1940 in aviation

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Years in aviation: 1937 1938 1939 1940 1941 1942 1943
Centuries: 19th century · 20th century · 21st century
Decades: 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s
Years: 1937 1938 1939 1940 1941 1942 1943

This is a list of aviation-related events from 1940:

Events[edit]

January[edit]

February[edit]

March[edit]

  • The United States begins construction of a U.S. Navy seaplane base at Midway Atoll.[9]
  • March 2 – The United Kingdom and France promise to send 100 bombers with crews and bombs to assist Finland at once, but do not follow through on the promise.[10]
  • March 6 – France informs the Finnish government that it will dispatch an expeditionary force including 72 bombers to Finland on March 13, but the Winter War ends before the French force can begin its journey.[11]
  • March 13 – The Winter War between the Soviet Union and Finland ends in the defeat of Finland. During the 3½-month war, the Finnish Air Force has grown from 96 to 287 aircraft,[12] and has lost 62 aircraft in air-to-air combat and 59 more damaged beyond repair, while the Soviet Union has lost between 700 and 900[5] – 725 confirmed destroyed and about 200 unconfirmed – of the 2,500 to 3,000 aircraft it has committed to the campaign, and another 300 damaged. The Soviet Air Force has dropped 150,000 bombs – about 7,500 tons (6,803,955 kg) of bombs – on Finnish territory, but has performed poorly; its operations in early December 1939 had failed to disrupt Finnish mobilization and, despite unusually clear weather in January and February, it failed to disrupt the lone railroad connecting Finland with the outside world for more than a few hours at a time or to disrupt Finnish merchant shipping, despite 60 air raids on Finnish ports.[13]
  • March 16 – The United Kingdom suffers its first civilian air-raid casualties of the war after a raid by the Luftwaffe '​s Kampfgeschwader 26 on Scapa Flow.
  • March 19–20 (overnight) – Royal Air Force Bomber Command conducts its first attack of World War II against a land target, when 20 Hampdens and 30 Whitleys strike the German seaplane base at Hörnum on the island of Sylt. One Whitley is lost.[14][15]
  • March 25 – The United States Government grants permission to American aircraft manufacturers to sell advanced combat aircraft to countries fighting the Axis powers.

April[edit]

May[edit]

June[edit]

July[edit]

  • July 3
    • British bombers make a daylight attack against German barges assembling at Rotterdam in anticipation of an invasion of the United Kingdom, their first attack against German efforts to build an invasion force. Such raids will peak in September and end in October after the threat of a German invasion abates.[48]
    • During the British attack on the French fleet at Mers-el-Kébir, Algeria, Fairey Swordfish aircraft from the aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal mine the harbor and unsuccessfully attack the French battlecruiser Strasbourg as she flees to Toulon. French Curtiss Hawk 75 fighters and Blackburn Skua fighters from Ark Royal engage in a dogfight, during which the French shoot down one Skua.
  • July 4 – In retaliation for the British attack at Mers-el-Kébir, French Air Force bombers raid Gibraltar, causing little damage.
  • July 5 – Shore-based Swordfish of the Fleet Air Arm '​s No. 813 Squadron make a torpedo strike against Italian ships at Tobruk, sinking a transport and a destroyer, blowing the bow off another destroyer, and damaging an ocean liner.[49]
  • July 6 – Twelve Swordfish aircraft from Ark Royal make a torpedo strike against Mers-el-Kébir, sinking a French patrol boat and badly damaging the beached battlecruiser Dunkerque. It is the most successful aerial torpedo attack against a capital ship in history at the time.[50]
  • July 8 – Aircraft from the British aircraft carrier HMS Hermes torpedo the French battleship Richelieu at Dakar, Senegal, damaging her. Richelieu is not seaworthy again for a year.[51]
  • July 8–9 (overnight) – 64 British bombers strike airfields in the Netherlands and ports in north Germany and lay sea mines. Germany '​s first specialized night fighter unit, Nachtjagdgeschwader 1, scores its first victory, as Oberfeldwebel Hermann Förster shoots down a Whitley off Heligoland.[52]
  • July 8–13 – Italian high-level bombers subject ships of the British Mediterranean Fleet to repeated heavy attacks while the fleet is at sea in the Mediterranean. They score only one hit, on the light cruiser HMS Gloucester.[53]
  • July 9
    • The indecisive Battle of Calabria is the first major fleet action of World War II between the British and Italian navies. Swordfish from the British aircraft carrier HMS Eagle conduct two torpedo strikes but score no hits.[54]
    • 40 Italian Savoia-Marchetti SM.79 bombers attack the British aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal and other ships of Force H off Sardinia. They drop over 100 bombs but score no hits, and Blackburn Skuas from Ark Royal shoot down two SM.79s and damage two others.[51]
  • July 10 – The Battle of Britain commences with the first German attacks on British convoys in the English Channel.
  • July 14 – In retaliation for the British attacks at Mers-el-Kébir and Dakar, French bombers again attack Gibraltar, but most of their bombs fall into the sea.
  • July 20 – Fleet Air Arm Swordfish of No. 813 Squadron conduct another torpedo strike against Tobruk, sinking two Italian destroyers.[49]
  • July 25–26 (overnight) – 166 British bombers strike German airfields in the Netherlands and targets in the Ruhr.[48]
  • Late July – In the first use of airborne radar for interception of an enemy aircraft, a Flying Officer Ashfield flying a British Bristol Blenheim IF night fighter destroys a German Dornier Do 17 bomber. A second such kill will not be achieved until November – again by Ashfield.[1][55]

August[edit]

September[edit]

October[edit]

November[edit]

December[edit]

First flights[edit]

January[edit]

February[edit]

March[edit]

April[edit]

May[edit]

August[edit]

September[edit]

October[edit]

November[edit]

December[edit]

Entered service[edit]

February[edit]

March[edit]

April[edit]

May[edit]

June[edit]

July[edit]

September[edit]

October[edit]

November[edit]

Retirements[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Crosby, Francis, The Complete Guide to Fighters & Bombers of the World: An Illustrated History of the World '​s Greatest Military Aircraft, From the Pioneering Days of Air Fighting in World War I Through the Jet Fighters and Stealth Bombers of the Present Day, London: Anness Publishing Ltd., 2006, ISBN 978-1-84476-917-9, p. 30.
  2. ^ Angelucci, Enzo, The American Fighter: The Definitive Guide to American Fighter Aircraft From 1917 to the Present, New York: Orion Books, 1987, p. 95.
  3. ^ Condon, Richard W., The Winter War: Russia Against Finland, New York: Ballantine Books Inc., 1972, pp. 105, 107.
  4. ^ May, Ernest R., Strange Victory: Hitler '​s Conquest of France, New York: Hill and Wang, 2000, ISBN 0-8090-8906-8, p. 246.
  5. ^ a b c Hardesty, Von, Red Phoenix: The Rise of Soviet Air Power 1941-1945, Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1982, ISBN 978-0-87474-510-8, p. 52.
  6. ^ May, Ernest R., Strange Victory: Hitler '​s Conquest of France, New York: Hill and Wang, 2000, ISBN 0-8090-8906-8, pp. 225, 236, 315-316, 317-319.
  7. ^ Condon, Richard W., The Winter War: Russia Against Finland, New York: Ballantine Books Inc., 1972, p. 109.
  8. ^ Condon, Richard W., The Winter War: Russia Against Finland, New York: Ballantine Books Inc., 1972, p. 146.
  9. ^ Morison, Samuel Eliot, History of U.S. Naval Operations in World War II, Volume IV: Coral Sea, Midway, and Submarine Actions, May 1942-August 1942, Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1988, p. 72.
  10. ^ Condon, Richard W., The Winter War: Russia Against Finland, New York: Ballantine Books Inc., 1972, p. 145.
  11. ^ Condon, Richard W., The Winter War: Russia Against Finland, New York: Ballantine Books Inc., 1972, pp. 147-148.
  12. ^ Condon, Richard W., The Winter War: Russia Against Finland, New York: Ballantine Books Inc., 1972, pp. 30, 50.
  13. ^ Condon, Richard W., The Winter War: Russia Against Finland, New York: Ballantine Books Inc., 1972, pp. 7, 50, 55.
  14. ^ Hastings, Max, Bomber Command: Churchill '​s Epic Campaign - The Inside Story of the RAF '​s Valiant Attempt to End the War, New York: Simon & Schuster Inc., 1987, ISBN 0-671-68070-6, p. 80.
  15. ^ a b c d e f Royal Air Force Bomber Command 60th Anniversary: Campaign Diary 1940
  16. ^ a b Aviation Hawaii: 1940-1949 Chronology of Aviation in Hawaii
  17. ^ Sturtivant, Ray, British Naval Aviation: The Fleet Air Arm, 1917-1990, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1990, ISBN 0-87021-026-2, p. 39.
  18. ^ a b Sturtivant, Ray, British Naval Aviation: The Fleet Air Arm, 1917-1990, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1990, ISBN 0-87021-026-2, p. 40.
  19. ^ Thetford, Owen, British Naval Aircraft Since 1912, Sixth Edition, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1991, ISBN 1-55750-076-2, p. 140.
  20. ^ Sturtivant, Ray, British Naval Aviation: The Fleet Air Arm, 1917-1990, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1990, ISBN 0-87021-026-2, pp. 40-41.
  21. ^ Thetford, Owen, British Naval Aircraft Since 1912, Sixth Edition, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1991, ISBN 1-55750-076-2, p. 141.
  22. ^ a b c d Sturtivant, Ray, British Naval Aviation: The Fleet Air Arm, 1917-1990, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1990, ISBN 0-87021-026-2, p. 41.
  23. ^ Hinchcliffe, Peter, The Other Battle: Luftwaffe Night Aces Versus Bomber Command, Edison, New Jersey: Castle Books, 2001, ISBN 978-0-7858-1418-4, p. 31.
  24. ^ Peattie, Mark R., Sunburst: The Rise of Japanese Naval Air Power 1909-1941, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 2001, ISBN 978-1-55750-432-6, pp. 118, 120.
  25. ^ hazegray.org Graf Zeppelin
  26. ^ Lynch, Adam, "Hometown Heroine," Aviation History, March 2012, p. 57.
  27. ^ Royal Air Force Bomber Command 60th Anniversary: Campaign Diary: The Battle of France May-June 1940
  28. ^ May, Ernest R., Strange Victory: Hitler's Conquest of France, New York: Hill and Wang, 2000, ISBN 0-8090-8906-8, pp. 384-385.
  29. ^ Devlin, Gerald M. (1985). Silent Wings. London: W. H. Allen. ISBN 0-491-03134-3. 
  30. ^ a b Hinchcliffe, Peter, The Other Battle: Luftwaffe Night Aces Versus Bomber Command, Edison, New Jersey: Castle Books, 2001, ISBN 978-0-7858-1418-4, p. 37.
  31. ^ a b Hinchcliffe, Peter, The Other Battle: Luftwaffe Night Aces Versus Bomber Command, Edison, New Jersey: Castle Books, 2001, ISBN 978-0-7858-1418-4, pp. 36-37.
  32. ^ a b c Macintyre, Donald, The Naval War Against Hitler, New York: Charles Scribner '​s Sons, 1971, no ISBN number, pp. 50-51.
  33. ^ Colledge, J, j., Ships of the Royal Navy: The Complete Record of All Fighting Ships of the Royal Navy From the Fifteenth Century to the Present, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1987, ISBN 0-87021-652-X, p. 363.
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  35. ^ a b c d e f Sturtivant, Ray, British Naval Aviation: The Fleet Air Arm, 1917-1990, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1990, ISBN 0-87021-026-2, p. 42.
  36. ^ Macintyre, Donald, The Naval War Against Hitler, New York: Charles Scribner '​s Sons, 1971, no ISBN number, p. 511.
  37. ^ Macintyre, Donald, The Naval War Against Hitler, New York: Charles Scribner '​s Sons, 1971, no ISBN number, p. 51.
  38. ^ Colledge, J, j., Ships of the Royal Navy: The Complete Record of All Fighting Ships of the Royal Navy From the Fifteenth Century to the Present, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1987, ISBN 0-87021-652-X, p. 378.
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  40. ^ Macintyre, Donald, The Naval War Against Hitler, New York: Charles Scribner '​s Sons, 1971, no ISBN number, pp. 52-53.
  41. ^ Hinchcliffe, Peter, The Other Battle: Luftwaffe Night Aces Versus Bomber Command, Edison, New Jersey: Castle Books, 2001, ISBN 978-0-7858-1418-4, pp. 38-39.
  42. ^ Macintyre, Donald, The Naval War Against Hitler, New York: Charles Scribner '​s Sons, 1971, no ISBN number, p. 50.
  43. ^ Macintyre, Donald, The Naval War Against Hitler, New York: Charles Scribner '​s Sons, 1971, no ISBN number, p. 149.
  44. ^ a b Donald, David, ed., The Complete Encyclopedia of World Aircraft, New York: Barnes & Noble Books, 1997, ISBN 0-7607-0592-5, p. 184.
  45. ^ Sturtivant, Ray, British Naval Aviation: The Fleet Air Arm, 1917-1990, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1990, ISBN 0-87021-026-2, p. 45.
  46. ^ a b Sturtivant, Ray, British Naval Aviation: The Fleet Air Arm, 1917-1990, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1990, ISBN 0-87021-026-2, p. 44.
  47. ^ Hinchcliffe, Peter, The Other Battle: Luftwaffe Night Aces Versus Bomber Command, Edison, New Jersey: Castle Books, 2001, ISBN 978-0-7858-1418-4, p. 39.
  48. ^ a b Hinchcliffe, Peter, The Other Battle: Luftwaffe Night Aces Versus Bomber Command, Edison, New Jersey: Castle Books, 2001, ISBN 978-0-7858-1418-4, p. 43.
  49. ^ a b c Macintyre, Donald, The Naval War Against Hitler, New York: Charles Scribner '​s Sons, 1971, no ISBN number, p. 150.
  50. ^ a b Thetford, Owen, British Naval Aircraft Since 1912, Sixth Edition, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1991, ISBN 1-55750-076-2, p. 144.
  51. ^ a b Sturtivant, Ray, British Naval Aviation: The Fleet Air Arm, 1917-1990, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1990, ISBN 0-87021-026-2, p. 51.
  52. ^ Hinchcliffe, Peter, The Other Battle: Luftwaffe Night Aces Versus Bomber Command, Edison, New Jersey: Castle Books, 2001, ISBN 978-0-7858-1418-4, p. 44.
  53. ^ Macintyre, Donald, The Naval War Against Hitler, New York: Charles Scribner '​s Sons, 1971, no ISBN number, pp. 150-151.
  54. ^ Macintyre, Donald, The Naval War Against Hitler, New York: Charles Scribner '​s Sons, 1971, no ISBN number, p. 151.
  55. ^ Hinchcliffe, Peter, The Other Battle: Luftwaffe Night Aces Versus Bomber Command, Edison, New Jersey: Castle Books, 2001, ISBN 978-0-7858-1418-4, p. 66.
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  57. ^ Macintyre, Donald, The Naval War Against Hitler, New York: Charles Scribner '​s Sons, 1971, no ISBN number, p. 153.
  58. ^ Operation Hurry, 1-4 August 1940
  59. ^ a b Crosby, Francis, The Complete Guide to Fighters & Bombers of the World: An Illustrated History of the World '​s Greatest Military Aircraft, From the Pioneering Days of Air Fighting in World War I Through the Jet Fighters and Stealth Bombers of the Present Day, London: Anness Publishing Ltd., 2006, ISBN 978-1-84476-917-9, p. 29.
  60. ^ Peattie, Mark R., Sunburst: The Rise of Japanese Naval Air Power 1909-1941, Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 2001, ISBN 978-1-55750-432-6, p. 119.
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  69. ^ Sweetman, John, Schweinfurt: Disaster in the Skies, New York: Ballantine Books, Inc., 1971, p. 23.
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