Fédération Aéronautique Internationale

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Fédération Aéronautique Internationale
Abbreviation FAI
Formation 1905
Type Sports organisation
Location Lausanne, Switzerland
President Sweden Dr. John Grubbström[1]
Secretary General -
Website www.fai.org

The Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, FAI - The World Air Sports Federation, is the world governing body for air sports, aeronautics and astronautics world records. Its head office is in Lausanne, Switzerland.[2] This includes man-carrying aerospace vehicles from balloons to spacecraft, and unmanned aerial vehicles (such as model aircraft and UAVs). It was founded on 14 October 1905.


The FAI was founded at a conference held in Paris 12–14 October 1905, which was organised following a resolution passed by the Olympic Congress held in Brussels on 10 June 1905 calling for the creation of an Association "to regulate the sport of flying, ... the various aviation meetings and advance the science and sport of Aeronautics."[3] The conference was attended by representatives from 8 countries: Belgium (Aero Club Royal de Belgique, founded 1901), France (Aéro-Club de France, 1898), Germany (Deutscher Aero Club e.V.), Great Britain (Royal Aero Club, 1901), Italy (Aero Club d'Italia, 1904), Spain (Real Aero Club de España, 1905), Switzerland (Aero-Club der Schweiz, 1900) and the United States (Aero Club of America, 1905).


The FAI is the international governing body for the following activities:

The FAI establishes the standards for records in the activities. Where these are air sports, the FAI also oversees international competitions at world and continental levels, and also organizes the World Air Games and FAI World Grand Prix.


1971 USSR commemorative stamp depicting Yuri A. Gagarin Gold Medal established by FAI

Among the FAI's responsibilities are the verification of record-breaking flights. For a flight to be registered as a "World Record," it has to comply with the FAI's strict rules, which include a proviso that the record must exceed the previous record by a certain percentage. Since the late 1930s, military aircraft have dominated some classes of record for powered aircraft such as speed, distance, payload, and height, though other classes are regularly claimed by civilians.

Some records are claimed by countries as their own, even though their achievements fail to meet FAI standards. These claims are not typically granted the status of official records. For example, Yuri Gagarin earned recognition for the first manned spaceflight, despite failing to meet FAI requirements. The FAI initially did not recognize the achievement because he did not land in his Vostok spacecraft (he ejected from it), but later it recognized that Gagarin was the first human to fly into space. The FAI then established "The Yuri A. Gagarin Gold Medal", which has been awarded since 1968.[16]


The following types of craft have records:

Some of the records[edit]

Date Measurement Person Aircraft Type
Class A: Free balloons
31 March 1999 40,814 km.[17] Bertrand Piccard and
Brian Jones
Breitling Orbiter Distance
4 May 1961 34,668 meters Malcolm Ross and Victor Prather
Winzen Absolute altitude
Class C: Aeroplanes
11 February 2006 41,467.53 km Steve Fossett Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer Flight distance record (without refueling)
28 July 1976 3,529.56 km/h Eldon W. Joersz Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird Flight airspeed record
31 August 1977 37,650 m Alexandr Fedotov MiG E-266M Flight altitude record
22 October 1938 17,083 m Mario Pezzi Caproni Ca.161 Flight altitude record (piston engine without payload)
Class CS: Solar-Powered Aeroplanes
7 July 2010 9,235 m
26 h 10 m 19 s
André Borschberg Solar Impulse (Prototype) Solar powered Duration and Flight altitude record[18]
25 May 2012 1116 km André Borschberg Solar Impulse (Prototype) Solar powered Distance
Class D: Gliders & Motorgliders
29 August 2006 15,460 m Steve Fossett and
Einar Enevoldson
Glaser-Dirks DG-505M (modified) Gliding Altitude[19]
21 January 2003 3,008.8 km Klaus Ohlmann and
Karl Rabeder
Schempp-Hirth Nimbus-4 Gliding Distance
Class E-1: Helicopters
11 August 1986 400.87 km/h John Trevor Egginton Westland Lynx G-LYNX (modified) Speed over a straight 15/25 km course[20]
Class G-2: Parachuting Performance Records
14 October 2012 1357,6 km/h[21] Felix Baumgartner Red Bull Stratos Vertical speed
Class I-C: Manpowered aeroplane
23 April 1988 115.11 km
3h 54mn 59s
Kanellos Kanellopoulos (GR) MIT Daedalus 88 Human powered Distance and Duration
Class O: Hang Gliding & Paragliding
12 December 2008 501.1 km Nevil Hullett Mac Para Magus Straight distance with a paraglider
Class R: Microlights
14 February 2002 187 km/h Julian Harris and
Bob Sharp
Jabiru Aircraft UL 3 axis flight airspeed record.[22]
17 August 2011 130.3 km Edina Sz. KOLESZÁR Dudek Nucleon 23 Distance in a closed circuit with limited fuel


The FAI has awarded the Paul Tissandier Diploma since 1952 to those who have served the cause of aviation in general and sporting aviation in particular.[23] The FAI also makes awards for each of the following air sports.

  • Awards for Ballooning:
  • Awards for General Aviation:
  • Awards for Gliding:
  • Awards for Rotorcraft:
    • The FAI Gold Rotorcraft Medal
  • Awards for Parachuting:
    • The FAI Gold Parachuting Medal
    • The Leonardo da Vinci Parachuting Diploma
    • The Faust Vrancic Medal
  • Awards for Aeromodelling:
    • The FAI Aeromodelling Gold Medal
    • The Andrei Tupolev Aeromodelling Medal
    • The Alphonse Penaud Aeromodelling Diploma
    • The Antonov Aeromodelling Diploma
    • The Andrei Tupolev Aeromodelling Diploma
    • The Frank Ehling Diploma
  • Awards for Aerobatics:
    • The Leon Biancotto Aerobatics Diploma
  • Awards for Astronautics:
    • The Yuri A. Gagarin Gold Medal
    • The V.M. Komarov Diploma
    • The Korolev Diploma
    • The Odyssey Diploma
  • Awards for Hang Gliding:
    • The Pepe Lopes Medal
    • The FAI Hang Gliding Diploma
  • Awards for Microlight Aviation:
  • Awards for Aviation and Space Education:
    • The Nile Gold Medal
  • Awards for Amateur-Built Aircraft:

FAI Young Artists Contest[edit]

The FAI Young Artists Contest[25] is an international painting competition for youngsters between the ages of 6 and 17. Each FAI Member Country organises the contest in their country, and the national winners are submitted to the International Jury each year.


Active members[edit]

Country Member name
 Albania Federata Shqiptare E Aeronautikes
 Argentina Confederacion Argentina De Entidades Aerodeportivas
 Australia Australian Sport Aviation Confederation
 Austria Österreichischer Aero Club
 Azerbaijan Azarbaycan Hava Va Ekstremal Idman Növlaci Federasiyasi
 Belarus Belarusian Federation Of Air Sports
 Belgium Royal Belgian Aero Club
 Bosnia and Herzegovina Vazduhoplovni Savez Bosne I Hercegovine
 Brazil Comissão de Aerodesporto Brasileira
 Bulgaria Bulgarski Natsionalen Aeroklub
 Canada Aero Club of Canada
 Chile Federacion Aerea De Chile
 China Aero Sports Federation Of China
 Chinese Taipei Chinese Taipei Aerosports Federation
 Colombia Federacion Colombiana De Deportes Aereos "Federaeros"
 Croatia Hrvatski Zrakoplovni Savez
 Cuba Aviation Club Of Cuba
 Cyprus Kypriaki Aerathlitiki Omospondia
 Czech Republic Aeroklub Ceské Republiky
 Denmark Kongelig Dansk Aeroklub
 Ecuador Club De Aeromodelismo Quito
 Egypt Aero Club Of Egypt
 Estonia Eesti Lennuspordi Föderatsioon
 Finland Suomen Ilmailuliitto Ry
 Macedonia Vozduhoplovna Federacija Na Makedonija
 France Aero Club de France
 Germany Deutscher Aero Club e.V.
 Greece Elliniki Aerathlitiki Omospondia
 Guatemala Asociacion Guatemalteca De Deportes Aereos
 Hong Kong Hong Kong Aviation Club Ltd
 Hungary Magyar Repülö Szövetség
 Iceland Flugmálafélag Íslands
 India Aero Club Of India
 Indonesia Federasi Aero Sport Indonesia
 Iran Kanoone Havanavardiye Iran
 Ireland National Aero Club of Ireland
 Israel Aero Club Of Israel
 Italy Aero Club D'Italia
 Japan Nippon Koku Kyokai
 Jordan Royal Aerosports Club Of Jordan
 Kazakhstan Association Of Light Aviation Of The Republic Of Kazakhstan
 South Korea Daehanmingook Hang Gong Hwe
 North Korea Central Aeronautic Association OF D.P.R. Korea
 Kuwait Kuwait Science Club
 Latvia Latvijas Aeroklubs
 Libya Libyan Airsports Federation
 Lithuania Lietuvos Aeroklubas
 Luxembourg Federation Aeronautique Luxembourgeoise
 Malaysia Persekutuan Sukan Udara Malaysia
 Mexico Federacion Mexicana De Aeronautica, A.C.
 Moldova Federatia De Parapantism Din Republica Moldova
 Monaco Aero Club De Monaco
 Mongolia Mongolian Air Sports Federation
 Montenegro Vazduhoplovni Savez Crne Gore
 Morocco Federation Royale Marocaine De L'Aviation Legere Et Sportive
 Mozambique Aeroclube De Mocambique
   Nepal Nepal Airsports Association
 Netherlands Koninklijke Nederlandse Vereniging Voor Luchtvaart
 New Zealand Royal New Zealand Aero Club Inc.
 Norway Norges Luftsportforbund
 Pakistan All Pakistan Aero Modelling & Ultralight Asoociation
 Peru Federacion Peruana Aerodeportiva
 Philippines 3D Air Sports And Hobbies Asoociation, Incorporated
 Poland Aeroklub Polski
 Portugal Aero Club De Portugal
 Qatar Qatar Air Sports Committee
 Romania Federatia Aeronautica Romana
 Russia Federatsia Avtsionnogo Sporta Rossii
 San Marino Federazione Aeronautica Sammarinese
 Saudi Arabia Saudi Aviation Club
 Serbia Vazduhoplovni Savez Srbije
 Singapore Aeromodelling Federation Of Singapore
 Slovakia Slovensky Narodny Aeroklub Generala M.R. Stefanika
 Slovenia Letalska Zveza Slovenija
 South Africa Aero Club of South Africa
 Spain Real FederacIón Aeroáutica Española
 Sweden Svenska Flygsportförbundet
  Switzerland Aero Club Der Schweiz
 Thailand Royal Aeronautics Sports Association Of Thailand
 Turkey Türk Hava Kurumu
 Ukraine Federation Of Aeronautical Sports Of Ukraine
 United Arab Emirates Emirates Aviation Association
 United Kingdom Royal Aero Club of the United Kingdom
 United States National Aeronautic Association Of The USA
 Uzbekistan Texnik Va Amaliy Sport Turlari Markazi
 Venezuela Asociacion Venezolana De Los Deportes Aeronauticos (A.V.D.A.)

Associate Members[edit]

Country Member Name
 Bahrain Royal Bahrain Parachuting Committee
 Egypt Egyptian Sport Parachuting And Aeronautics Federation
 Liechtenstein Modellfluggruppe Liechtenstein
 Oman Oman National Free Fall Team
 Panama Asociacion De Paracaidismo Deportivo De Panama
 Portugal Federaçâo Portuguesa De Aeromodelismo
 Qatar Qatar Aeromodelling Racing Team
 Romania Federatia Romana De Modelism
 Saint Kitts and Nevis St Kitts And Nevis National Parachute Associating
 Tunisia Association Tunisienne Des Sports Aeriens
 Uruguay Centro Uruguayo De Planeadores

Temporary members[edit]

Country Member name
 Armenia National Committee Of Aeromodelling And Spacemodelling Sports
 El Salvador Federacion Salvadoreña De Paracaidismo Y Aerodeportes
 Iraq Al- Sokoor Aero Club
 Laos Lao Airsports Club
 Paraguay Asociacion Paraguaya Paracaidismo Deportivo
 Syria Syrian Parachute Federation
 Vietnam Hanoi Air Sports Association

Suspended members[edit]

Country Member Name
 Lebanon Aero Club Du Liban
 Mali Federation Malienne De Sports Air
 Trinidad and Tobago Savannah Aero Concepts

See also[edit]


External links[edit]