Aviation and aerospace advanced rapidly in the first decades after the Wright brothers’ 1903 flight. Wind tunnels brought understanding of lift and drag, wood-and-wire biplanes gave way to the stressed-skin monoplanes, wing warping to hydraulic-boosted flight controls
World War II and the years immediately before and after were ones of soaring sophistication in aviation. They were decades of transition, the airship fading away and swept wing becoming dominant. They also heralded the future, from unmanned aircraft to solar-powered spacecraft.