The Wright Flyers 1899–1916

The kites, gliders, and aircraft that launched the “Air Age”

The Wright Flyers 1899–1916 cover

The Wright Flyers 1899–1916

The kites, gliders, and aircraft that launched the “Air Age”

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An authoritative new history and analysis of the Wright Brothers' pioneering aircraft, from their triumph in 1903, through their string of achievements in the next decade, to their eclipse in the 1910s.

Orville and Wilbur Wright, two bicycle-making brothers from Dayton, Ohio, secured their place as the most famous names in aviation history when, on December 17, 1903, they made the first powered, controlled, and sustained heavier-than-air flight. But their success over the cold and windswept Carolina dunes that day has overshadowed their many other accomplishments before and after that historic flight. The Wrights' progression from theory to analysis to ground-testing components and wing shapes, and to then flight-testing kites, gliders, and their first powered aeroplane, marked the world's first successful “X-Plane” research and development program. They established a template all subsequent aircraft have followed, one still relevant in the era of hypersonic flight and drone research.

This book traces the Wright Brothers' story, from their first success on that cold December day throughout their glory years to their eventual eclipse by other aviators. It explores in detail the process that lead them to their pioneering craft and their many subsequent achievements over the following years, and highlights their enduring importance in the age of modern flight.

Table of Contents

Introduction /1899-1902: From kites to gliders and wind tunnel research /1903: The Kitty Hawk Flyer /1904-1907: Design refinement and the 1904, 1905, and 1907 machines /1908-1909: Demonstrations in America and Europe & the Wright Military Flyer /1910-1914: The later Wright Model B, EX, and others /1915-1916: End of the Wright era /Conclusion and Assessment /Bibliography

Product details

Published Dec 24 2019
Format Paperback
Edition 1st
Extent 80
ISBN 9781472837776
Imprint Osprey Publishing
Illustrations Illustrated throughout with around 50 photos and at least 5pp of colour artwork
Dimensions 248 x 184 mm
Series X-Planes
Short code XPL 13
Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing

About the contributors


Richard P. Hallion

Richard P. Hallion holds a Ph.D. in history from t…


Adam Tooby

Adam Tooby is an internationally renowned digital…


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