1905 – The First Practical Airplane
The first practical airplane took shape in May 1905, when the Wright Brothers started building the new Flyer III. It was based on the Flyer II’s components, but enhanced to eradicate its problems. The airplane’s pitch and yaw control were improved, featuring a bigger elevator and rudder. Semi-circular “blinkers” were inserted between elevator surfaces to prevent the Flyer III from sideway shifts whilst turning. Small tabs were included on the trailing propeller blade edges to maintain thrust. Most crucially, the rudder could be completely controlled by the pilot, separately from the elevator.