History UsefulNotes / Airships

31st May '16 5:27:47 AM Doug86
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Airships have inspired several tropes, including CoolAirship, ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld, AirborneAircraftCarrier, and SkyPirates. Believe it or not, those last two ''[[RealityIsUnrealistic actually happened.]]'' As time passed, powered flight against the wind has been viewed by the public as an [[ItWillNeverCatchOn impossible dream]], then as a promising innovation when it was finally accomplished by an airship that used a steam engine to fly around the Eiffel Tower. By 1915, they had become an instrument of [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne terror and mass murder]], and after the Great War, they were redeemed as [[StarshipLuxurious glamorous high-tech transportation for wealthy passengers and intrepid explorers.]] With the 1937 crash of UsefulNotes/TheHindenburg the public considered them [[MadeOfExplodium unsafe and obsolete.]] Ultimately, they have become seen as an old technology with surprising new potential.

to:

Airships have inspired several tropes, including CoolAirship, ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld, AirborneAircraftCarrier, and SkyPirates. Believe it or not, those last two ''[[RealityIsUnrealistic actually happened.]]'' As time passed, powered flight against the wind has been viewed by the public as an [[ItWillNeverCatchOn impossible dream]], then as a promising innovation when it was finally accomplished by an airship that used a steam engine to fly around the Eiffel Tower. By 1915, they had become an instrument of [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarI terror and mass murder]], and after the Great War, they were redeemed as [[StarshipLuxurious glamorous high-tech transportation for wealthy passengers and intrepid explorers.]] With the 1937 crash of UsefulNotes/TheHindenburg the public considered them [[MadeOfExplodium unsafe and obsolete.]] Ultimately, they have become seen as an old technology with surprising new potential.



Airships were a dream of early aviators even before the first manned balloon flew in 1783. In 1852, Henri Giffard first flew in a tiny 113,000 cubic foot blimp powered by a 3-horsepower steam engine which weighed several hundred pounds. It had a less-than-impressive top speed of six miles per hour. Airships would then go on to be powered by electrical motors and eventually gas engines. By 1897, David Schwartz invented the first rigid, metalclad airship. But it was not until the 1900 flight of Count Zeppelin's LZ-1 that airships began to move out of the experimental stage. At first, they were used by the military for surveillance purposes, until Zeppelin founded the world's first passenger airline, DELAG, in 1909. During UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne, Zeppelins, blimps and semirigids were used by many nations. They enjoyed much success in naval patrol and surveillance niches, but German attempts to use Zeppelins as high-altitude heavy bombers rapidly became too costly when the British defenders, after many failures, finally came up with a successful countermeasure- the incendiary bullet. They were replaced by fleets of Gotha planes. The development airships experienced during the war was vital for their later commercial service.

to:

Airships were a dream of early aviators even before the first manned balloon flew in 1783. In 1852, Henri Giffard first flew in a tiny 113,000 cubic foot blimp powered by a 3-horsepower steam engine which weighed several hundred pounds. It had a less-than-impressive top speed of six miles per hour. Airships would then go on to be powered by electrical motors and eventually gas engines. By 1897, David Schwartz invented the first rigid, metalclad airship. But it was not until the 1900 flight of Count Zeppelin's LZ-1 that airships began to move out of the experimental stage. At first, they were used by the military for surveillance purposes, until Zeppelin founded the world's first passenger airline, DELAG, in 1909. During UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne, UsefulNotes/WorldWarI, Zeppelins, blimps and semirigids were used by many nations. They enjoyed much success in naval patrol and surveillance niches, but German attempts to use Zeppelins as high-altitude heavy bombers rapidly became too costly when the British defenders, after many failures, finally came up with a successful countermeasure- the incendiary bullet. They were replaced by fleets of Gotha planes. The development airships experienced during the war was vital for their later commercial service.



After the devastating tragedy that ended rigid airship travel just as it was beginning, Helium blimps continued on, defending Allied convoys from Axis submarines with stunning success during UsefulNotes/WorldWarTwo. During the war, they escorted over 89,000 ships, losing only one to a submarine attack; as convoys that weren't protected were sunk left and right by U-Boat wolf packs. American blimps enjoyed the highest mission readiness of any aircraft during the war. After the war ended, American blimps continued to be used for a few decades as airborne early warning radar relays and sub-hunters, but that niche was driven into obsolescence with the adoption of nigh-undetectable nuclear submarine and [=ICBMs=]. In the meantime, Goodyear had continued operating a handful of blimps to advertise its brand. This stability- or some might say stagnation- went relatively undisturbed until the invention of the hot air airship in the 1970s, and their subsequent rise in advertising popularity, but even then, it was limited to the advertising niche. Many times during this fallow era from the mid-40s to the late 90s, there were attempts to revive the airship beyond its advertising role. These attempts generated a little press, but few generated any flying prototypes. One that did reach prototyping stage was the disastrous Forest Service Helistat, which consisted of four chopped-up, obsolete helicopters affixed to a spindly frame and a Cold War-era blimp envelope. The helicopters destabilized, and it fell apart and burst into flames and shrapnel within seconds of taking off, killing the pilot. Another attempt was the Aereon project, which was the subject of the popular book ''The Deltoid Pumpkin Seed,'' by John McPhee. It flew, and was a sound concept, but it failed to get funding. With each attempt at a revival never getting off the ground, airships became increasingly associated with VaporWare, and few regarded them seriously anymore.

to:

After the devastating tragedy that ended rigid airship travel just as it was beginning, Helium blimps continued on, defending Allied convoys from Axis submarines with stunning success during UsefulNotes/WorldWarTwo.UsefulNotes/WorldWarII. During the war, they escorted over 89,000 ships, losing only one to a submarine attack; as convoys that weren't protected were sunk left and right by U-Boat wolf packs. American blimps enjoyed the highest mission readiness of any aircraft during the war. After the war ended, American blimps continued to be used for a few decades as airborne early warning radar relays and sub-hunters, but that niche was driven into obsolescence with the adoption of nigh-undetectable nuclear submarine and [=ICBMs=]. In the meantime, Goodyear had continued operating a handful of blimps to advertise its brand. This stability- or some might say stagnation- went relatively undisturbed until the invention of the hot air airship in the 1970s, and their subsequent rise in advertising popularity, but even then, it was limited to the advertising niche. Many times during this fallow era from the mid-40s to the late 90s, there were attempts to revive the airship beyond its advertising role. These attempts generated a little press, but few generated any flying prototypes. One that did reach prototyping stage was the disastrous Forest Service Helistat, which consisted of four chopped-up, obsolete helicopters affixed to a spindly frame and a Cold War-era blimp envelope. The helicopters destabilized, and it fell apart and burst into flames and shrapnel within seconds of taking off, killing the pilot. Another attempt was the Aereon project, which was the subject of the popular book ''The Deltoid Pumpkin Seed,'' by John McPhee. It flew, and was a sound concept, but it failed to get funding. With each attempt at a revival never getting off the ground, airships became increasingly associated with VaporWare, and few regarded them seriously anymore.



By the 1980s, airship technology had atrophied to such an extreme, even advertising was proving to be complicated for airships. Then, a British company called Airship Industries introduced the next generation of airships. Their successful "Skyship" series of airships are in use to this day, and employ advanced composite materials, ducted fans, and vectored thrust. These airships were vastly more competent all-around than their UsefulNotes/WorldWar2-era Goodyear counterparts, and could do more than simply advertise- they can carry tourists in their spacious cabins, conduct research, and perform long-range scouting duties. Soon after, the Zeppelin Company, which had expanded into other markets following UsefulNotes/TheHindenburg crash, reentered the airship business with the advanced semi-rigid Zeppelin NT. The NT, which has recently been updated and adopted by Goodyear to replace their aging blimps, also employs vectored thrust and composites, which drastically cut the crew and maintenance costs while increasing performance.

to:

By the 1980s, airship technology had atrophied to such an extreme, even advertising was proving to be complicated for airships. Then, a British company called Airship Industries introduced the next generation of airships. Their successful "Skyship" series of airships are in use to this day, and employ advanced composite materials, ducted fans, and vectored thrust. These airships were vastly more competent all-around than their UsefulNotes/WorldWar2-era UsefulNotes/WorldWarII-era Goodyear counterparts, and could do more than simply advertise- they can carry tourists in their spacious cabins, conduct research, and perform long-range scouting duties. Soon after, the Zeppelin Company, which had expanded into other markets following UsefulNotes/TheHindenburg crash, reentered the airship business with the advanced semi-rigid Zeppelin NT. The NT, which has recently been updated and adopted by Goodyear to replace their aging blimps, also employs vectored thrust and composites, which drastically cut the crew and maintenance costs while increasing performance.



'''Offensive military-''' DeathFromAbove meets the CoolAirship, in theory. In UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne, the Germans in particular were gung ho on using Zeppelins to crush the Entente's will by bombing cities like Paris and London. Airships proved poorly suited for the task. A Zeppelin can take an immense amount of punishment, but that was rendered moot once the British- after many, many failures and a depressing 0% success rate- finally devised a method to shoot down a Zeppelin: the incendiary bullet. By war's end a third of the armada had been shot down, thanks to this invention- even though airships of the time carried as many as ''twenty-four AA guns'' and an '''autocannon,''' they [[PointDefenseless were rarely able to drive away the squadrons of fighters and their incendiary bullets]]. It didn't help that Zeppelins couldn't be produced in as great of numbers as planes, and their hangars were giant bombing targets to the enemy.

'''Defensive military-''' Airships used in a defensive strategy proved vastly more effective than using them as an offensive weapon. In UsefulNotes/WorldWarTwo, American anti-submarine blimps escorted 80,000 ships, and only lost ''one'' of their protected vessels. In UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne they were used for the same thing, but the records are fuzzier on their exact success rate. However, defensive airships became obsolete in the 1960s after the Soviets switched from bombers and diesel subs to [=ICBMs=] and nuclear subs.

to:

'''Offensive military-''' DeathFromAbove meets the CoolAirship, in theory. In UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne, UsefulNotes/WorldWarI, the Germans in particular were gung ho on using Zeppelins to crush the Entente's will by bombing cities like Paris and London. Airships proved poorly suited for the task. A Zeppelin can take an immense amount of punishment, but that was rendered moot once the British- after many, many failures and a depressing 0% success rate- finally devised a method to shoot down a Zeppelin: the incendiary bullet. By war's end a third of the armada had been shot down, thanks to this invention- even though airships of the time carried as many as ''twenty-four AA guns'' and an '''autocannon,''' they [[PointDefenseless were rarely able to drive away the squadrons of fighters and their incendiary bullets]]. It didn't help that Zeppelins couldn't be produced in as great of numbers as planes, and their hangars were giant bombing targets to the enemy.

'''Defensive military-''' Airships used in a defensive strategy proved vastly more effective than using them as an offensive weapon. In UsefulNotes/WorldWarTwo, UsefulNotes/WorldWarII, American anti-submarine blimps escorted 80,000 ships, and only lost ''one'' of their protected vessels. In UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne UsefulNotes/WorldWarI they were used for the same thing, but the records are fuzzier on their exact success rate. However, defensive airships became obsolete in the 1960s after the Soviets switched from bombers and diesel subs to [=ICBMs=] and nuclear subs.
11th Nov '15 12:55:43 PM h27kim
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'''AirborneAircraftCarrier-''' An unorthodox combination of the above two, and in some ways superior to both. Invented in 1917, the aircraft carrier airship was originally intended to use its parasite fighter airplanes as a diversion or protection so that the then-lightened airship could ascend out of range and escape. Eventually, the carriers evolved from Zeppelins launching airplanes hanging off the keel to a launch-and-recover "trapeze" system connected to an internal hangar bay. The rationale evolved as well: the airship would use its immense range and endurance to serve as a kind of flying airbase to the aircraft, by proxy extending their range and endurance. Famously, two sister carriers, the Akron and Macon, crashed in separate storms, but both were due to human error, rather than being a poor concept. Still, as aircraft's ranges grew, the carriers were no longer necessary to fly sorties out at sea, and they became obsolete as well.

to:

'''AirborneAircraftCarrier-''' An unorthodox combination of the above two, and in some ways superior to both. Invented in 1917, the aircraft carrier airship was originally intended to use its parasite fighter airplanes as a diversion or protection so that the then-lightened airship could ascend out of range and escape. Eventually, the carriers evolved from Zeppelins launching airplanes hanging off the keel to a launch-and-recover "trapeze" system connected to an internal hangar bay. The rationale evolved as well: the airship would use its immense range and endurance to serve as a kind of flying airbase to the aircraft, by proxy extending their range and endurance. Famously, two sister carriers, carriers of US Navy, the USS Akron and USS Macon, crashed in separate storms, with Admiral Moffet, the chief of US Naval airship program, being killed aboard the Akron, but both were due to human error, rather than being a poor concept. Still, as aircraft's ranges grew, the carriers were no longer necessary to fly sorties out at sea, and they became obsolete as well.
18th Sep '15 4:46:33 AM Pavlov
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It should also be mentioned that helium was adopted on a large scale after the Hindenburg disaster "proved" hydrogen too dangerous, but the Hindenburg was - again - and old design using outdated technology. In the current age, with our enormous advancements, it's perfectly possible to build extremely safe hydrogen-filled airships. The reason why this is not done isn't practical - it's just a matter of public fear.

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It should also be mentioned that helium was adopted on a large scale after the Hindenburg disaster "proved" hydrogen too dangerous, but the Hindenburg was - again - and an old design using outdated technology. In the current age, with our enormous advancements, it's perfectly possible to build extremely safe hydrogen-filled airships. The reason why this is not done isn't practical - it's just a matter of public fear.
13th Sep '15 2:31:11 AM DeepRed
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Airships are often portrayed in the media as being MadeOfExplodium, which is somewhat justified, as there were dozens of hydrogen-related airship crashes, but oftentimes [[InsaneTrollLogic even helium blimps will be shown exploding in flames for no reason.]] The public at large seems to stereotype airships as ruinously expensive, disaster-prone, obsolete aircraft, with top speeds in the single digits, [[MadeOfPlasticine and that can be shot down with one shot from a BB gun.]] Oh, and [[YouCanPanicNow the helium is running out.]] These stereotypes are all either untrue or gross exaggerations. Most of these stereotypes are born out of a warped sense of scale, or simple ignorance, so it's no surprise that their accuracy is spotty.

to:

Airships are often portrayed in the media as being MadeOfExplodium, which is somewhat justified, as there were dozens of hydrogen-related airship crashes, but oftentimes [[InsaneTrollLogic even helium blimps will be shown exploding in flames for no reason.]] The public at large seems to stereotype airships as ruinously expensive, disaster-prone, obsolete aircraft, with top speeds in the single digits, [[MadeOfPlasticine and that can be shot down with one shot from a BB gun.]] Oh, and [[YouCanPanicNow the helium is is]] [[TerminallyDependentSociety running out.]] These stereotypes are all either untrue or gross exaggerations. Most of these stereotypes are born out of a warped sense of scale, or simple ignorance, so it's no surprise that their accuracy is spotty.
7th Sep '15 6:30:14 PM nombretomado
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[[ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld Zeppelins,]] or rigid airships, are the largest and most impressive category of airship. Count Zeppelin first invented and flew the fully rigid aircraft in 1900, and most now refer to all rigid airships as Zeppelins in his honor. Zeppelins are defined by their structure -- they have a metal or wooden frames, in which usually ten to thirty independent, unpressurized balloons called gas cells are suspended. All but the earliest Zeppelins have an internal keel that runs from bow to stern, where vast majority of the rooms, passenger decks, cargo holds and supplies are located, and which can be used to access different areas of the ship. [[http://www.aeroscraft.com/ More recent]] rigid airships can use different designs, some using a rigid internal structure to add strength to the exterior frame, and some using rigid panels instead of a canvas covering. Metalclads, or all-metal airships, are a rare subcategory of rigid airship. Some notable examples of Zeppelins would be the ''Graf Zeppelin'' and the ''{{Hindenburg}}.''

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[[ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld Zeppelins,]] or rigid airships, are the largest and most impressive category of airship. Count Zeppelin first invented and flew the fully rigid aircraft in 1900, and most now refer to all rigid airships as Zeppelins in his honor. Zeppelins are defined by their structure -- they have a metal or wooden frames, in which usually ten to thirty independent, unpressurized balloons called gas cells are suspended. All but the earliest Zeppelins have an internal keel that runs from bow to stern, where vast majority of the rooms, passenger decks, cargo holds and supplies are located, and which can be used to access different areas of the ship. [[http://www.aeroscraft.com/ More recent]] rigid airships can use different designs, some using a rigid internal structure to add strength to the exterior frame, and some using rigid panels instead of a canvas covering. Metalclads, or all-metal airships, are a rare subcategory of rigid airship. Some notable examples of Zeppelins would be the ''Graf Zeppelin'' and the ''{{Hindenburg}}.''
UsefulNotes/TheHindenburg.
7th Sep '15 6:30:03 PM nombretomado
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Due to the obvious size incentive, airships are quite large. The ''{{Hindenburg}}'' was the largest, at 804 feet in length and 135 feet in diameter. The interior was somewhat like a cross between a fancy hotel, a luxury train, and an ocean liner, with staterooms for 70 passengers. It contained two hundred thousand cubic meters -- or over seven million cubic feet -- of hydrogen gas, which provided 250 tons of lift- at a time when the world's heaviest airplane had a maximum takeoff weight of 56 tons. It could fly at about 130 km/h, or 85 mph. Airships in general are slightly slower than helicopters(hybrids about the same), and between 1/4 and 1/5 as fast as a jet airliner. The world flight endurance record is held by a UsefulNotes/ColdWar-era military airship called ''Snowbird,'' which stayed aloft with a crew of 13 for ten and a half days, and crossed the Atlantic twice in that time. Even small blimps are efficient enough to stay aloft for more than 24 hours at a time.

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Due to the obvious size incentive, airships are quite large. The ''{{Hindenburg}}'' UsefulNotes/TheHindenburg was the largest, at 804 feet in length and 135 feet in diameter. The interior was somewhat like a cross between a fancy hotel, a luxury train, and an ocean liner, with staterooms for 70 passengers. It contained two hundred thousand cubic meters -- or over seven million cubic feet -- of hydrogen gas, which provided 250 tons of lift- at a time when the world's heaviest airplane had a maximum takeoff weight of 56 tons. It could fly at about 130 km/h, or 85 mph. Airships in general are slightly slower than helicopters(hybrids about the same), and between 1/4 and 1/5 as fast as a jet airliner. The world flight endurance record is held by a UsefulNotes/ColdWar-era military airship called ''Snowbird,'' which stayed aloft with a crew of 13 for ten and a half days, and crossed the Atlantic twice in that time. Even small blimps are efficient enough to stay aloft for more than 24 hours at a time.



The inside of a large airship is unlike any other aircraft. Because airships are both much larger and much less structurally dense than other aircraft, combined with the fact that they can carry larger payloads than any other type of aircraft, they must have [[UnnecessarilyLargeInterior very large, spacious interiors]] in order to facilitate proper weight distribution throughout the hull. This is the primary reason why the ''{{Hindenburg}}'' stands to this day as having the most interior space of any aircraft, just the A deck alone had more floor space than all 3 decks of the world's largest passenger jet, the Airbus A380. On military and commercial craft, this space is dedicated to long corridors with fuel, crew accomidations and supplies, interspersed with [[AirborneAircraftCarrier aircraft hangars]] and cargo bays, respectively. On luxury craft like the ''Graf Zeppelin ll'' and the ''Hindenburg,'' this space was devoted to promenades, staterooms, dining rooms, lounges, bars, and so on and so forth. [[TheBridge The gondolas]] of large airships were quite amazing, they were large, wrapped with windows from floor to ceiling. The airship would be controlled with a spoked helm and circular engine telegraphs, [[TheSkyIsAnOcean just like on a nautical ship,]] and the officers and TheCaptain would be dressed in full naval regalia - [[JustifiedTrope justified]], as they were usually recruited from the surface fleet.

to:

The inside of a large airship is unlike any other aircraft. Because airships are both much larger and much less structurally dense than other aircraft, combined with the fact that they can carry larger payloads than any other type of aircraft, they must have [[UnnecessarilyLargeInterior very large, spacious interiors]] in order to facilitate proper weight distribution throughout the hull. This is the primary reason why the ''{{Hindenburg}}'' UsefulNotes/TheHindenburg stands to this day as having the most interior space of any aircraft, just the A deck alone had more floor space than all 3 decks of the world's largest passenger jet, the Airbus A380. On military and commercial craft, this space is dedicated to long corridors with fuel, crew accomidations and supplies, interspersed with [[AirborneAircraftCarrier aircraft hangars]] and cargo bays, respectively. On luxury craft like the ''Graf Zeppelin ll'' and the ''Hindenburg,'' this space was devoted to promenades, staterooms, dining rooms, lounges, bars, and so on and so forth. [[TheBridge The gondolas]] of large airships were quite amazing, they were large, wrapped with windows from floor to ceiling. The airship would be controlled with a spoked helm and circular engine telegraphs, [[TheSkyIsAnOcean just like on a nautical ship,]] and the officers and TheCaptain would be dressed in full naval regalia - [[JustifiedTrope justified]], as they were usually recruited from the surface fleet.



Though the ''Graf Zeppelin'' and the Zeppelin airline in general became known as an icon of safety, like all aircraft of the time, there were still safety problems. The size of airships had increased rapidly, but the materials, design, flight procedures and technology of the early 20th century were all still extremely primitive. Even the Americans, who had switched to Helium instead of hazardous Hydrogen, were met with crushing tragedies due to the loss of their two sister [[FlyingAircraftCarrier aircraft carriers]] ''Akron'' and ''Macon.'' Both were lost in storms at sea, the ''Akron'' due to crew error and a malfunctioning altimeter, and ''Macon'' due to a flawed post-design modification to the tail fins, combined with improper handling. Meanwhile, the British unsuccessfully attempted to bring their "Imperial Airship Scheme" to fruition. The British government's bid for the project was the R101, which was the world's largest and most luxurious skyliner to date. However, due to appalling build quality, flying headfirst into a storm in spite of warnings, insufficient testing and {{egregious}} leadership incompetence, the R101 crashed on her maiden voyage (hold on, this sounds [[UsefulNotes/RMSTitanic extremely familiar...]]) The competing design, R-100, despite being very well-built, was subsequently scrapped. After this rather inauspicious series of events, the wreckage of the doomed R-101 was collected and reforged into a brand-new airship, this one surpassing even the doomed R101 in sheer size and luxury: [[TemptingFate the LZ-129]] ''{{Hindenburg}}''. These events marked the beginning of the end. The demise of the ''Hindenburg'' brought an extremely abrupt end to the rigid airship. Its explosion was literally the penultimate flight of any passenger Zeppelin, [[NoOntologicalInertia and by 1940 not a single one remained.]]

to:

Though the ''Graf Zeppelin'' and the Zeppelin airline in general became known as an icon of safety, like all aircraft of the time, there were still safety problems. The size of airships had increased rapidly, but the materials, design, flight procedures and technology of the early 20th century were all still extremely primitive. Even the Americans, who had switched to Helium instead of hazardous Hydrogen, were met with crushing tragedies due to the loss of their two sister [[FlyingAircraftCarrier aircraft carriers]] ''Akron'' and ''Macon.'' Both were lost in storms at sea, the ''Akron'' due to crew error and a malfunctioning altimeter, and ''Macon'' due to a flawed post-design modification to the tail fins, combined with improper handling. Meanwhile, the British unsuccessfully attempted to bring their "Imperial Airship Scheme" to fruition. The British government's bid for the project was the R101, which was the world's largest and most luxurious skyliner to date. However, due to appalling build quality, flying headfirst into a storm in spite of warnings, insufficient testing and {{egregious}} leadership incompetence, the R101 crashed on her maiden voyage (hold on, this sounds [[UsefulNotes/RMSTitanic extremely familiar...]]) The competing design, R-100, despite being very well-built, was subsequently scrapped. After this rather inauspicious series of events, the wreckage of the doomed R-101 was collected and reforged into a brand-new airship, this one surpassing even the doomed R101 in sheer size and luxury: [[TemptingFate the LZ-129]] ''{{Hindenburg}}''.''[[UsefulNotes/TheHindenburg Hindenburg]]''. These events marked the beginning of the end. The demise of the ''Hindenburg'' brought an extremely abrupt end to the rigid airship. Its explosion was literally the penultimate flight of any passenger Zeppelin, [[NoOntologicalInertia and by 1940 not a single one remained.]]



By the 1980s, airship technology had atrophied to such an extreme, even advertising was proving to be complicated for airships. Then, a British company called Airship Industries introduced the next generation of airships. Their successful "Skyship" series of airships are in use to this day, and employ advanced composite materials, ducted fans, and vectored thrust. These airships were vastly more competent all-around than their UsefulNotes/WorldWar2-era Goodyear counterparts, and could do more than simply advertise- they can carry tourists in their spacious cabins, conduct research, and perform long-range scouting duties. Soon after, the Zeppelin Company, which had expanded into other markets following the ''{{Hindenburg}}'' crash, reentered the airship business with the advanced semi-rigid Zeppelin NT. The NT, which has recently been updated and adopted by Goodyear to replace their aging blimps, also employs vectored thrust and composites, which drastically cut the crew and maintenance costs while increasing performance.

to:

By the 1980s, airship technology had atrophied to such an extreme, even advertising was proving to be complicated for airships. Then, a British company called Airship Industries introduced the next generation of airships. Their successful "Skyship" series of airships are in use to this day, and employ advanced composite materials, ducted fans, and vectored thrust. These airships were vastly more competent all-around than their UsefulNotes/WorldWar2-era Goodyear counterparts, and could do more than simply advertise- they can carry tourists in their spacious cabins, conduct research, and perform long-range scouting duties. Soon after, the Zeppelin Company, which had expanded into other markets following the ''{{Hindenburg}}'' UsefulNotes/TheHindenburg crash, reentered the airship business with the advanced semi-rigid Zeppelin NT. The NT, which has recently been updated and adopted by Goodyear to replace their aging blimps, also employs vectored thrust and composites, which drastically cut the crew and maintenance costs while increasing performance.
7th Sep '15 6:29:38 PM nombretomado
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Airships have inspired several tropes, including CoolAirship, ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld, AirborneAircraftCarrier, and SkyPirates. Believe it or not, those last two ''[[RealityIsUnrealistic actually happened.]]'' As time passed, powered flight against the wind has been viewed by the public as an [[ItWillNeverCatchOn impossible dream]], then as a promising innovation when it was finally accomplished by an airship that used a steam engine to fly around the Eiffel Tower. By 1915, they had become an instrument of [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne terror and mass murder]], and after the Great War, they were redeemed as [[StarshipLuxurious glamorous high-tech transportation for wealthy passengers and intrepid explorers.]] With the 1937 crash of the ''{{Hindenburg}},'' the public considered them [[MadeOfExplodium unsafe and obsolete.]] Ultimately, they have become seen as an old technology with surprising new potential.

to:

Airships have inspired several tropes, including CoolAirship, ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld, AirborneAircraftCarrier, and SkyPirates. Believe it or not, those last two ''[[RealityIsUnrealistic actually happened.]]'' As time passed, powered flight against the wind has been viewed by the public as an [[ItWillNeverCatchOn impossible dream]], then as a promising innovation when it was finally accomplished by an airship that used a steam engine to fly around the Eiffel Tower. By 1915, they had become an instrument of [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne terror and mass murder]], and after the Great War, they were redeemed as [[StarshipLuxurious glamorous high-tech transportation for wealthy passengers and intrepid explorers.]] With the 1937 crash of the ''{{Hindenburg}},'' UsefulNotes/TheHindenburg the public considered them [[MadeOfExplodium unsafe and obsolete.]] Ultimately, they have become seen as an old technology with surprising new potential.
16th May '15 8:12:27 AM CrankCase
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Airships were a dream of early aviators even before the first manned balloon flew in 1783. In 1852, Henri Giffard first flew in a tiny 113,000 cubic foot blimp powered by a 3-horsepower steam engine which weighed several hundred pounds. It had a less-than-impressive top speed of six miles per hour. Airships would then go on to be powered by electrical motors and eventually gas engines. By 1897, David Schwartz invented the first rigid, metalclad airship. But it was not until the 1900 flight of Count Zeppelin's LZ-1 that airships began to move out of the experimental stage. At first, they were used by the military for surveillance purposes, until Zeppelin founded the world's first passenger airline, DELAG, in 1909. During UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne, Zeppelins, blimps and semirigids were used by many nations. They enjoyed much success in naval patrol and surveillance niches, but German attempts to use Zeppelins as high-altitude heavy bombers rapidly became too costly when the British defenders, after many failures, finally came up with a successful countermeasure- the incindiary bullet. They were replaced by fleets of Gotha planes. The development airships experienced during the war was vital for their later commercial service.

to:

Airships were a dream of early aviators even before the first manned balloon flew in 1783. In 1852, Henri Giffard first flew in a tiny 113,000 cubic foot blimp powered by a 3-horsepower steam engine which weighed several hundred pounds. It had a less-than-impressive top speed of six miles per hour. Airships would then go on to be powered by electrical motors and eventually gas engines. By 1897, David Schwartz invented the first rigid, metalclad airship. But it was not until the 1900 flight of Count Zeppelin's LZ-1 that airships began to move out of the experimental stage. At first, they were used by the military for surveillance purposes, until Zeppelin founded the world's first passenger airline, DELAG, in 1909. During UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne, Zeppelins, blimps and semirigids were used by many nations. They enjoyed much success in naval patrol and surveillance niches, but German attempts to use Zeppelins as high-altitude heavy bombers rapidly became too costly when the British defenders, after many failures, finally came up with a successful countermeasure- the incindiary incendiary bullet. They were replaced by fleets of Gotha planes. The development airships experienced during the war was vital for their later commercial service.



After the war, the military and the public at large became fascinated with airships. This ushered in the "Golden Age of Airships," which began in the mid 1920s and ended by 1940. In the interim, militaries successfully experimented with creating true [[AirborneAircraftCarrier airborne aircraft carriers]]. Advertisers found small blimps useful for carrying brand logos, and the Russians used them to carry cargo to far-flung, remote regions. But the most famous and popular use was as luxury transportation. The ''Graf Zeppelin,'' the most successful airship in history, become a beloved international icon. It circumnavigated the world many times faster than the airplanes before it. She traveled to the north pole, visited great cities and monuments, and eventually settled into a transatlantic route, becoming the world's first transcontinental airliner. Her safety record was perfect, and she flew over one million miles. Many other airships saw success during this time, but all was not well...

to:

After the war, the military and the public at large became fascinated with airships. This ushered in the "Golden Age of Airships," which began in the mid 1920s and ended by 1940. In the interim, militaries successfully experimented with creating true [[AirborneAircraftCarrier airborne aircraft carriers]]. Advertisers found small blimps useful for carrying brand logos, and the Russians used them to carry cargo to far-flung, remote regions. But the most famous and popular use was as luxury transportation. The ''Graf Zeppelin,'' the most successful airship in history, become a beloved international icon. It circumnavigated the world many times faster than the airplanes before it. She traveled travelled to the north pole, visited great cities and monuments, and eventually settled into a transatlantic route, becoming the world's first transcontinental airliner. Her safety record was perfect, and she flew over one million miles. Many other airships saw success during this time, but all was not well...
16th May '15 8:06:23 AM CrankCase
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The inside of a large airship is unlike any other aircraft. Because airships are both much larger and much less structurally dense than other aircraft, combined with the fact that they can carry larger payloads than any other type of aircraft, they must have [[UnnecessarilyLargeInterior very large, spacious interiors]] in order to facilitate proper weight distribution throughout the hull. This is the primary reason why the ''{{Hindenburg}}'' stands to this day as having the most interior space of any aircraft, just the A deck alone had more floor space than all 3 decks of the world's largest passenger jet, the Airbus A380. On military and commercial craft, this space is dedicated to long corridors with fuel, crew accomidations and supplies, interspersed with [[AirborneAircraftCarrier aircraft hangars]] and cargo bays, respectively. On luxury craft like the ''Graf Zeppelin ll'' and the ''Hindenburg,'' this space was devoted to promenades, staterooms, dining rooms, lounges, bars, and so on and so forth. [[TheBridge The gondolas]] of large airships were quite amazing, they were large, wrapped with windows from floor to cieling. The airship would be controlled with a spoked helm and circular engine telegraphs, [[TheSkyIsAnOcean just like on a nautical ship,]] and the officers and TheCaptain would be dressed in full naval regalia - [[JustifiedTrope justified]], as they were usually recruited from the surface fleet.

to:

The inside of a large airship is unlike any other aircraft. Because airships are both much larger and much less structurally dense than other aircraft, combined with the fact that they can carry larger payloads than any other type of aircraft, they must have [[UnnecessarilyLargeInterior very large, spacious interiors]] in order to facilitate proper weight distribution throughout the hull. This is the primary reason why the ''{{Hindenburg}}'' stands to this day as having the most interior space of any aircraft, just the A deck alone had more floor space than all 3 decks of the world's largest passenger jet, the Airbus A380. On military and commercial craft, this space is dedicated to long corridors with fuel, crew accomidations and supplies, interspersed with [[AirborneAircraftCarrier aircraft hangars]] and cargo bays, respectively. On luxury craft like the ''Graf Zeppelin ll'' and the ''Hindenburg,'' this space was devoted to promenades, staterooms, dining rooms, lounges, bars, and so on and so forth. [[TheBridge The gondolas]] of large airships were quite amazing, they were large, wrapped with windows from floor to cieling.ceiling. The airship would be controlled with a spoked helm and circular engine telegraphs, [[TheSkyIsAnOcean just like on a nautical ship,]] and the officers and TheCaptain would be dressed in full naval regalia - [[JustifiedTrope justified]], as they were usually recruited from the surface fleet.
4th May '15 11:10:55 AM erforce
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Though the ''Graf Zeppelin'' and the Zeppelin airline in general became known as an icon of safety, like all aircraft of the time, there were still safety problems. The size of airships had increased rapidly, but the materials, design, flight procedures and technology of the early 20th century were all still extremely primitive. Even the Americans, who had switched to Helium instead of hazardous Hydrogen, were met with crushing tragedies due to the loss of their two sister [[FlyingAircraftCarrier aircraft carriers]] ''Akron'' and ''Macon.'' Both were lost in storms at sea, the ''Akron'' due to crew error and a malfunctioning altimeter, and ''Macon'' due to a flawed post-design modification to the tail fins, combined with improper handling. Meanwhile, the British unsuccessfully attempted to bring their "Imperial Airship Scheme" to fruition. The British government's bid for the project was the R101, which was the world's largest and most luxurious skyliner to date. However, due to appalling build quality, flying headfirst into a storm in spite of warnings, insufficient testing and {{egregious}} leadership incompetence, the R101 crashed on her maiden voyage (hold on, this sounds [[{{Titanic}} extremely familiar...]]) The competing design, R-100, despite being very well-built, was subsequently scrapped. After this rather inauspicious series of events, the wreckage of the doomed R-101 was collected and reforged into a brand-new airship, this one surpassing even the doomed R101 in sheer size and luxury: [[TemptingFate the LZ-129]] ''{{Hindenburg}}''. These events marked the beginning of the end. The demise of the ''Hindenburg'' brought an extremely abrupt end to the rigid airship. Its explosion was literally the penultimate flight of any passenger Zeppelin, [[NoOntologicalInertia and by 1940 not a single one remained.]]

to:

Though the ''Graf Zeppelin'' and the Zeppelin airline in general became known as an icon of safety, like all aircraft of the time, there were still safety problems. The size of airships had increased rapidly, but the materials, design, flight procedures and technology of the early 20th century were all still extremely primitive. Even the Americans, who had switched to Helium instead of hazardous Hydrogen, were met with crushing tragedies due to the loss of their two sister [[FlyingAircraftCarrier aircraft carriers]] ''Akron'' and ''Macon.'' Both were lost in storms at sea, the ''Akron'' due to crew error and a malfunctioning altimeter, and ''Macon'' due to a flawed post-design modification to the tail fins, combined with improper handling. Meanwhile, the British unsuccessfully attempted to bring their "Imperial Airship Scheme" to fruition. The British government's bid for the project was the R101, which was the world's largest and most luxurious skyliner to date. However, due to appalling build quality, flying headfirst into a storm in spite of warnings, insufficient testing and {{egregious}} leadership incompetence, the R101 crashed on her maiden voyage (hold on, this sounds [[{{Titanic}} [[UsefulNotes/RMSTitanic extremely familiar...]]) The competing design, R-100, despite being very well-built, was subsequently scrapped. After this rather inauspicious series of events, the wreckage of the doomed R-101 was collected and reforged into a brand-new airship, this one surpassing even the doomed R101 in sheer size and luxury: [[TemptingFate the LZ-129]] ''{{Hindenburg}}''. These events marked the beginning of the end. The demise of the ''Hindenburg'' brought an extremely abrupt end to the rigid airship. Its explosion was literally the penultimate flight of any passenger Zeppelin, [[NoOntologicalInertia and by 1940 not a single one remained.]]
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