Historic Aircraft

Polmar, Norman
October 2005
Naval History;Oct2005, Vol. 19 Issue 5, p14
The article reports that several U.S. government agencies--among them the Navy, Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency --are looking into new roles and designs for lighter-than-air (LTA) aircraft. The craft under consideration include some huge vehicles that would be far larger than the Navy's last LTAs, which were also the world's largest non-rigid airships, that is, they did not have a rigid frame encasing their gas bags, as did the German zeppelins of World War I. The U.S. Navy was in the blimp business from 1917 until 1962, when the last ZPG-3W was taken out of service. In that period a total of 241 LTAs was acquired, including 21 from allies; in addition, the Navy operated four large, rigid airships during the 1920s and 1930s.


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