Just over 100 years
since the first sustained and controlled heavier-than-air powered
flight, flying machines are now commonplace, used for transport,
freight, warfare, rescue and pleasure just for starters. Aerospace
technology is still the realm of both big business and entrepreneurs –
Moscow recently hosted an airshow in which contracts totaling $10
billion were signed, and Virgin Galactic is still working toward a
private spaceliner business. Collected here are recent photographs of
various flying machines in action or on display around the world. (40 photos total)

EC120 Colibri helicopters from the Spanish Air Force’s aerobatic team
Patrulla Aspa perform during an aerial exhibition over San Lorenzo
beach in Gijon, northern Spain July 26, 2009. (REUTERS/Eloy Alonso)

U.S. KC-135 Stratotanker refuels a F15 fighter jet in the air above the
Forward Operating Base Shank in Logar Province, Afghanistan on July 30,
2009. (REUTERS/Shamil Zhumatov) 

watch a fire fighting helicopter drop water on a burning forest at
Agios Stephanos, a suburb north of Athens, Sunday, Aug. 23, 2009. (AP
Photo/Nikolas Giakoumidis)

standing near a Russian Tu-144 watch fighter jets perfoming tricks
overhead during the MAKS 2009 international aerospace show outside
Moscow in Zhukovsky on August 20, 2009. (DMITRY KOSTYUKOV/AFP/Getty

The new 90 foot high tech catamaran belonging to America’s Cup defender
Alinghi is airlifted on August 7, 2009 near Aosta, Italy, flying from
Switzerland over the Alps to the Mediterranean Sea. (FABRICE
COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images) #

Virgin Galactic WhiteKnight2 mothership "Eve" makes its first public
debut at the world’s largest air show at Oshkosh, Wisconsin July 27,
2009. WhiteKnight2 is the largest composite aircraft ever built and
will be the aircraft that ferries the first commercial SpaceShip2 aloft
for passenger flight to space. (REUTERS/Mark Greenberg/Virgin Galactic) 

from rotoer tips are visible in the air as Marine One, with President
Barack Obama on board, prepares to land on the South Lawn at the White
House in Washington, DC, on July 29, 2009. (JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty

Russian MIG-29 performs during the MAKS 2009 international aerospace
show outside Moscow on August 22, 2009. (DMITRY KOSTYUKOV/AFP/Getty

Wu Zhongyuan, 22, sits in his self-made helicopter in Jiuxian county,
Henan province, China on August 1, 2009. The local government later
halted Wu’s plan to fly the helicopter out of safety concerns. The
aircraft, powered by a 150cc engine, took Wu two months to build and
cost more than 10,000 yuan ($1,460), China Daily reported.
(REUTERS/China Daily) 

helicopter with tourists on board flies in front of Angel Falls, the
world’s highest waterfall, also known as "Salto Angel" at Canaima
National Park, in southeastern Venezuela on August 23, 2009.
(REUTERS/Jorge Silva) 

Macedonian army Mi-24 helicopter fires rockets during a military
exercise at Krivolak’s training centre, 100 km (60 miles) from Skopje,
Macedonia on July 30, 2009. (REUTERS/Ognen Teofilovski) 

helicopter flies over a controlled burn behind an evacuated home in an
attempt to reduce the amount of fuel for a wildfire burning on Mount
McLean in Lillooet, British Columbia, Canada on Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2009.
(AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Darryl Dyck) 

MiG-35 jet performs a low pass during the MAKS-2009 international air
show in Zhukovsky, Russia on August 21, 2009. (REUTERS/Sergei

Korean special warfare command soldiers parachute down from a
helicopter during a sea infiltration drill in Taean, south of Seoul,
August 5, 2009. (REUTERS/Lee Jin-man) 

aerobatics team "Russkie vityazi" (Russian Knights) in Su-27 fighter
jets fly away from just-launched defensive flares during the MAKS 2009
international aerospace show outside Moscow on August 23, 2009. (DMITRY
KOSTYUKOV/AFP/Getty Images) 

pilot Peter Besenyei flies over the Hungarian Parliament Building
during a practice session for the fourth round of the 2009 Red Bull Air
Race World Championship in Budapest on August 17, 2009. (REUTERS/Laszlo

his way to place second, British Paul Bonhomme flies over the river
Danube in front of the Parliament building during the final of the 2009
Red Bull Air Race World Championship in Budapest on August 20, 2009.

watch as flying C-101 Aviojets from the Spanish Air Force aerobatic
group Patrulla Aguila fly over San Lorenzo beach in Gijon, northern
Spain, during an aerial exhibition on July 26, 2009. (REUTERS/Eloy

U.S. Chinook helicopter carries an M777A2 howitzer to a base in the
outskirts of Spin Boldak, about 100 kilometers (63 miles) southeast of
Kabul, Afghanistan on Friday, July 31, 2009. (AP Photo/Emilio

this Wednesday Aug. 19, 2009 photo, Spc. Paul Pickett, 22, of Minden
La., right, of the U.S. Army’s Apache Company, 2nd Battalion 87th
Infantry Regiment, covers an injured U.S. soldier as a helicopter lands
to evacuate the wounded after their armored vehicle hit an improvised
explosive device in the Tangi Valley of Afghanistan’s Wardak Province.
(AP Photo/David Goldman)

Russian Mig-29 fighter jet flies in front of the sun during the MAKS
air show outside Moscow on August 22, 2009. (DMITRY KOSTYUKOV/AFP/Getty

view of the wreckage of an Ilyushin Il-62 passenger jet in Mashhad,
Iran on July 24, 2009. The jet overshot the runway on landing, with 160
people on board, smashing through a perimiter fence, killing at least
17 and injuring 30 others. (REUTERS/ IRNA Stringer) 

A British Airways passenger jet flies past the moon over Zurich in this June 30, 2009 photo. (REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann) 

member of the ground crew works in the cockpit of a U.S. Air Force F-16
fighter jet at Bagram air base, north of Kabul, Afghanistan on August
10, 2009. (REUTERS/Tim Wimborne) 

Italian Air Force aerobatic team "Frecce Tricolori" performs during
their training flight at the Moscow International Air Show in Zhukovsky
outside Moscow, August 19, 2009. (REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin) 

firefighting helicopter flies over the village of Marathon, Greece on
August 22, 2009. A raging forest fire threatened homes near Athens,
causing authorities to declare a state of emergency and ordering
residents to evacuate, as they worked to bring the blaze under control.

aerobatics team Patrouille de France performs during the MAKS 2009
international aerospace show in Zhukovsky, Russia on August 22, 2009.

Canadian Navy CH-124 Sea King helicopter from the frigate HMCS Toronto
flies by the terrain of Baffin Island along the shores of Frobisher Bay
in the Canadian Arctic August 19, 2009. (REUTERS/Andy Clark) 

aerobatics team Russian Falcons in Su-27 fighter jets perform at the
Moscow International Air Show on August 23, 2009. (DMITRY
KOSTYUKOV/AFP/Getty Images) 

clouds form over the wings of a Sukhoi Su-35 jet as it peforms a tight
turn during the Moscow International Air Show on Friday, Aug. 21, 2009.
(AP Photo/Sergey Ponomarev) 

sunbathe on the beach while firefighting planes fill up with water in a
resort of Nea Makri in eastern Athens, Greece on August 24, 2009.

passenger plane carrying Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi
home to Libya, takes off from Glasgow airport on August 20, 2009 in
Glasgow, Scotland. Abdelbaset ali al-Megrahi had been serving a life
sentence for the 1988 Pan-AM flight 103 Lockerbie bombing, which killed
270 people, and had been released on compassionate grounds due to his
health – he is terminally ill with prostate cancer. (Jeff J
Mitchell/Getty Images) 

drone equipped with a thermic camera for sea pollution surveillance
overflies a beach in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat and Villefranche harbour,
southern France on July 30, 2009. (STEPHANE DANNA/AFP/Getty Images) 

Air Force’s Gripens fly over Budapest’s Heroes Square during Hungary’s
National Day on August 20, 2009. (REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh) 

military Patrouille de France Alphajet airplanes perform during the
MAKS-2009 International air show in Zhukovsky, outside Moscow, August
20, 2009. (REUTERS/Alexander Natruskin) 

badly damaged Su-27 jet from the Russian air force elite aerobatic team
Russkiye Vityazi (Russian Knights), dives toward the ground just
seconds after the aircraft collided with a two-seat Su-27 (not seen)
near Zhukovsky airfield on Aug. 16, 2009. The two Russian air force
jets collided Sunday, killing one pilot and sending one fighter
crashing into nearby vacation homes, a military official said. One
pilot and a civilian on the ground were killed. (AP Photo/Dmitry

fire-fighting airplane drops water over a fire in Varnava village,
northeast of Athens, Greece on August 22, 2009. (REUTERS/Yiorgos

B-17 Flying Fortress, from the Yankee Air Museum performs a flyover
prior to the NASCAR Nationwide Series at Michigan International
Speedway on August 15, 2009 in Brooklyn, Michigan. (Jerry
Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR) 

army helicopter flies over a bombarded area in Cano Cabra during a
media trip organised by the Colombian military on July 25, 2009.
Colombian forces killed at least 18 leftist guerrillas of the 27th
Front of the FARC on Saturday in an aerial bombardment in the southern
jungle province of Meta, the country’s military command said.
(REUTERS/Fredy Builes) 

hot-air balloon flies over the morning mist near Immenstadt in Allgaeu,
southern Germany, on August 24, 2009. (SEBASTIAN WIDMANN/AFP/Getty


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