On This Day in Aviation History

March 2, 2012

March 2nd in Aviation History: Concorde’s First Test Flight

Concorde's first test flight
Concorde over France during its first test flight. (Photo by BAC)
2011 – Two US servicemen are killed and one injured in a shooting on a bus at Frankfurt Airport by a Kosovar Islamic terrorist.

1981 – Japan Airlines becomes the world’s first carrier to train pilots in a computerized flight simulator.

1978 – Vladimir Remek of Czechoslovakia, while aboard Soyuz 28, becomes the first person in space not from the U.S. or Soviet Union.

1972 – The Pioneer 10 spacecraft launches from Cape Canaveral atop an Atlas-Centaur rocket enroute to Jupiter. It would become the first spacecraft to visit Jupiter, and later, the first craft to escape the Solar System. Pioneer remained in contact with Earth for nearly 31 years until communications were lost in 2003.

1969 – The first Concorde prototype (F-WTSS) makes its maiden test flight at Toulouse, France.

Live TV Coverage of Concorde Test Flight

1965 – The US Air Force and South Vietnamese Air Force commence Operation Rolling Thunder, a heavy bombing campaign against North Vietnam.

1949 – A B-50 Superfortress named Lucky Lady II lands in Fort Worth, Texas, completing the first ever nonstop, around-the-world flight in 94 hours and 1 minute. Flown by Captain James Gallagher, the plane used help from aerial refuelers to make the trip.

1943 – In the Battle of the Bismarck Sea, planes from the US Fifth Air Force and Royal Australian Air Force score a decisive victory against Japan off the coast of New Guinea, destroying 13 Japanese ships and killing nearly 3,000 men.