Friday, June 24, 2016

Hindenburg Disaster



Today's picture is from May 6, 1936, and it shows the crash of the German Zeppelin the Hindenburg. The German airships were inflated with Hydrogen. Hydrogen was selected because it has superior lifting characteristics over all other gases. The downside is the Hydrogen is explosive. The highly publicized crash was pretty much the death knell for lighter than air craft. 

4 comments:

  1. My dad (who is now 101 years young), saw the Hindenburg fly over Providence, Rhode Island on its way to what would shortly become its doom. I would guess that the Zeppelin passed over Providence some time between 12:00 noon (when it was over Boston) and 3:00 pm (when it flew over New York City). My dad has often described to me how everyone was in the streets looking up and pointing; and then they heared the terrible news of the crash on the radio a few hours later. Coincidentally, Providence Rhode Island has a beautiful Art Deco office building that was built in the 1920s and closely resembles the "Daily Planet" building in the famous Superman comic books. Although it's official name was the "Industrial Trust" building, it has always been called the "Superman Building;" and it had a docking station and waiting area on the top in anticipation of the expansion of this type of air travel. Of course, that all came to an end on May 6, 1936. If you have a chance, check out the pictures of the "Superman Building" in Providence. It's still there, although currently empty and still beautiful.

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    1. Beautiful, grand old building! Thanks for sharing the history with us.
      -Anne K.

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  2. From history.com:

    U.S. law prevented the Hindenburg from using helium instead of hydrogen, which is more flammable.
    After the crash of the hydrogen-filled R101, in which most of the crew died in the subsequent fire rather than the impact itself, Hindenburg designer Hugo Eckener sought to use helium, a less flammable lifting gas. However, the United States, which had a monopoly on the world supply of helium and feared that other countries might use the gas for military purposes, banned its export, and the Hindenburg was reengineered. After the Hindenburg disaster, American public opinion favored the export of helium to Germany for its next great zeppelin, the LZ 130, and the law was amended to allow helium export for nonmilitary use. After the German annexation of Austria in 1938, however, Secretary of Interior Harold Ickes refused to ink the final contract.

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  3. Please change the word 'the'to' that'. You must be from west Texas, who else would stay away from the internet for so long?

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