On This Day in Aviation History

February 16, 2012

February 16th in Aviation History: Kobe Airport Opens on Man-Made Island, First Production Airbus A310 Unveiled

Kobe Airport during construction in 2003, as seen from the NASA Earth Observatory spacecraft
Kobe Airport during construction in 2003, as seen from the NASA Earth Observatory spacecraft. (Photo by NASA)
2009 – An entire South African Airways crew is arrested at London Heathrow Airport after five kilos of cocaine are allegedly discovered in a bag. It is the second drug arrest of an entire SAA crew for drug smuggling within three weeks.

2006 – Kobe Airport (UKB), built on a man-made island near Kobe, Japan, opens for airline service.

1998 – China Airlines Flight 676, an Airbus A300-622R (B-1814), crashes after a failed go-around on approach to Chiang Kai Shek International Airport in Taiwan in light rain and fog. Trying to climb again at a pitch of over 40 degrees, the plane stalled at an altitude of 2,750ft, crashing just off airport property. All 196 on the plane and six people on the ground were killed.

1982 – The first production Airbus A310 is rolled out at the factory in Toulouse, France, destined for Swissair as the launch customer.

1960 – The Vought F8U-2N Crusader interceptor makes its maiden flight in Dallas, Texas.

1912 – Frank Coffyn takes aerial photographs of New York City with a cinema camera while controlling his airplane with his feet and knees.

1903 – Traian Vuia presents to the Academy of the Sciences of Paris the possibility of flying with a heavier-than-air mechanical machine, but it was rejected for being impossible, receiving the response, “The problem of flight with a machine which weighs more than air cannot be solved and it is only a dream.” Traian Vuia would later take his first flight on a very short, 12-meter trip, on March 18, 1906.