Saturn Airways

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Saturn Airways
IATA ICAO Callsign
(none) KS SATURN
Founded1948 (as All American Airways)
Ceased operations1976
HeadquartersOakland, California, United States

Saturn Airways (ICAO designator: KS, and Callsign: Saturn) was a US "supplemental carrier", i.e. a charter airline. It operated from 1948 until 1976. Its headquarters were located on the grounds of Oakland International Airport, Oakland, California.[1]


The airline was initially known as All American Airways based at Oakland Airport and used Curtiss C-46 Commando aircraft. In 1959 it became known as Saturn Airways and began operating Douglas DC-6C planes. Larger Douglas DC-7C aircraft were purchased in 1963 from BOAC and were operated on transatlantic passenger charter flights. In 1965 Saturn acquired AAXICO Airlines.

Saturn Airways Douglas DC-8-61CF at Chicago O'Hare Airport in 1971 when operating a passenger charter

In December 1967 and January 1968, respectively, Saturn took delivery of two Douglas DC-8 Super 61CF jets. This allowed it to operate transcontinental cargo and charter flights, some of which included military flights to South Vietnam. Between 1968 and 1974 it had two DC-8 Series 50 planes in its inventory and added a third Super 61CF in 1972. After absorbing the assets of defunct Universal Airlines in May 1972, it added nine Lockheed L-188 Electra aircraft to its fleet. Saturn also operated nineteen Lockheed Hercules aircraft.

Saturn was finally absorbed by Trans International Airlines in December 1976, making Trans International the largest air cargo operation at the time.

The Triple Crown winning racehorse, Secretariat, was flown to Ontario, Canada on a Saturn Airways charter to run in his last race.


Saturn Airways Lockheed L-100 Hercules in the 1970s

Accidents and incidents[edit]

May 23, 1974
  • Time: 16:55
  • Location: Springfield, Illinois
  • Operator: Saturn Airways
  • Route: Alameda, California to Indianapolis, Indiana
  • AC Type: Lockheed L-100-30 Hercules
  • Registration: N14ST
  • Aboard: 3 (passengers: 1 crew: 2)
  • Fatalities: 3 (passengers: 1 crew: 2)
  • Ground: 0

Summary: While en route the left wing separated from the aircraft. The plane crashed out of control. The undiscovered, preexisting fatigue cracks, which reduced the strength of the left wing to the degree that it failed as a result of positive aerodynamic loads created by moderate turbulence.[2]

January 31, 1967
  • Time: 03:20
  • Type: Douglas DC-6A
  • Operator: Saturn Airways
  • Registration: N640NA
  • C/N / msn: 45475/973
  • Crew: Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
  • Passengers: Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
  • Total: Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
  • Airplane damage: Written off
  • Location: San Antonio International Airport, Texas (SAT) (United States) show on map
  • Phase: Approach
  • Nature: Cargo
  • Departure airport: ?
  • Destination airport: San Antonio-Kelly AFB, Texas (SKF/KSKF), United States

Narrative: The Saturn DC-6 was operating on a cargo flight to Kelly AFB. The crew decided to divert to civilian international airport at San Antonio and commenced the approach. The airplane descended 1100 feet below the glide slope, flew through trees and collided with a cliff.

Probable cause: "Undetermined".[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "World Airline Directory." Flight International. March 20, 1975. 500.
  2. ^ "Accident profile". Retrieved 16 December 2023.
  3. ^ "ASN Aircraft accident Douglas DC-6A N640NA San Antonio International Airport, TX (SAT)". Retrieved 16 December 2023.

External links[edit]