Traveling by a Private Jet

February 26, 2009

Traveling by private jet is convenient, and seems quite glamorous to many people. Private jet charter is a privilege and a luxury few people ever know or experience. Given these perceptions, you may be surprised to know that private jets and charter flight had very humble and even uncertain beginnings.

You may also be surprised to learn that jet-powered aircraft actually predate charter flight itself. The first jet-propelled aircraft was built nearly one hundred years ago by a Romanian inventor, Henri Coanda. An odd-looking aircraft, it was a type of thermojet that used a compressor instead of a propeller, which exhausted hot gases along the side of the machine at great velocity that actually provided a reactive force, pushing the plane forward. During its first and only flight in December of 1910, Coanda noticed that the burning gases had a tendency to hug the sides of the aircraft known to this day as the Coanda Effect,which is why both commercial and private jet engines are mounted either at the rear of the plane, or far out on the wings.

Similar engines were developed during the 1930s and 40s. The first practical, true turbojet the Heinkel He 178 actually flew in 1939. Due to the conservatism of German Air Force authorities however and political maneuvering within the German military, this jet fighter was never to see service. The first operational jet aircraft to see action was the Messerschmitt Me 262, which first flew in combat in April, 1944, little over a year before Germany’s defeat. After World War II, this technology was quickly employed by the U.S. Army Air Corps (later the Air Force) and Britains Royal Air Force. The British were actually the first to make jet engine technology available to the civilian market: the De Havilland Comet became the first commercial jet airliner around 1950. After nearly sixty years, many of these are still in service as transport planes for the Royal Air Force.

Business aircraft had been around since the early 1930s, but it wasn’t until 1964 that the first small private jet was manufactured and offered to the general public. The Learjet 23 was actually based on a proposed fighter-jet design for the Swiss Air Force. The Swiss passed on the design, but William P. Lear saw its potential and with this aircraft, a new market for efficient, high-speed private jet charter was opened.

The Learjet 23 was followed by several more models, and competing companies entered the fray as well. Today, when you book your private jet charter, you’ll very likely be flying a Learjet 60, a Gulfstream IV or a Cessna Citation X, depending on your destination, needs and schedule.

Jonathan Blocker


6 Responses to “Traveling by a Private Jet”

  1. warrior on February 26th, 2009 8:40 am

    Why are our politicians still traveling in private jets?
    If overpaid C.E.O.s are being compelled to cutback on this luxury, how can our much lower paid politicians afford to travel in private jets? Most of us taxpayers are struggling to just put gasoline in our gas tanks to drive to the store to buy canned beans…

  2. pretty ric on February 26th, 2009 8:42 am

    References :

  3. Lauren L on February 26th, 2009 8:44 am

    well they gain money from there job, to rais taxes and chang them and get paid to make choises, but somtims they hav 2 go on prvt gets for safty of asasination
    References :

  4. george.gauthierdc on February 26th, 2009 8:46 am

    The politicians ride in public jets, owned by governments. Some of their trips undoubtedly are junkets.

    Not all corporate jet travel is a simple luxury. These are flights on smaller planes that can fly into and out of regional airports with shorter runways. Corporate jets maximize the time of corporate officers and decision makers. They often make a lot of sense economically.
    References :

  5. angels_angelsarehere on February 26th, 2009 8:48 am

    Fringe benefits,
    that's why they are always arguing about cutting "their" budgets. and pretend to fight tax hikes, on the poor/lower income
    References :

  6. YeeeHaaaa on February 26th, 2009 8:50 am

    The jets that they fly in are apart of the 89th Airlift Wing of the U.S. Air Force. The ability for a legislator to quickly travel from their home state to Washington D.C. is critical to to continuity of government. While trips for them are not all ways necessary, their ability to travel in safety is crucial.

    Its not always bad to fly a corporate jet. If your company is doing bad or good fly all you want. When you have to ask the tax payers for money, sell the play or ground it until the company is doing better.
    References :

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