Aviation in 1998
In the interests of improving safety, the Russian
Aviation Service shuts down over 200 small Russian
airlines set up since 1992. Only 53 Russian airlines now
remain from a total of 315.
A Eurocopter Super Puma helicopter operated by Bristow
Helicopters lifts a record payload of 2 crew and 41
passengers, more than twice the normal number of
passengers, during flood relief operations in Northern
Former Lockheed test pilot Anthony W. 'Tony' LeVier dies
aged 84. During his 32 years with Lockheed, he took
twenty prototypes into the air on their first flights,
survived eight crashes and a mid-air collision.
unmanned Ryan RQ4A Global Hawk flies for the first time.
The aircraft is intended to replace the United States Air
Force's Lockheed U2 in the high-altitude, long-range
Hans von Ohain, who pioneered the design of the jet
engine in Germany, dies.
7 April 30
McDonnell Douglas AH64D Longbow Apache attack helicopters
are ordered by the Dutch Government.
Fairchild Dornier launch a new regional jet at the
Schonefeld Air Show. The 55-seat 528-JET and the
stretched 100-seat 928-JET are both wide-body aircraft
due to be available by 2003.
France and Germany order the first 160 Tiger attack
helicopters from Eurocopter.
Steve Fossett's attempt at the first non-stop, round-the
world balloon flight fails but he sets a new absolute
distance record of 22,923 kilometres (14,239 miles) on
his flight from Argentina to the Coral Sea.
The Boeing EC135 Looking Glass retires from United States
Air Force (USAF) service after 40 years. It will be
replaced in the role of strategic airborne command and
control post by another derivative of the Boeing 707, the
Boeing E6B Mercury.
'Typhoon' is announced as the new name for the
Eurofighter 2000, of which 620 are on order from the four
partners involved in the aircraft's development.
The first batch of 148 Eurofighter Typhoons is
Oslo's new airport is opened at Gardermoen with a
capacity for handling 17 million passengers per annum.
The first of 276 Airbus A319s ordered by United States
Airways is delivered. This is the biggest order for
aircraft ever placed by an airline.
The trial launch and re-entry of the Atmospheric Re-entry
Demonstrator capsule is successfully accomplished.
Twelve Automated Transfer Vehicles are ordered by the
European Space Agency and will be used to take components
of the International Space Station into space.
The first American and Russian elements of the
International Space Station are connected together in
Lieutenant Colonel Robert 'Bob' Johnson, the joint
top-scoring Second World War American ace, dies aged 78.