More than 16 months after leaving Abu Dhabi, the experimental solar-powered monoplane Solar Impulse 2 completed its first-of-a-kind circumnavigation of Earth by returning to the capital city of the United Arab Emirates. The innovative aircraft had been one of two built as part of a privately financed aviation project in Switzerland. The Swiss citizens leading this... Continue Reading →

Anders Svedlund became the first person to cross the Indian Ocean in a rowing boat when he arrived at a beach near the city of Diego-Suarez (now Antsiranana) in northern Madagascar. Svedlund, who had been born in Sweden but ultimately moved to New Zealand, completed his pioneering journey 64 days after setting off from Western... Continue Reading →

Air Mauritius, the national airline of Mauritius, was officially established. It made its debut just nine months before Mauritius, an island nation in the Indian Ocean that is about 1,200 miles (1,900 km) off Africa’s southeast coast, ceased to exist as a British colony and instead became an independent state within the British Commonwealth. Air... Continue Reading →

A hugely successful airborne humanitarian mission in Ethiopia resulted in the establishment of a new and still-intact flight record. Operation Solomon was an Israeli military effort to airlift thousands of Ethiopian Jews to Israel within a tight timeframe. At the time, Ethiopia was in grave danger of political destabilization as the government of Mengistu Aile... Continue Reading →

David Animle Hansen, who played a pioneering role in the development of the Ghana Navy, was born in the city of Accra. At the time, Accra and the remainder of present-day Ghana were under British rule as the colony of the Gold Coast along West Africa’s Gulf of Guinea. Hansen underwent military training at the... Continue Reading →

Jan Smuts International Airport began operations in the city of Kempton Park, 20 miles northeast of Johannesburg, in what was then the Union of South Africa. (The Republic of South Africa came into existence nine years later.) The South African Airways’ Skymaster plane named Tafelberg was the first aircraft to touch down at the new... Continue Reading →

[Unfortunately, no pictures of HMSAS Africana exist.] After several years of military service that included life-saving actions during World War II, HMSAS (His Majesty’s South African Ship) Africana was decommissioned. The ship, which was launched in 1930, spent most of her existence as a South African vessel at a time when the country had semi-independent... Continue Reading →

The first flight between Portugal and its then-territory of Madeira, a North Atlantic archipelago located 280 nautical miles off the coast of Africa, took place when a Felixstowe F .3 seaplane traveled from Lisbon to the city of Funchal on the southern shore of Madeira’s main island. The Portuguese Naval Aeronautical Service crew on board... Continue Reading →

The first section of a bus rapid transit system in the Nigerian state of Lagos (in the southwestern part of the nation) began operations. The Lagos Bus Rapid Transit System (Lagos BRT), which is run by the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, was inaugurated to help address the ever-increasing traffic congestion challenges facing this region... Continue Reading →

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