 balloons dispatched up to the present year, 53 were recovered and sent back to us, most of them with good records. I have grouped the results of the travel of these balloons in this table, according to altitude, this table having been prepared for the use of the manned balloons competing in the Gordon Bennett race.


Mean Altitude




at which



Velocity, Miles



travelled from




St. Louis

St. Louis

per Hour


26.ooo ft.

117 miles

S.810 E.


. 16

20,000 "

155 "

S. 850 E. S. 870 E. S.79° E.



12,000 "

101 "



6,000 "

42 "


From this data I predicted that the racing balloons, which I assumed would have a mean height of 6,000 feet, should travel with a velocity of 25 miles an hour, and go towards a point slightly south of east. This was nearly verified. The balloons moved at almost exactly the speed of 25 miles an hour, but went a little north of east instead of south of east.

So much for the directions and velocities—for the chief object of these experiments was not to determine the course of the balloons, because the velocity of the air currents at different heights was already pretty well known from the directions of the clouds observed at Blue Hill Observatory and at the Weather Bureau stations. The main interest is in the temperature at various heights. While the temperature increases pretty uniformly at the rate of about one degree in every 300 feet, up to a height of some 8 miles, varying according to the season, above that altitude there is no longer an increase of the temperature but often a decrease ; in other words, it usually becomes warmer. In the Summer and Autumn this warm stratum comes lower down, but in Winter it is higher up.

The President: How was this determined?

Prof. Rotch: It was determined from records of some 50 balloon ascensions grouped according to seasons. We have observations made in every season and while the data were somewhat unequally distributed, I think subsequent observations will not modify them very much. This warmer stratum has been located in Central Europe at a lesser height, namely, about seven miles. Now it has been observed at St. Louis, which is further south, at a higher level. It is reasonable, therefore, to assume that this warm current is a general condition at some height above the earth. At ten miles above the equator we saw no sign of it, but in the polar regions it has been found considerably lower, so far as observations have been made.

The President: How did yon get the observations at the equator?

Prof. Rotch: By two balloons coupled together which were sent up from the yacht of M. Teisserenc de Bort. One balloon burst and, with the inflated balloon, sank to the ocean where it served as a guide to the ship, which steamed after the balloon and recovered the instrument.

The President: I understand that observations recently made in the Arctic have brought out the same facts, that a warm stratum lies below 8 miles.

Prof. Rotch: Yes, and it probably exists over the equator at a height exceeding ten miles. In a diagram showing a vertical section of the atmosphere over St. Louis, it is seen that at 8 miles high the seasonal effect is no longer dominant, as the temperature is nearly constant throughout the year. Above 8 miles there is this relatively warm current; that is, to say the temperature increases to more than 720 Fahrenheit below Zero. The lowest temperature obtained in any ascension was ni° Fahrenheit below Zero. This, to my knowledge, is one of the lowest temperatures ever recorded, either on the earth or above it.

The President: What date was that?

Prof. Rotch: During a high barometric pressure at the ground, on January 25, 1905, at a height of 48,680 feet. In the following July we obtained a minimum temperature of minus 750 Fahrenheit, at a height of 45,110 feet.

I do not think I shall do any more in this matter. Having shown that these balloon ascensions are practical, I believe the Weather Bureau will take them up. In fact, since Dr. Blair has been detailed to watch Mr. Fergusson's experiments at St. Louis, it is expected the Weather Bureau will undertake this work on a large scale. Almost all of our balloons have been recovered, which shows that the people are ready to co-operate in sending them back. A very small reward, only $2.00, is offered for the return of these balloons, but it saves a great deal of trouble. All the ascensions have been made from St. Louis.

The President: Everything in regard to the exploration of the upper air on the part of meteorologists, has a direct bearing on the problems that are considered by those engaged in aeronautics ; that is why we have a number of papers by the meteorologists of the Government.

I will say a word in relation to Prof. Rotch's work at St. Louis. It is the intention of the Weather Bureau to make a number of ascensions simultaneously from a large number of places in the West within the next year, the object being not to get extremely great altitudes from one particular city, a large number of times, valuable though such data are or may be valuable as the work Mr. Rotch has been doing, but to send several balloons up, liberating,them simultaneously in the four quadrants of the storm, the four quadrants of a cold wave—exploring a given storm, exploring a given cold wave. That is one of the lines of research that has been planned to be conducted from the headquarters at Mt. Weather.

See the July, 1907, number of "Aeronautics."



At the Milan meeting of the International Commission for Scientific Aeronautics it was decided to concentrate the work of exploring the air upon four grand series of ascensions, in addition to the usual monthly ascensions. The former last several days and observations are to be obtained not only by balloons and kites but also by special observations of cloud drift and upon mountain summits. The first of these quarterly ascensions was appointed for the week commencing July 22, 1907, and, as has been the case for several years, co-operative kite-flights and cloud observations were made at

Blue Hill Observatory. It is supposed that the United States Weather Bureau station at Mount Weather, Virginia, which has recently taken up the work of exploring the free atmosphere, also participated in this series of ascensions.

Unfortunately light winds prevailed at Blue Hill during almost the entire week, so that but four kite-rlights were possible and only on the 27th was the height of a mile and a half attained. During an evening flight the top kite and the meteorograph broke away and the latter has never been recovered. Had a small steamer been equipped for kite flying in Massachusetts Bay, as was done for the first time by Professor Rotch in 1901, the kites would have been rendered independent of the wind by the motion of the vessel, either in the direction of the wind or against it, for, in order to lift the kites, a velocity of at least 14 miles per hour is required, which is more than the average velocity of the wind in Summer on Blue Hill. Kite flying was continued during the following week in more favorable conditions and of the three Mights, the highest, on August 2, reached an altitude of nearly 2 miles.

Although no efforts were made in America to secure observations over the ocean, as was done abroad, Professor Rotch, the Director of the Blue Hill Observatory and a member of the International Commission, extended his field of work by sending Mr. Clayton to the White Mountains (Alt. Washington, Bretton Woods) to obtain observations in the free air at the height of Mt. Washington and on that mountain itself. Such an investigation had already been conducted privately by Mr. Fergusson, of the Blue Hill Observatory, who had installed self-recording instruments on the summit of Mt. Washington and at Twin Mountain station for the purpose of comparing the conditions on the mountains with those shown by instruments lifted by kites to the same height. Between July 21st and 28th Mr. Clayton obtained three such series of observations with kites at a height exceeding that of Mt. Washington (6,300 feet) and on the days when the wind was too high to lift the kites, he carried the instruments up the mountain. The records seem to indicate a greater wind velocity on top of the mountain and probably a lower temperature than in the free air.

Professor Roteh resumed the work of exploring the air at great heights by sending up more sounding balloons from St. Louis in October. The successful experiments already conducted there being described in the first issue of "Aeronautics."

The situation of Blue Hill on the Atlantic Coast precludes the use of balloons, but St. Louis has proved an excellent place for this work.

The first sounding balloons to be used in New England were sent up from Pitts-field on May 7, 1908, the international day for balloon and kite ascensions.


A considerable mass of upper air data has been accumulated within the last ten years, particularly in Germany, France, and at the Blue Hill Observatory in this country. These data have been used largely with a view of testing the various theories of cyclones and anti-cyclones which are found in the literature of meteorology and in determining the distribution of temperature and moisture at various altitudes.

The application of upper air data to problems of weather forecasting is yet apparently, in its infancy. The writer, as one of the forecasters of the United States Weather Bureau, in Washington, D. C., has had the opportunity of comparing upper air conditions, as obtained by kite flights at Mt. Weather, Va., with the general meteorological conditions over the eastern part of the United States, as shown by the 8 p. m. daily weather map. and of drawing conclusions which may be useful in the art of weather forecasting.

The problem which confronts the forecaster is essentially one of determining in advance, the path and rate of movement of anti-cyclones, commonly referred to as areas of high pressure, or simply highs, and cyclones, commonly known as areas of low pressure, or lows. It will be readily understood that any inaccuracy in predicting either the course pursued by these great atmospheric whirls, or the rate of their movements will result disastrously to the forecasts. The forecaster has at his command surface conditions only; it is but natural, therefore, that one of the most promising lines of work looking to improvement in the forecasts lies in the study of the air

conditions in the zone or level in which cyclonic and anti-cyclonic action is constantly occurring.

The first step in the work naturally is an endeavor to correlate the observed data of the free air with the known facts concerning- the development and movements of highs and lows. If thereby a clearer insight into the mechanism of cither the high or the low can be gained, by just so much will the art of forcasting be improved. Thus, for example, if the depth, or vertical thickness of a low were known one would be able by means of surface observations which now give its horizontal dimensions, to exactly delimit its position in the atmosphere. This additional knowledge would greath* add to the ability of the forecaster to correctly outline the future course and intensity of the storm. It is now known that deep barometric depressions have quite .different characteristics from shallow depressions.

Kite observations, when made consecutively, afford the forecaster an opportunity to compare the daily temperature changes aloft with those on the surface. The relation between such changes and their bearing upon the coming weather is an important consideration. Another factor of greater or less significance is the possibility of determining from the temperature and moisture conditions aloft whether clouds will form, what changes existing clouds will undergo, whether they will increase in density and assume the blanket form or break up and disappear. These in general are some of the possibilities of the use of upper air data in weather forecasting.

The material afforded by the kite observations during the past Summer, was confined to air pressure, temperature and wind direction. Let us now consider, briefly, its application to the problem in hand. In the beginning, it was used largely to strengthen and confirm the conclusion which was obvious from the surface conditions; to dispel uncertainty when possible and, in general, to illuminate the situation as it appeared from the surface conditions only.

Perhaps the element which was most useful in the beginning was the direction of the wind in the upper layers. The observations on this point disclosed one or two facts of particular interest and importance to members of this congress, viz.: the marked tendency of east and south winds to shift to the right with increasing altitude. This fact was brought out in the Blue Hill kite observations and is fully confirmed by those made during the past summer at Alt. Weather. The altitude at which the shift occurs varies, but is generally below 3,280 feet, (1,000 meters). The deviation in the case of westerly winds however is about as apt to be to the left as to the right and this is particularly so in certain types of pressure distribution.

While the direction of the wind is an important consideration to the forecaster the depth of the several layers having different directions is still more so, since, by knowing roughly the latter, he can form an approximation of the height to which the atmosphere is disturbed by the circulation of the high or the low, as the case may be, and consequently the intensity of the storm and the probable extent of territory affected by it. In one case during last summer the early dissolution of a low was foreshadowed by the fact that the wind circulation proper to it extended upward less than 2,500 feet, (762 meters) above the station.

The depth of currents which clearly belong to the circulation of highs and lows seems to vary between rather wide limits. In the case of easterly winds, which in most cases are caused by the approach of a low from the west, the altitudes attained by such currents were found to be generally less than 2,000 feet, (610 meters) ;Hhus in 12 cases of east to south winds the average depth of the surface winds was 1,682 feet above the station, _ the maximum depth was 2,631 feet, the minimum 349 feet. In the case of winds

between north and east, the average of 6 cases was 3,033 feet, (924 m.) the maximum was 6,735 *eet; (L943 m0 and the minimum was 1,181 ft. (360 m.) The maximum depth, 6.735 ft- was caused, however, by an anti-cyclone whose center was directly north of the station. In a few other cases it was noticed that relatively high easterly winds (By the term "easterly winds" is meant winds from any point between north and cast) prevailed when the centre of the anti-cyclone was near to and north by east of the station.

An exceedingly interesting kite flight which sustains the view that occasionally easterly winds prevail to great altitudes, was made at the Blue Hill Observatory on June 19th 1900, (Annals of the Astronomical Observatory of Harvard College, Vol. XLI1I—Bart JII, page 193). In this flight east-northeast winds prevailed from the earth's surface to an altitude of 13,815 feet, (4,211 m.J. The winds at that elevation clearly formed a part of the circulation between a strong high that was central in the Lake region, and a low off the south Atlantic coast. These examples represent an extreme rather than a mean condition, nevertheless, they form an important exception to the general statement that easterly winds are shallow.

The wind at Alt. Weather shifts to a westerly quarter on the passage of a low over the station. The altitude of the westerly currents is very much greater than that of the easterly and the velocity is greater. Twelve ascents were made during the summer in which altitudes of two miles and over, (3 km.) were reached.

In three of these ascents the wind had a southerly component at the highest elevation reached ; in each of the three ascents a marked barometric depression covered the northeastern States with lowest pressure over the mouth of the St. Lawrence River. In two other cases very high altitudes were reached with a different distribution of pressure, viz: a great trough of low barometer in the Mississippi Valley with strong areas of high pressure on both sides. In both of these cases there was a southerly component in the wind direction aloft. In the remaining cases the winds were west-northwest or west, or in the direction of the prevailing winds in the cirrus cloud level. While it seems probable that the winds up to at least two miles above the earth's surface respond to the barometric gradients observed below, it is by no means certain that such is the case. This subject needs further elucidation.

A knowledge of the vertical temperature distribution in highs and lows, obtained through kite flights, has afforded valuable information at times. The following general conclusions are drawn from the data thus far collected: 1. The air column in the low is warmer than in the high for such altitudes as were reached by the kites. 2. The region of greatest cold is found in the southeastern quadrant of the high. 3. As the center of the high crosses the meridian of the station and passes to the eastward the temperature conditions aloft become more or less unstable, inversions take place and the rate of decrease of temperature with increase of altitude diminishes.

Occasionally in the kite flight layers of air are met having temperatures higher than those found in layers of less altitude; in other words the vertical gradient is interrupted and instead of a fall in temperature with increase in altitude, a rise is found. Such breaks in the continuity of the vertical temperature gradient are known as inversions.

Temperature inversions may be classed as follows: First, those which occur in the rear of a low or on the immediate eastern front of a high. Inversions in this region are thought to be due to the" circumstance that the warm surface layers of the low feeling the cooling effect of the high a little sooner than the layers at some distance aloft. This assumption follows the suggestion of Air. H. Helm Clavton, of the Blue Hill Observatorv, viz.; that

the cold air of the northern portion of the high moves more rapidly east-southeast, than does the high itself, and that on account of its greater specific weight as compared with that of the air into which it is moving, it sinks toward the earth's surface in an inclined stratum which reaches the earth's surface in the rear of the low. This type of inversion has little or no significance to the forecaster, since, ordinarily, the cooling in the rear of the low proceeds until the upper layers, within the limits of observation, at least, acquire a temperature nearly such as is required by the adiabatic rate of cooling for dry air.

A second type of inversion is met when the kites pass from one current of air into another having a different temperature. The existence of a current of warm flowing along and above a colder one is revealed in this way. Inversions of this nature afford early indications of warmer conditions at the surface.

While the foregoing covers, in brief, the most important considerations suggested by the summer's experience it does not purport to exhaust the subject in its various aspects. With the addition of the humidity element to the kite observations and the accumulation of data for the cold season it is expected that our present knowledge of the relations which subsist between air conditions aloft and at the surface, respectively, will be greatly increased. With such increase better forecasts will naturallv follow.

4 ml

Washington. D. C, October 23, 1907.



Prof. W. J. Humphreys, Director Mt. Weather Observatory.

It is desirable and possible by the use of sounding balloons to extend our knowledge of the absorption of the atmosphere and of the structure of the sun.

Meteorological conditions of the earth are determined in great measure by the amount and kind of energy reaching us from the sun. When the white solar light is split up into its components, it is found to consist of light that affects the eye, the red. green, blue and other colors, and a kind of light which affects the photographic plate, not visible, known as the ultra-violet, and, also, but at the other end of the spectrum, an extensive region known as ultra-red, likewise invisible. The ultra-violet light, as we know from experiments in the laboratory, has an important ionising property. The ultraviolet light, however, from the sun, that reaches the earth, does not extend very far below the visible, not nearly so far as we find it in the case of the electric arc. Presumably this is due to the absorption of the violet light in the earth's atmosphere.

The kind of light that we get from any source depends upon two things, namely; first, the light produced by the source itself; and, second, the absorption of the media through which it passes. In the case of the solar light there are two absorbing media, the sun's atmosphere and the earth's atmosphere. If the ultra-violet light is absorbed by the sun's atmosphere, then clearly it cannot be absorbed by the earth's atmosphere. It is not there to be absorbed. And, therefore, no ionising from that source could be expected. But if it is not absorbed by the sun's atmosphere, then clearly it is absorbed by the earth's atmosphere, because it does not reach the earth's surface, and ionising must take place from that source. If the air is filled with electroms we must have a different result in storms from the results we would have

when the air is not so filled. But does the air get this ultra-violet light? We would say, probably so; for presumably the sun must be sending it out, but we do not know certainly, since, as just explained, the light we get depends upon the source and upon the media through which it passes. If the sun's atmosphere absorbs it, none reaches the earth. If the sun does not, then it reaches the earth's atmosphere, but it does not get down to the earth, to the land; it stops off very far short of the limit to which a photographic plate would show it. Does that ultra-violet light leave the sun at all? Is there ultra-volet light laying about in the upper regions of the atmosphere? If so, it must do work.

We want to know the facts, and one of the ways to find out is to send up a properly constructed spectroscope attached to a sounding balloon. We may fail fifty times, but if we succeed once, that is all that is necessary. Send up the proper instrument, one that will spread out the spectrum and photograph it. Suppose we find no increase in the ultra-violet light high up in the earth's atmosphere, then we will know that the electrification of the atmosphere is not due to the far ultra-violet radiation. I fancy however the chances are that the higher up we go the less the absorption and that we will find the ultra-violet light growing, but I do not know. Establish the facts. If we find the light is not there, we will be extending our knowledge of the sun's atmosphere. That is a little line of work that is quite possible simply by attaching existing apparatus to sounding balloons. Let us try over and over until we have success, for we have everything in hand now to try the experiment. What we wish to know is what are the facts in the case. Let us attach the proper instrument to sounding balloons, that is, a properly constructed spectroscope, which with few or with many trials will some time or other give us the desired information. If this is done it certainly will extend our knowledge both of the sun's and of the earth's atmosphere and place our hypotheses on a sound basis. We will not be guessing; we will be knowing. This will allow us then-to base our theories in regard to the ionising of the atmosphere upon certain definitely established facts so that we will have a sure basis to go upon.

A Panhard motor, 8 cylinder, air cooled, 50 h.p., weight 150 pounds, is beingN built for tlie English Government dirigible.

J. F. Scott has cancelled his contract to supply the Government with an hour-flight aeroplane for $1,000. <-.' <-

In the balloon race of April 5 of the Aeronaulique Club de France 6 balloons started.

M. Brazier, the manufacturer of the Brazier.car, is now studying up on aviation motors. -' v t

A. B. Lambert, of the Aero Club of St. Louis, has made half a dozen balloon trips during the month from Paris, in company with Messrs. Frank S. Lahm, E. W. Mix. Alfred Leblanc and M. Barbottc.

The helicopter system seems to be attracting inventors. The crack cyclist Jacquelin is reported to have started work and will use a 6-cylinder motor, with 2 cylinders on each side set "V," with the other 2 cylinders vertical in the center.

With a view always for the good in the motor line, a certain member of the Aero Club stopped on Broadway the other day to inspect two motorcycles which stood, with their riders, near the curb. One was a Cnrtiss and the other a -.

"How do you like the Cnrtiss motorcycle?" I asked. "I wouldn't ride anything

else—rather have it than two -s." was the reply. "Doesn't it give you any

trouble?" "No, I am absolutely satisfied."




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Washington Times


April 4. F. S. Lahm (Aero Club of America) and A. B. Lambert (Aero Club of St. Louis), in the ''Katherine Hamilton," 800 cbm., from St. Cloud to Tournan (Scine-et-Marne).

April 6. Captain Chas. De F. Chandler (Aero Club of America), Major Edgar Russell and Mr. C. H. Caudy in the "Signal Corps No. 10" from Washington at 1:10 p. m., landing ¿4 mile N.N.E. of North Keys, Md., at 3:50 p. m. Distance, 16.25 miles; elapsed time, 2 hours, 40 minutes; average speed, 6 miles; general direction, S. 470 E.; highest altitude, 1750 m., about top of haze and dust layer.

April 10. A. Holland Forbes (Aero Club of America) and N. H. Arnold (North

Adams Aero Club) in the Stevens balloon "North Adams No. i" from North Adams at 3 a. m., landing at Athol, Mass., 6:50 a. m. The average speed was low, travelling only 5 miles in the last hour of the trip. This trip was the "night trip" needed to comply with the requirements for a pilot's license. Distance travelled, 48 miles; elapsed time, 3 hours. 50 minutes; average speed, 12.5 miles; general direction, east.

Washington Times


April 17. Lieut. Frank P. Lahm (Aero Club of America), Captain R. O. Van Horn, Lieut. T. Self ridge (A. C. A.) and R. A. Collins in the "Signal Corps No. 10," from Washington, D. C, at 2:17 p. m., for the purpose of making an experiment with homing pigeons. The landing was at Roland Park, north of Baltimore, at 6:05. Distance, 37 miles; general direction, N., N.E., N.; elapsed time, 3 hours, 48 minutes; average speed, 9.7 miles; highest altitude, 1500 meters. Seven pigeons were released, one at 5:35 and the other six at 5:45. Two of the pigeons returned to Washington by the following evening. The failure of the others to return is attributed to their being released just before dark.

April 17. A. Holland Forbes, Alan R. Hawley and Wm. F. Whitehotise (Aero Club of America—all) in the "North Adams No. 1" from North Adams at 9:25 a. m., landing at West Deerfield, Mass., 4 miles from Greenfield, at 11:45 ;i- m- They reported "travelled all directions from south to north." Distance, 28 miles; elapsed time, 2 hours, 20 minntes; average speed, 12 miles; general direction, east.

April 22. Captain Clias. Dc F. Chandler (Aero Club of America), Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., and Captain Fitzhugh Lee, in the Stevens built "Signal Corps No. 10," of 2000 cbm., from Washington at 1:45 p. m., landing at 5:20 p. m. 1 y2 miles east of Red Lion, Delaware. Distance, 87.S8 miles; elapsed time, 3 hours, 35 minutes; average


speed, 25.1 miles; general direction, northeast. Chesapeake Bav was crossed in this flight.

April 24. A. Holland Forbes (Aero Club of America), N. H. Arnold and Dr. R. M. Randall (North Adams Aero Club), in the "North Adams No. 1" at 9:20 a. m., landing 1 mile south of South Willianistown, Mass., at 11:50 a. in. Distance, 8 miles; elapsed time, 2 hours, 30 minutes; average speed, 3.2 miles; general direction, southwest.

This is the tenth trip for Mr. Forbes and he obtained his pilot's license on April 27. This is Mr. Arnold's sixth trip. Mr. Stevens' "school" graduates its pupils rapidly.

Washington Times


A new aero club may possibly be formed in Salem, Ohio. A. Leo Stevens will shortly go there with a balloon.

"Arms and the Man," a military weekly paper which is devoting considerable attention to military aeronautics, has moved from New York, and is now located at 1502 H Street, N. W., Washington, D. C.

"Oh, Mr. Simmons," gushed one of the fair guests, "didn't it seem"frightful to you to be away up in the air, going farther and farther from the earth, as if you were an independent body in space?"

"Why, no, Mrs. Jymes," said the aeronaut; "it wasn't so awfully terrifying. In a balloon you don't seem to be going up. The earth appears to be going away from you, don't you know, while you are standing still."

"But to see the horizon receding away from you-"

"Pardon me, Mrs. Jymes, but the horizon doesn't seem to recede. It seems to rise up, like the rim of a great soup bowl, and the earth has a concave appearance."

"Looks like a soup bowl? How odd! Still, doesn't it excite one's deepest emotions, Mr. Simmons?"

"Well, you can't help thinking that if anything should happen to the balloon you'd mighty soon be in the soup."—Chicago Tribune.


Foremost hydrogen balloon and airship manufacturer and operator in America.

CAPTAIN THOMAS S. BALDWIN Box 78 Madison Square P. O. - New York


In Three Parts—Part III.

By Darwin Lyon

As stated in the preceding number of Aeronautics, it is difficult to calculate the rate of evaporation of liquid hydrogen by comparing it with the rate of evaporation of liquid air, because of the many factors that have to be taken into consideration. In the first place, liquid air itself has no difinite rate of evaporation for the reason that it is really a mixture of two liquids having different boiling points—liquid nitrogen and liquid oxygen—the former boiling at minus 194.40 Centigrade, the latter at 182.7° Centigrade. Thus the result is that the composition of "liquid air" starts to change from the moment of its production and continues to do so until it has entirely disappeared—the mixture growing steadily richer in oxygen. We find in practice that after about four-fifths of the liquid air has evaporated, the remainder contains about 50 per cent, or oxygen.

Liquid hydrogen has a boiling point of minus 253° Centigrade, a critical temperature of minus 234° Centigrade, a critical pressure of 20 atmospheres, a specific heat of 6, and a latent heat of evaporation of 190 units. These are the physical constants of hydrogen and are used in all such problems as calculating its relative rate of evaporation.

Roughly speaking we may say that of two liquids having different temperatures and standing in similar receptacles, the rate of evaporation is proportionate to the difference in temperature between the two. Now as a general rule we may say that the rate of evaporation is inversely proportionate to the latent heat, i.e., if the latent heat of one fluid is twice that of another it will take twice as long to evaporate. Latent heat is potential energy in the form of a change in the internal constitution of a substance and does not manifest its presence by rise of temperature. Thus a liquid absorbs heat when it vaporizes though the temperature is not affected. When heat disappears from a substance, molecular kinetic energy is transformed into the potential form; when it reappears, the reverse transformation takes place. This molecular kinetic energy affects temperature and for this reason it is called sensible heat. The molecular potential energy does not effect temperature and is therefore called latent heat. That part of the added heat that is used to increase the rapidity of the molecular motions is known as kinetic and appears as sensible heat. That part that is used to oppose cohesion and to overcome pressure becomes potential, and disappears as latent heat. When liquid hydrogen evaporates, the potential energy needed to establish the aeriform condition is obtained by the transformation of kinetic energy and therefore at its expense;—hence, the disappearance of sensible heat or the fall of temperature. Thus we see that were liquid hydrogen not evaporating, not only would it not "produce" cold, but it itself would not be cold. When steam is condensed, the potential energy that is no longer needed to keep the H2O in the gaseous state is changed into kinetic energy; hence, the increase of sensible heat, i.e., of temperature. The terms latent heat and sensible heat should not be confused with specific heat. The specific heat of a substance is the ratio between the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of any weight of that substance one degree, and the amount of heat requiretf to raise the temperature of the same weight of water one degree. Hydrogen gas has a higher specific heat than any other substance. Water comes next—thus more energy is required to raise the temperature of a pound of water one degree than for a pound of any other substance except hydrogen gas. By comparing the specific heats given below it can be seen how high hydrogen stands on the scale:—Liquid hydrogen, 6; hydrogen gas, 3.409; water, 1; ice, 0.505; steam, 0.48; oxygen, 0.2175; iron, 0.1138; lead, 0.0314.

We above said that of two liquids standing in similar receptacles, the rate of evaporation was proportionate to the difference in temperature—also, that evaporation was inversely proportionate to the latent heat. "Roughly speaking," we said for the reason that in practice the statement does not hold exactly true for all liquids. The nature (e.g., double or triple, silvered or non-silvered) and shape of the bulb affects the rate of evaporation of one liquid more than another—aside from that calculated from the physical constants. For example the convection currents in the gas above the liquid differ greatly with the kind of receptacle used; and the fact that the gas given off by the evaporating liquid tends to keep cold the neck of the flask and thereby influences the conduction of heat through the inner glass wall, introduces a difficult

factor in the computation. The best way to reduce the rate of evaporation of liquid hydrogen is to keep it in triple-walled Dewar bulbs surrounded by liquid air—the latter being contained in a vacuum vessel or in a "Tripler bucket." When kept in this way the liquid hydrogen evaporates only about as rapidly as does liquid air when kept in an ordinary Dewar bulb. Compared with an equal volume of liquid air it requires only one-fifth the quantity of heat for vaporization. Its specific heat, however, is ten times that of liquid air or five times that of water.

Using a triple-walled Dewar bulb in good condition liquid hydrogen is in practice found to evaporate about twice as fast as liquid air. With a first class Dewar bulb, well silvered and wrapped in felt, a liter of liquid air can be made to last over two days. Five gallons can be made to last over a week. A liter of liquid hydrogen, under the same conditions, lasts about a day.

We have not as yet described liquid hydrogen and it may be as convenient to do so here as elsewhere.

Liquid hydrogen, when pure, is a colorless, transparent liquid with a well defined surface. Its surface tension is only one thirty-fifth that of water, or about one-fifth that of liquid air. It drops well and can be easily poured from one vessel to another. It does not conduct electricity, but on the contrary is slightly diamagnetic. Its coefficient of expansion is remarkable, being about ten times that of hydrogen gas, or five times greater than that of liquid oxygen. As mentioned in the preceding installment, its specific gravity is only 0.07 or i/i-jth that of water, thus being by far the lightest liquid known to exist. Naturally this is very convenient for the aeronaut.

The small density of the liquid can easily be shown by dropping into it small pieces of cork, which sink immediately to the bottom. About the only solid that will float on it is pith. Its small specific gravity explains the rapidity with which the liquid is cleared on the entrance of air snow. This "air snow," or solid air, may readily be seen by removing for a few moments the cotton-wool stopper with which the mouth of the flask is closed. When this is done a miniature "snow storm" of solid air will be seen falling into the flask—the atmosphere being actually frozen where it comes in

contact with the extremely cold vapor rising from the liquid hydrogen. This solid air sinks in the liquid hydrogen and accumulates as a pure white "snow" on the bottom of the flask.

The specific heat of liquid hydrogen is vtTy high, being nearly 6. Its latent heat is about 190 units. The high specific heat is in marked contrast with that of liquid oxygen, which is only J^. Hydrogen at ordinary temperatures is about 14 times lighter than air— Liquid hydrogen is 14 times lighter than water, and, the vapor of the hydrogen gas as it arises from the liquid is nearly 14 times heavier than hydrogen at ordinary temperatures—i.e., it is of nearly the same density as air.

A triple-walled Dewar bulb of 2 gallons' capacity weighs a little over three pounds. To

tripler bucket, containing liquid hydro- de Sure> tnis 'S n0t niUcll ; but the lightest pOSgen attached in the neck of a balloon. siD!e wrapping or receptacle for the bulb would

weigh probably twice as much again. Partly, for this reason, but more because of the rather great cost of the bulbs and their great fragility, unless well protected, it is just possible that a metal receptacle well wrapped in felt or eider-down, would better answer our purpose.

Tripler, when transporting liquid air, dispensed altogether with vacuum bulbs, and merely used cylindrical tin-buckets well wrapped with boiler felt and the whole enclosed in another bucket. The plan of one of these buckets is shown in the accompanying diagram. It will be noticed that the inner bucket is considerably smaller than the outer one, thereby allowing plenty of room for the felt wrapping. The principle of the Tripler bucket may be stated as follows: Air that is absolutely quiet is very nearly as good a heat insulator as is a vacuum. The trouble is that air cannot be kept quiescent; convection currents persist in forming and "heat" is thereby carried along. The great superiority of a good Dewar bulb over one containing a small amount of air in the "vacuum space," is alone due to this. A Dewar bulb that has not been exhausted retards evaporation to a greater degree than an ordinary vessel, for the enclosed air acts to some extent as an insulator altho considerable heat is carried by convection; but when the air is exhausted these convection currents naturally cease to exist and then the only way by which heat can be directly conducted is through the neck of the

flask where the outer and inner vessels join. Thus Tripler, by packing the space between the two tin buckets, prevented the formation of convection currents, and by using boiler felt as the packing material, prevented directed conduction to a great extent—felt being a very poor conductor of heat. Experiments have proven that eiderdown is superior to felt as a non-heat conductor, and no doubt a still better material could be found. In my own case I found that a flask well wrapped in eider-down acted nearly as good as an ordinary non-silvered Dewar bulb. Tripler frequently shipped several gallons of liquid air hundreds of miles in his "buckets" with a much smaller loss by evaporation than would be at first suspected.

Owing, however, to the fact that liquid hydrogen evaporates with a greater rapidity than liquid air, the only condition under which a Tripler bucket would be advisable would be when a very great quantity of liquid hydrogen was to be carried—say 20 gallons.

To make a Dewar bulb of this size would be extremely difficult.

In the diagram below, we show a Tripler bucket might be suspended in the neck of the balloon, thereby not only relieving the basket, but assuring it a safer place—the necessity for running a tube from the bucket to the balloon would also thereby be obviated.

The length of time a volume of liquid hydrogen will last is not directly proportionate to its volume. The larger the containing vessel, the less in proportion will be the loss by evaporation. The surfaces of solids of the same shape vary with the squares of their linear dimensions. Thus, if we have two Tripler buckets identical in shape and construction but one twice as high as the other, the internal surface of the inner bucket and of the open top will be four times as great in the one as in the other. But volume varies as the cube of the linear dimensions; so that in the case cited, the larger bucket will hold eight times as much liquid hydrogen as will the smaller bucket. Therefore, if we state the relation of surface to volume in the small bucket as a.b., the ratio in the large one will be 4a, 8b. If one bucket was three times larger than the other the ratio would be still more favorable— 9a, 27b.

Col. J. L. B. Templar, Superintendent of the English Government balloon factory at Al-dershot, has retired. Col. Templar has had sectional view of a tripler bucket long experience with matters aeronautical and USED for transporting liquid air. has been foremost in encouraging the use of the balloon in warfare. His first balloon ascents were made with a pupil of the famous Coxwell. In 1877 he brought to the attention of the War Department the possibility of the application of the balloon to military use, and has since been connected with the aeronautical branch of the Army.

Among the queer things printed nowadays which, it is claimed, bear relation to aeronautics, is the following from a French daily:

"Duels in Balloons.—In the list of fantastic duels appears two duelists who both died as a result of their encounter. The reason for the conflict was a question of preponderance in the affections of a young blond beauty, Miss Dulamare. The two American suitors could not agree on the subject of the controversy and they resolved to resort to arms and it was decided that the duel take place in the basket of a balloon. Thus it happened. The combat occurred at an altitude of 2,000 meters above the Lake des Eslaves in the valley of the Mackenzie. The balloon which carried the two adversaries landed in the water and both perished. It was not without a precedent. In France, it would seem that a similar encounter took place about a hundred years ago. But may not this be a canard or the imagination of the journalist of the time in France and in America?"





The Aero Club of New England held its first dinner at the Boston City Club on May 2nd. At the dinner the future activity and policy of the Club was discussed by the members present. Among those in attendance were the President, Prof. A. Lawrence Roteli of the Blue Hill Observatory; Prof. William H. Pickering of Harvard University; Prof. J. E. Wolff of Harvard University; Mr. Henry Howard of Boston; Mr. Emil Camus, Mr. William Harris, Mr. William Whittlesey, Mr. James H. Means, Mr. H. H. Clayton of Blue Hill Observatory; Mr. Sterling Eliot, Mr. C. E. Hellier, Mr. Charles Coules, Mr. Alfred R. Shrigley, the Seeetary and Attorney of the Club.

The idea of securing a flying machine from France was discussed very thoroughly, the idea having been advanced by Mr. Henry Howard, who said in part: ''This country is following to-day the same short-sighted policy with regard to aerial navigation as it followed with the automobile. When we first began to think seriously of automobiles, we should have brought over one of the most perfected French machines, buying its patent if necessary. Instead, we began from the beginning and developed all sorts of freak machines. To-day we are four or five years behind where we ought to be with the automobile. We are taking the same blind attitude to-day with the air machine. We ought to buy a French flying machine and let our inventors get an inspiration by seeing it fly in this country. If we could secure one of these machines for the Club, permission could probably be obtained to operate it upon the parade grounds at South Framingham. Such a machine would cost about $5,000, and could be delivered from France two or three months after ordering. Resort to France seems necessary because of the secrecy of the Wright Brothers here, a secrecy which is likely to be maintained by the Government when the machine it has contracted for is delivered."

Mr. H. H. Clayton doubted the advisability and wisdom of the suggestions made by Mr. Howard and endorsed the sentiment of Mr. James H. Means that a prize was the best way to stimulate interest in aeronautics. Mr. Clayton said, "I believe that offering a prize is one of the best ways of stimulating interest. I do not feel favorable to the idea of purchasing a French machine. French machines embody nothing essentially different from what has been made known by the Wright Brothers in connection with their experiments. It is a little early to import a machine from France. We ought to wait until they have been further developed. Some are inclined to forget that there are two sides to air navigation. There is always room for the balloon. It is a great mistake for a club to devote itself to one question. The aeroplane and the balloon furnish quite different sensations to the navigator. The one rushes and the other is motionless as far as the occupant knows. I would like to see the Club own its balloon for the recreation of the members. With such a ear it would be possible when the wind favored to take trips between Worcester and Boston in a couple of hours. Another beauty about ballooning is that there is practically no danger. The number of accidents each year as a result of ballooning is less in proportion to the number of people indulging than is the loss of life by railroad."

Mr. Charles E. Hellier saw a great chance for the Club to develop New England mechanical ability to produce a truly practical flying machine. lie said in part. "I put not long ago $5000 into a flying machine and it was a failure. It failed because the engine was not powerful enough. In order to build a flying machine that will fly, a high degree of mechanical ability is needed. That ability can be found in New England and the Club can do much to bring it out. I am convinced that the Wright Brothers have built a machine that has kept up half an hour. The limit of their flight seems to be due to the failure of the motor, which either gets hot or has trouble with the gasolene. Their machine, however, is an aeroplane, or scaling machine, and not a flying machine. If once we get money and mechanical ability together there will be little trouble about getting into the air with a real flying machine. In New England there is both the ability and the money. I do not believe that the aeroplane is or ever will be practical. They have to go at a speed of at least 40 miles an hour in order to stay up. They are exceedingly dangerous. Human intelligence can surely create a machine more powerful than the bird, a machine that will beat the air to keep itself afloat, that will be in every way under control and safe to travel in. That is the machine I am waiting to see turned out in this country."

Prof. William H. Pickering of Harvard, favored the suggestion of Mr. Howard that steps be taken to secure for the Club a French flying machine and thought that by such a method much more would be done for the waiting public than by the creation of a prize fund.

The members present voted that a committee be appointed to procure for the Club a flying machine, that said committee obtain specifications of both American and French flying machines and that the best of either country should be purchased for the Club. The committee appointed for that purpose consisted of Mr. Howard, Chairman, Prof. Pickering and Mr. Hellier. The Club also considered the purchase of a

balloon and Air. Clayton was appointed a committee of one to procure a good balloon and to raise a subscription for that purpose.

Among the other speakers of the evening were: President, Prof. A. Lawrence Rotch, Prof. John e. Wolff and Alfred R. Shrigley.


On April 20th the members were treated to a talk by Mr. Octave Chanute, the "Father of Aviation." Announcement had been made by the Aero Club of the formation of an Aviation Section, with a well planned scheme for an experimental ground and prizes, just a few days before the Bell-Chanute-Rotch-Means $25,000 aviation prize idea was made public. The two plans being somewhat similar, and alike in the amount to be raised, brought out considerable discussion of the aid such prizes would be to the art, the division of same to the best advantage and the likelihood of securing such sums of money. The plan of the Aviation Section was to secure one hundred subscribers at $250 each, while the other plan was to secure two hundred and fifty subscribers at $100.

This journal has long been urging the offering of large cash prizes and it is with the utmost pleasure that we can chronicle active steps toward this end.

Mr. Chanute told of seeing a short flight by the Wright Brothers, terminated by a slight accident to one wing, which touched the ground in making a curve. Peter Cooper Hewitt reiterated his contention that with an increase in speed the surface of the aeroplane should be reduced. In Mr. Hewitt's hydroplane, this principle was utilized. The greater the speed the more the hydroplane rose from the water, supported by the smaller planes. Mr. Hewitt suggests a system of reefing, but he has not thought out any scheme for accomplishing this mechanically.

Referring to the selection of grounds for trial Mights and for gliding, Mr. Herring brought out the point that a ground suitable for motor machines would not be suitable for gliders, but Mr. Chanute explained a way of pulling the glider into the air, from a carriage, by a cable attached to an electric motor, as was done by him at the St. Louis Exposition.

The subject of the Government trials of the Herring and Wright Brothers machine was discussed and Mr. Herring stated that the trials would be secret. Mr. Manly humorously remarked that he had seen such "secret" trials before. We learn, however, that no plans have been made by the Government officials for any secret trials, though they might be had upon request of the inventors.

At the meeting Hon. James M. Beck proposed an aeronautic demonstration in connection with the Hendrik Hudson Memorial celebration, but no plans have yet taken shape.

In this connection we would like to suggest the election of Mr. Chanute to honorary membership. The present honorary members are: Count de la Vaulx, Lieutenant Lahm and James Gordon Bennett, representing aerostation. Count de la Vaulx was the first to be thus honored. Aerostation is sport—aviation is science. With Mr. Chanute recognized, even abroad, as the foremost figure in the aviation world it would seem proper that America should be represented among the honoraries of an American club. At the meeting, Mr. A. C. Triaca contended for due recognition, for Mr. Chanute and explained that abroad he was considered the "Father of Aviation, and that all successful machines were only carrying out plans originally adopted by Mr. Chanute."

An informal dinner was tendered Mr. Chanute at the Hotel Savoy on that evening by some of the active members of the club.

On April 30th, the First Company, Signal Corps, National Guard, N. Y., listened to an illustrated lecture on aeronautics by Augustus Post, Secretary. The making read}' for an inflation of a full sized balloon kindly loaned by A. Leo Stevens, was demonstrated under the direction of Lieutenant Lahm, by the Balloon Squad of the First Company, just organized, Henry Godet, 1st Lieut., commanding. A large model balloon was loaned by A. C. Triaca, Director of the International School of Aeronautics.

The following new members have been proposed:

James Means, George H. Guy, X. H. Arnold, Howard W. Gill, Clifford B. Harrfton, A. W. Vorse, Morris Bokor.


A. Holland Forbes has presented to the Club a cup to be raced for by at least three balloons, the conditions of the race not to be decided until the day set. The morning of the race a pilot balloon wijl be sent up and then some town picked out in the covirse of the wind as an objective point. This would be most interesting and the plan is followed very often in contests in Europe.

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with the "North Adams No. i" which the Club recently purchased from A. Leo Stevens.


The Aero Club at Pittsfield has purchased a thousand meter balloon from the Stevens factory. On May 7th two sounding balloons will be sent up by Professor A. Lawrence Rotch, Director of the Blue Hill Observatory. They will be the first to be used in New England. The date is the international one arranged by various observatories in Europe and America.


On April 29th a meeting was held in the rooms of the Merchants and Manufacturers' Association.

Major 11. B. Hersey told of his experiences, Professor Warren S. Johnson spoke on the scientific side, and Mr. R. B. Brown, Engineer of the Milwaukee Gas Company, discussed arrangements for inflation for a proposed balloon contest. R. B. Watrous, Secretary of the Club, also addressed the meeting.


Charles De F. Chandler, Captain U. S. Signal Corps, left Washington the first of May for Fort Omaha, where the buildings for the aeronautic park are nearing completion. It is expected that Lieutenant Frank P. Lahm will then be placed in charge of the Aeronautical Division of the Signal Office.

Proposals were opened on April 29th for a 1,000-cubic-meter balloon for free ascensions and a 540-cubic-meter balloon for captive work. Award was made to Captain T. S. Baldwin, the lowest bidder, on May 7.

Advertisements are being sent out for a tent for housing the dirigible balloon now being built for the Signal Corps by Captain Baldwin. This tent will be erected at Fort Myer.

Captain Chandler has been relieved from duty at Washington and has left for Fort Omaha, Neb., where he will take charge of the aeronautical plant. Lieutenant Frank P. Lahm has been detailed to succeed him in charge of the Aeronautical Division.

Lieutenant Thomas Selfridge, Secretary of the Aerial Experiment Association, now at Hammondsport, N. Y., has been assigned to duty with the Signal Corps for aeronautical work and will be ordered to Washington later.


DIE AEROPLANE UND LUFTSCHRAUBEN, der statischen und dynamischen luftschiffahrt schwerer und leichter als Luft, von Dr. Wegner-Dallwitz. Small 8vo., paper, 45 pp., Illustrated with 7 diagrams. Contents-Teil I; Die Aéroplane, Die Tragschraube, Die Treibschrauben, Der Motor. Teil II; Allgemeine Luftdruckgleichung, Anwendung auf die Berechnung der Aéroplane, Die Beanspruchung des Aeroplans, Die Detriebskraft der Schwebeflieger, Die Betriebskraft der Motorballoons. Was verstehen wir unter der Fluggeschwindigkeit V, Die Tragkraft der Aéroplane, Der Handflieger, Der Aeroplan als Steuer, Der Tragschrauben, Die Tragkraft und die Betriebskraft der Tragschrauben, Die Beanspruchung bei den Tragschrauben, Die Treibschrauben, Die Treibschrauben, Die Treibkraft und die Betriebskraft der Treibschraube, Die Beanspruchung der Treibschraube. Published by C. J. E. Volckmann Nachf., Inh. Ernst Wette, Rostock i. M., Germany. L

AERIAL FLIGHT: AERODYNAMICS. Vol 1. By F. W. Lanchester. 8vo., cloth, 442 pages, 162 illustrations. Published by D. Van Nostrand Co., New York, at $6.00. Sold by Aeronautics.

Among the recent books dealing with the technique of heavier than air apparatus is one of extraordinary interest and scope. "Aerodynamics" by F. W. Lanchester, takes up' the study of air phenomena and starting with the analogies of fluid resistance gradually works up a set of formuMae and coefficients for unknown values which permits the mathematical treatment of the subject in some instances from a new point of view. The deductions drawn from time to time bear the stamp of probability and

for the most part agree with the testimony written and all of the few authorities available in this portion of the field of scientific research. The paucity of elementary data is commented upon by the author as preventing in some cases the arrival at conclusions sufficiently exact to be of the greatest advantage, which undoubtedly explains the fact that where these formulae are .ipplied in actual design such as described in section 218, considerably higher efficiencies are attained in practice with the screw propeller.

The use of several new words such as "Aerofoil," to stand for any shaped surface used in the accepted sense of an aeroplane, as a more exact term may win its way into favor, although in the general mind the conception of an aeroplane has ceased to be confined to absolutely flat surfaces.

The reasoning in connection with drift or edge resistance air vortices, and stream line construction seem well borne out in practice, while it remains to be proven that the difference between the laws of aerodynamics and hydrodynamics is not greater than appears on the surface.

The general treatment of the experimental data of Langlcy, Dines, and the author brings out several new thoughts that will well repay a careful reading of the book.


LUFTREISEN: von Prof. Johannes Poeschel, published by Fr. Willi. Grunow in Leipsiz, price 6 Mark. A new and interesting balloon book. Illustrated with photographs and diagrams.

Kein Tag vergeht mehr, ohne das uns die Zeitungen von neuen Ereignissen und Erfolgen auf diesem Gebiete zu berichten hätten. Alles was sie mitteilen, wird mit Spannung gelesen und in allen Kreisen lebhaft besprochen. — So dürfen auch die hier gebotnen Berichte über Ballonfahrten wohl das Interesse vieler auf sich lenken.

Der Verfasser ist kein Berufsluftschiffer, sondern ein Mann, dessen Lebensarbeit von der Luftschiffahrt weit abzuliegen scheint. Beinahe fünfzigjährig bestieg er zum erstenmal den Ballonkorb, da aber hat es ihn gepackt und wird ihn nicht wieder loslassen, solange die nötige körperliche Frische bei ihm noch vorhält. Wieviel hat er doch der Beschäftigung mit Luftschiffahrt zu danken. Sie hat ihm auser unvergleichlichem GenuB auch eine Fülle geistiger Anregungen gegeben. Vor allem verdient es die "Laiengeographie im Ballon," wie man sie nennen möchte, von dem Luftreisenden, den nicht bestimmte andre Gründe zum Auffrahren veranlassen, beachtet und gepflegt zu werden, ihr namentlich hat auch der Verfasser sich zugewendet. Freilich sind es erst wenige Fahrten, die er bis zum Abschlus dieser Schrift unternommen hat, immerhin hat er auf den fünfzehn Reisen bei einem Gasverbrauch von 15.400 Kubikmetern 4918 Kilometer zurückgelegt und Deutschland fast nach allen Richtungen, auch ein gut Stück Ausland überflogen. Möchte das Buch dazu beitragen, alle aufzuklären und zu bekehren, die in der Luftschifferei noch immer nichts weiter als einen müsigen und gefährlichen Sport erblicken, möchte es ihr neue Freunde und Anhänger gewinnen zu deren eigner Befriedigung und Freunde.

Das Buch ist eine der interessantesten Erscheinungen des Jahres. Die Beigabe auf den verschiednen Fahrten aufgenommener Bilder sowie einiger Karten verleiht dem Buche noch einen besondern Wert.

The sculptor-aviator Delagrange has cast a bust of Henri Deutsch de la Meurthe.

The "Ville de Paris" has been inflated again and flights will be resumed under military direction.

Some months ago, M. Charron and M. Santos Dumont made a bet, The Brazilian aeronaut wagering that within six months he would attain a speed of a hundred kilometers an hour with his hvdroplane, his own invention. Santos Dumont having lost, he has just sent M. Charron a check. The winner forwarded the 1000 francs to the Aero Club as a prize for the encouragement of aviation.

Carl E. Myers, of the "Balloon Farm," Frankfort, N. Y., has just shipped two sounding balloons to the U. S. Weather Observatory at Mount Weather. This is the only station in the United States Weather Bureau using small captive balloons and the two just sept are the first of the kind the Bureau has had. They are used to supplement the kites, on days when there is not wind enough to take the kites up. In the last nine months only five such days have occurred. It is hoped to get an altitude of from 5,000 to 10,000 feet with them, depending upon conditions, wind, etc., aloft. Such altitudes are obtained abroad with similar balloons.

The Wright Brothers Sell Their Aeroplane (?).

It is reported abroad that the Messrs. Wright have sold their patents to M. Lazare Weiller, a wealthy Jewish banker of Paris, for $100,000, conditional upon flying a specified distance at a speed of 50 kilometers an hour. How true this report is. there is no means of saying. At least, it must be doubted, we believe.

New Machines in Course of Construction.

F. E. Boland, of Newark, is building an aeroplane which will be finished in about two weeks.

Wilbur R. Kimball, of New York, has nearly finished his helicopter and will shortly begin trials. The motor will be a 40 horsepower Aero & Marine, water cooled.

The Aerial Experiment Association's aeroplane "Red Wing" has been rebuilt and is read)- for trials.

The Rene Gasnier aeroplane is being built at his chateau du Fresne, in the district of Maine-et-Loire. The apparatus has two superposed planes of 10 meters spread and 30 square meters supporting >urface. In the rear is the stabilitating plane of 3.5 square meters. A rudder is placed in front which steers laterally as well as vertically in one movement. The motor will be a 40 horsepower Antoinette. The total length is 9 meters and the weight 400 kilo-.

The Kapferer-Paulhan monoplane, which has been building during the Winter, has been taken to Buc. M. Kapferer has made a few satisfying trials and will begin trial flights a= soon as the weather i^ better. A Pelterie motor ib used.

The crack cycli.-t Jacquelin i> building an aeroplane with the carriage maker Vedrine. A 6-cylinder "\V" motor of Dutheil & Chalmers will be installed.

Edouard Bourdariat i=> buying an aeroplane of the "Chanute"' type, with 7.5 meters spread and 22.5 square meters total surface.

M. Bellocq will try at the end of May an aeroplane of his own invention, with a 50 horsepower motor.

M. Auffin-Ordt has constructed an aeroplane to be equipped with a Pelterie 40. The feature of the apparatus is an automatic equilibrium plane. Experimenting at Buc. he was satisfied with rolling along the ground for 300 to 400 meters. Everything worked perfectly, although he had to work against the wind and up hill. "It is quite certain that this apparatus will rise when the aviator will use the motor at full power."

M. Goupy has under construction a 3-superposed-plane machine. His idea is to obtain great supporting surface and diminish the spread. The motor will be a Renault 50.

The monoplane of M. Blanc made its debut on March 29th at Rouet. near Marseilles. The Pelterie motor. 35 horsepower. 45 kilos weight, worked perfectly. There are 2 two-bladed propellers of 2 meters diameter, 1.2 meter pitch. The apparatus is a two-surface, arranged "tandem." The total weight is 280 kilos. At the first trials it met with a slight accident.

Paul and Ernest Zens are constructing at Gonesse a biplane with a dihedral angle. The spread is 8.5 meters. The lower plane is 2.3 meters in depth and the upper 1.2 meters. The total carrying surface is 29.75 square meters. The rudder is in front at the end of a framework 2.5 meters long. This plane can be tilted from left to right, and serves to steer vertically and horizontally, and to be especially effectual in making turns. The apparatus weighs 300 kilos and is mounted on the usual 4-wheeled chassis. A 50-horsepower Antoinette motor will be used to actuate a single propeller 2.05 meters diameter. 1.3 meters pitch.

Zeppelin IV.

The Zeppelin IV. is nearing completion, and may be expected to make its first trials the latter end of May.

Malecot Dirigible.

The dirigible balloon built last year by M. Malecot has been removed to Issy les Moulineaux, where experiments will be conducted with it under the supervision of a special technical committee appointed by the Minister of War.

Balloon Contest at Verona.

The first aeronautical contest organized in Italy took place on March 19 at Verona. Three balloons started.

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Cheap Gas.

Aeronauts are always glad to hear of places where cheap gas can be obtained, even if they cannot get that price for themselves. The gas works at Billy-Montigny, about 50 miles north of Paris, and the works at Roubaix both sell gas for 2 cents a cubic meter—$20 for a balloon the size of the "Stevens 21," 1,000 cubic meters, recently sold to the North Adams Aero Club.

Farman and the Motor Manufacturers.

Every one knows that the rivalries of motor manufacturers have caused the present deadlock. Why cannot the Count de la Vaulx get a sufficiently powerful A or B aeroplane motor? How came Vuia to öfter his money in vain to the only three companies pretending to make aeroplane motors? Now he is getting one of the latest C models, like De la Vaulx—after the C people gave up hoping to interest Farman. Why, they had agreed to pay a friend of Farman's 20,000 francs if he could persuade Farman to make a deal with them!"

'Why could not De la Vaulx get an A or B motor?" I asked.

"Because Farman would not allow it. He won the Archdeacon prize with the A motor—in spite of the royal offers of the Bs and Cs. Having honestly fulfilled his engagement with the As, he was free to accept a B motor.

"Which he did.

"Now he has both, he lags and drags—and keeps them fighting over him like Lucifer and Michael over the body of Moses. Naturally, the As hope to keep the splendid advertisement. Naturally, Bs hope to get it from them; but they have not a really practical aeroplane motor yet, although they may have shortly. There's been lots of temptation to kill time."

You see, there are automobile motors and marine motors. There are even dirigible balloon motors. All are different, according to the need. And from the Paris point of view the true aeroplane motor is just being evolved; and jockeying and rivalry retard its evolution. All want Farman. If they can't get Farman, they'll take Delagrange.

Do you know the history of the Farman aeroplane? Delagrange, a Paris sculptor, thought of coupling two Wright gliders—front and tail—and putting in a motor. The Voisin brothers, engineers, made all the calculations and built the machine for Delagrange. And it flew—weakly. Farman quite new to the subject, simply ordered the Voisins to duplicate it for him, Delagrange being willing.

When he took delivery, the A motor was the only aeroplane-adapted one upon the Paris market. Moreover, Bleriot of the Voisin firm, a rich young man, owned the mass of A stock.

In force and lightness, tested on the ground, the famous mark showed magnificently. Weighing less than three pounds per horsepower, it was the first of the 3-cylinder type, without flywheel. It had no carburetor, for the sake of lightness. Thus its carburation was delicate; and at vital steering moments Farman had to turn round and let in more or less air.

It was water cooled. In a flimsy aeroplane frame, the vibrating motor would now twist a tube or pinch a joint, compromise the water cooling; or an essence tube would get a shake and the force weaken, letting Farman promptly down to earth.

Thus the motor that gave fifty horsepower in a rigid testing chassis yielded, say, but thirty horsepower in the air, some days more, some less, and Farman struggled with that motor—while the A strove to improve it. He had engaged to win the Archdeacon prize with it, and he finally succeeded on a very cold day, which prevented its habitual heating.

Meanwhile, the two other world-famed motor firms announced aeroplane motors— almost ready. That is, you could give your orders. But the first order they desired was that of Henri Farman.

How could it be otherwise?—Chicago Record-Herald.

Mechanics of the Military Dirigibles.

Four new non-commissioned officers chosen from the entire French Army have recently been assigned to the battalion of sapeurs-aerostiers (first regiment of engineers), to be detailed to the detachment that this body of troops furnishes to the central establishment of military aerostation at Chalais-Meudon. They will receive here instruction as mechanics for dirigible balloons throughout the present year, their main duty being the operation of gasoline engines. Outside of the time which they will give to manoeuvers of the dirigibles, these mechanics will be employed for the

present in the general service of the central establishment; but they can in the future be detached and stationed in certain localities where the dirigible balloons will be located. The four mechanics will be thoroughly instructed throughout the present year, and by January ist, next, if they show proof of the requisite knowledge, they will receive the full title of aerostatic mechanics. In the course of time they can be promoted to the rank of Adjutant.

An Airship for $22.15.

Eugene Godet's airship, which was at the Jamestown Exposition, was sold on March 28 by the officials of the Norfolk customs house for $22.15. it will be remembered that an ascent was made with it and a landing in the waters of Hampton Roads.

The Wright Brothers' Motor.

The Wright Brothers, who have received from the American Government an order for an aeroplane for the War Department, have ordered motors from the factory of Barriquand and Mare (France). Points: 40 horsepower, 4 cylinder; case of aluminum; 108 bore by 100 m. m. stroke; automatic valve; make and break ignition; automatic lubrication with circulation of oil by means of a pump; another pump sends the gasolene directly into the cylinders, as in the Antoinette motor.—Exchange.

Troubles of an Aerialist.

To the Editor: Would say that P. E. McDonnell is right in regard to a hole through the earth as per his interview in the Sunday Inter Ocean. The whales from Scotland can prove it. Lord Kelvin used to pouf-pouf the assertion. Professors in this country are just the same as Lord Kelvin. Men that go North can teach them something. I ask you one question: The stones on the icebergs—where do they come from? And broken trees and branches and ferns and. red berries? I have seen more than three tons of small stones and branches on an iceberg.

How did they get there? I say from the inside of the earth. They did not grow there—that is a sure thing. The inside of this earth is peopled the same as the outside. Another thing for your professors: What is the reason that all animals run north at the sight of a ship and if followed still run north? Professors ram down your throat the assertion that the sun causes the northern lights. I say not. The light from the inside of the earth is the cause of that.

McDonnell says there is not an airship in existence that will reach the north pole. He makes the mistake of his life. For thirty years an airship has been in existence which can go anywhere and do anything. It was ten years in Will county and has been ten years in Chicago. Wellman tried to get there with his gas bag. What fools these mortals be! He had a gas bag and he was a wind bag. It is my belief he was never out of Washington, D. C.

Greed for the dollar keeps aerial navigation back.






Put the money up and I will show you that it can be done. And T will prove to you that the earth is hollow and that there are men there. There are billions of dollars lying idle right here in Chicago, but they all want something for nothing, which they will not get from me. THE MASTER OF THE AIR.

—Chicago Tnter Ocean.

Aeronautical Show in London.

From March 21 to 2S, at the Cordingley automobile show, a section was devoted to aeronautics. Last year the aero show was held under the auspices of the Aero Club, and the trials of models brought exhibits which were lacking this year. (See "Aeronautics" for July, 1907.) Perhaps the principal exhibit could be called that of Messrs. Spencer, the balloon manufacturers, in which were shown models of various sized envelopes and full-sized baskets and valves to correspond. A feature was the aluminum

panelled valve. They also exhibited two airship frames, of triangular bamboo, the engine slightly forward of amidships and the car aft. the screw being direct driven from the propeller shaft. The engines are to be 24 and 12 horsepower, respectively.

A peculiar type of helicopter, full sized, was shown by Messrs. Dagnall, Mallinson and Porter, which consisted of an inverted trumpet-shaped structure inclosing a horizontal propeller near its larger and lower orifice. The machine has not yet been tested.

Various light motors were exhibited, together with various models, of which noteworthy were the flyers of Mr. T. W. K. Clarke.

The small balloon of the Hon. C. S. Rolls, calls to mind the smallest one ever built, that of Santos Dumont. The envelope was of Japanese silk and the balloon weighed, with everj'thing complete, including anchor, 27.5 kilos. When the envelope was folded in the basket the balloon could be carried like a valise. It was called "The Brazil." 35 kilos of ballast could be taken.

Another Parseval Airship for Germany.

A new dirigible is being built by Riedinger, of Augsburg, for the Berlin Motor Airship Company along plans of Major von Parseval, and will probably approximate the present improved Parseval in many respects. It is expected to be completed in May, the first trial to take place at Reineckendorf.

The German militaiw authorities are reported to have decided to establish an aerostatic park at Metz, and that Major Gross is at present at Metz locating a suitable place. The first airship to be stationed there will be one of 2000 c. b. m. capacity, designed by Major Gross.

It may be of interest to note the latest suspension idea of the Parseval motor balloon.

The new suspension comprises the parallel pairs of cables 1 and 2, which have the same length, and rigidly connect the middle part of the balloon with the car, as well as the oblique ropes 3 and 4 which support the projecting points of the balloon and pass


at the car under gliding rollers 5 and 6. When the car oscillates it follows circular courses at the ends of the ropes 1 and 2 while sliding by means of the rollers 5 and 6 on the sliding ropes.

In order to prevent the axis of the balloon being deformed by the sliding ropes, the dimensions of the ropes are calculated in such a manner that the circular motion of the points 7 and 8 coincides within the limits 9 and 10 of the motion of the car, which are practically to be considered, with that part of the elliptical way which corresponds to the motion of the slide ropes. The foci of the ellipses are at 11 and 12.

The advantages of this suspension are the following: A long and rigid supporting framework for the car is not necessary; the screw propeller may be located between the balloon and the car, so that it is best protected against damage when landing; owing to the large distance between the motor and the balloon, any danger of explosion is excluded; the upwardly directed tilting movement of the low placed propeller screw is strongly diminished, as under the pressure of the propeller screwr the car automatically advances and carries its center of gravity ahead; owing to this advancing and

following motion of the car, the pitching motions of the balloon produced by the variation of the speed are considerably reduced.

Consequently, in spite of the low position of the car. dynamic, effects are obtained as if the car be suspended very high. i. e., at the height of the securing points 13 and 14 of the parallel ropes. The above described car suspension unites the advantages of a low position of the car with that of a highly positioned center of gravity of the car.

The arrangement may also be used as a rigid suspension if it is desired to control the inclined position of the balloon by shifting the center of gravity of the car. In this case the car may be held in the desired position by the sliding ropes themselves by connecting the latter with a roller 15 in such a manner that the rope is prevented from slipping on the roller. The mechanical rotation of this roller produces the shifting of the car.

Aeroplanes.—Can supply at once aeroplanes fitted with 50 h.p. Renault motor. Guaranteed to fly one kilometre. W. Lecoq McBride & Co. (Authorized Agents for Renault cars), 67a, Shaftesbury Avenue W., London.

The Hon. C. S. Rolls has offered a handsome silver cup, representing a balloon, to members of the Aero Club of the United Kingdom, in a "Hare and Hounds Race" during 1908. Mr. Rolls will take the part of the hare in his new small balloon "Imp" and the pilot who lands nearest to him at the final descent will be the winner.

M. Georges Besancon, Secretary of the Aero Club of France and of the F. A. I., has been honored with the cross of The Legion of Honor and is now "Chevalier."

The Aero Club of America regrets the acceptance of the resignation of Dr. Julian P. Thomas.

The hydrogen gas reservoir, which is being erected near the park of the Aero Club of France, will be ready by June 15, it is expected. The erection of the plant was announced in the March number.

The French Dirigible Balloon Company has decided to construct an aeronat of 3000 cbm., of the De la Vaulx type. Mallet will build it.

The Syndicate of Aeronautical Industries, in France, at a meeting the last of February, decided to ask the Minister of Public Works and the railroad companies for a specially reduced tariff for the transportation of balloons and apparatus for aviation.

Among the queer things printed nowadays which, it is claimed, bear relation to aeronautics, is the following from a French daily:

"Duels in Balloons.—In the list of fantastic duels appears two duellists who both died as a result of their encounter. The reason for the conflict was a question of preponderance in the affections of a young blond beauty, .Miss Dulaniare. The two American suitors could not agree on the subject of the controversy and they resolved to resort to arms and it was decided that the duel take place in the basket of a balloon. Thus it happened. The combat occurred at an altitude of 2000 meters above the Lake des Eslaves in the valley of the Mackenzie. The balloon which carried the two adversaries landed in the water and both perished. It was not without a precedent. In France, it would seem, that a similar encounter took plaee about a hundred years ago. But may not this be a eanard or the imagination of the journalist of the time in France and in America?"


Models or manufacturing complete from plans in all materials. Repairs or special parts for machines already constructed. Our plant especially equipped for this class of work. l'Vee use of large grounds for trials, etc.

C. & A. WITTEMANN. P. 0. Box 693. Stapleton. Staten Island. N. Y.



the leader of balloon

and airship construction

all balloons absolute hydrogen

and coal gas proof


the keen sportsman of wide experience uses a "stevens balloon." Varnishing by improved electrical process.


Paris, France.

Messrs. a. c. triaca and a. Leo Stevens are ready to deliver aeroplanes of the farman no. 1 and delagrange types after trials of 1 mile in a circle.

two cent stamps for reply.

Box 181, Madison square, New York