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Early Technology - Saving the Lives of Military Pilots © by Richard T. Kusiolek (all rights reserved)

"Parachutes have saved more than 100,000 lives since their invention, and using one is now safer than driving a car. But the development of this life-saver required huge leaps of faith by pioneering engineers and courageous test jumpers who risked their lives for innovation.” The Evolution of Parachutes - “Before Sebastien Lenormand, other early inventors designed and tested parachutes. Croatian Faust Vrancic, for instance, constructed a device based on Da Vinci's drawing. To demonstrate it, Vrancic jumped from a Venice tower in 1617 wearing a rigid-framed parachute. Vrancic detailed his parachute and published it in Machinae Novae, in which he describes in text and pictures fifty-six advanced technical constructions, including Vrancic's parachute, which he called the Homo Volans.

First Soft Parachute - In 1793, Jean-Pierre Blanchard claimed to have escaped from a hot air balloon that exploded with a parachute. However, there were no witnesses. Blanchard, it should be noted, did develop the first foldable parachute made from silk. Up until that point all parachutes were made with rigid frames.

In 1797, Andrew Garnerin became the first person recorded to jump with a parachute without a rigid frame. Garnerin jumped from hot air balloons as high as 8,000 feet in the air. Garnerin also designed the first air vent in a parachute intended to reduce oscillations. When opened, the Andrew Garnerin parachute resembled a huge umbrella about thirty feet in diameter. It was made of canvas and was attached to a hydrogen balloon.”

In 1890, Paul Letteman and Kathchen Paulus invented the method of folding or packing the parachute in a knapsack to be worn on a person's back before its release. Kathchen Paulus was also behind the invention of the intentional breakaway, which is when one small parachute opens first and pulls open the main parachute.Two parachuters claim to be the first person to jump from an airplane. Both Grant Morton and Captain Albert Berry parachuted from an airplane in 1911. In 1914, Georgia "Tiny" Broadwick made the first freefall jump.

In 1934. Polish born Stanley Switlik and George Palmer Putnam, Amelia Earhart's husband, formed a joint venture and built a 115-foot tall tower on Stanley's farm in Ocean County. Designed to train airmen in parachute jumping, the first public jump from the tower was made by Ms. Earhart on June 2, 1935.

PARACHUTES” Premieres Tuesday, December 5 at 9 PM ET/PT. Discover the untold story of parachutes, from the early test-jumps from WWI biplanes to the massive chutes that land vehicles on Mars. (www.smithsonianchannel.com) Mary Bellis, History of the Parachute, Updated October 23, 2017, Blog Thought Co.

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About GMCstream

GMCStream is an American Internet media company based in Mountain View, California. The company is a social media news and information company with a directed focus on digital broadband media. GMCStream researches, analyzes, and highlights MILCOMM problems and solutions that may affect Global National Security. GMCStream was founded by Richard Kusiolek, an expert in Satellite Communications, cyber security, defense, and aerospace with private sector experience and expertise in international business development and strategy, particularly in China, Japan, and Eastern Europe. The company is growing organically into a specialized niche media and technology company providing streaming video coverage on a variety of topics including politics, space and missile systems, cyber-warfare, defense networks. STEM career webinars, and planet exploration.

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