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December 19, 2011
By Jill W. Tallman
The National Aviation Hall of Fame Dec. 17 unveiled the four people who will be enshrined in 2012 in recognition of their aviation achievements.
Geraldyn “Jerrie” Cobb, a flight instructor and air race champion, was the first woman to successfully complete the astronaut testing protocol designed for the Mercury 7 astronauts.
Keith Ferris is an aviation artist, historian, lecturer, and inventor. His mural of the B-17 Flying Fortress fills a wall in the National Air and Space Museum’s World War II aviation exhibit in Washington, D.C.
The late Lt. Gen. Elwood R. “Pete” Quesada helped to develop and successfully demonstrate air-to-air refueling in 1929. He later helped to establish and was head of the FAA.
The late Richard T. Whitcomb, an aeronautical engineer who spent most of his career at NASA’s Langley Research Center, developed the Area Rule, in which the shape of a fuselage can be changed to reduce the aircraft shock wave drag that occurs near the speed of sound. He also developed the supercritical airfoil and winglets.
The 2012 Hall of Fame nominees will be inducted at a date to be announced. The 2012 event marks the organization’s fiftieth anniversary.
AOPA Technical Editor Jill W. Tallman is an instrument-rated private pilot who owns a Piper Cherokee 140.
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