Flying Boats


Source: akg-images

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Flying boats or seaplanes are planes that can land on water with usually no type of landing gear. Flying boats were some of the biggest aircrafts during the first half of the 20th century. They were especially an advantage during World War II because they could land on water as appose to an expensive runway.  Seaplanes aren’t as popular today due to the investment to airports during the war, but they are still used drop water on wildfires.

Frenchman Alphonse Penaud filed the first patent for a flying machine with a boat hull and retractable landing gear in 1876. Wilhelm Kress created the first seaplane, which was named Drachenflieger, in 1898. Henri Fabre flew the first successful seaplane,which was Gnome Omega-powered hydravion, this was during 1910.

Seaplanes were used in WWII to attack enemy ships using bombs. Seaplanes enabled the reach of targets that regular planes couldn’t reach.

Pan American Boeing 314 / Photo c.1939
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