History of Flight
1943 The First Military Vertical Wind Tunnel at Wright Patterson Air Force (they didn’t realize humans could fly in these yet!)
1957 First Artificial Satellite
1958 First Successful Satellite in the United States
1959 Strategic Army Corps Parachute Team – formed by 13 military paratroopers
1962 Golden Knights – Strategic Army Corps Parachute Team officially adopts their new nickname
1958 Nasa Space Act
1959 Astronauts – The first American astronauts were chosen
1962 First Interplanetary Probe
1962 First American in Orbit
1967 Concorde Jet Aircraft
1968 Boeing 747
1964 First Human Vertical Wind Tunnel Flight at Wright Patterson A.F.B.
1969 First Manned Lunar Landing
1976 First Spacecraft to operate on Mars
1977 Cheryl Stearns – The first woman on the Golden Knights. The team entertains their 100 millionth spectator
1978/1979 Canadian Jean St. Jermain builds Levitationarium (aka VWT) Known to be the FIRST commercially operated Bodyflight Facility.
1981 FlyAway Indoor Skydiving – Construction begins on two facilities Las Vegas Nevada and Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
1982 FlyAway Indoor Skydiving Opens to public with both locations, Las Vegas opened shortly before Pigeon Forge, TN.
1983 First Spacecraft to leave our Solar System
1984 Vertical Wind Tunnel Corporation begins R&D
1990 FlyAway Indoor Skydiving of Osaka,Japan opens to the public
1990 Airofly – Top of Tampa – First Tunnel Competition in the U.S.
1991 Aerodium of Oberglatt Switzerland Outdoor Facility
1991 American Dream Flying Machine Portable Facility becomes operational
1993 DynaSoar Portable Wind Tunnel Introduced
1995 SkyFun Of Florida begins design on New Vertical Wind Tunnel
1997 DynaSoar Transfers Ownership To J.D.L Inc. Renamed Powerflyte.
1997 Xtreme Air Portable Wind Tunnel becomes operational
1998 SkyVenture Of Florida Opens to the public
1998 Egyptian Military Builds a Vertical Wind Tunnel to Aid in Training
1999 First Non Stop Flight around the World in a Balloon
2000 Former Canadian VWT transfers ownership to Bodyflight Skydive Simulators.
2000 Swiss Manufacturers of Aerodium builds their first portable
Genting, Singapore – Sky Venture Genting opens up in the City of Entertainment
August @ WFFC in Rantoul,IL. John Suiter wins title “World Champion Wind Tunnel Flyer” in X-treme Air
August Marissa Partners LLC. announce the future opening of The Tunnel VS1 in Lake Elsinore, California
December X-treme Air portable wind tunnel under new management, making a dropzone circuit in the Western U.S.
February 19th – SkyVenture in partnership with Joao Tambor host the first “SkyVenture Challenge”, the first Vertical Wind Tunnel competition held at SkyVenture Orlando. Many new talent was discovered during this first event, including a new Zero Porosity flight suit design made by Nancy Tremblay of Ouragon Suits and popularized by Chris Calwell during his performance!
December 17, 2003 – 100th Anniversary The Wright Brothers – Using the wind tunnel test data, a second Wright Flyer will be built by AIAA ( American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics) volunteers and flown on Dec.17, 2003 at 10:32 a.m. EST, commemorating the 100th anniversary flight of Orville and Wilbur Wright at Kitty Hawk, N.C.
Appalachian Amusement Center Opens for Reservations
– Record number of simultaneous flyers “8” at A.A.C in North Carolina
SkyVenture Arizona Breaks Ground
Adren-L-N 2 Completes purchase of L1 and begins work on construction of their 2nd Vertical Wind Tunnel
SkyVenture UK Completes funding target and begins work toward construction
– Extreme Sports Cafe announces Tunnel Camps at SkyVenture Malaysia beginning January 2005
– Bodyflight Bedford partners with Bodyflying Zurich and schedules completion of former UK military facility
– Off the Wall productions tunnel is under new ownership by VR Skydiving
-Lifted Entertainment moves to semi-permanent home in O’ahu Hawaii
– SkyVenture Orlando hosts “Bodyflight Challenge III”
– Flyaway Las Vegas announces it’s plans to close permanently, date not specified at this time.
– Bodyflight Gran Canaria sold to Korea
– Vertical Velocity offered up for sale
– W.F.F.C. has a VWT onsite for the 3rd year in a row!
2005 Industry Review
- Appalachian Amusement Center holds 2 Boogies
- A.A.C in North Carolina
- SkyVenture Arizona the second largest diameter VWT completes construction and opens for business
- SkyVenture UK is renamed Airkix, completes construction of the first recirculating SkyVenture design and opens for business
- Bodyflight Bedford, the largest diameter VWT in the world completes construction and opens for business
- VR Skydiving assumes the college circuit tour dropped by Lifted Entertainment
- SkyVenture Orlando hosts “Tunnel for the Cause”
- Flyaway Las Vegas now with new owners, revamps and secures it’s future operations!
- Vertical Velocity sold for rock bottom prices and is now under private ownership in Indiana
- The Pink Mafia Tunnel Sisters group is formed
- In 2005, Bodyflight Network serviced a record breaking number of users!! Just over 250,000!
- Tunnelflyer.com emerges as a popular online forum
- Latvian VWT owners secure position in opening ceremonies for the Olympics 2006
- SkyVenture New Hampshire begins construction
- SkyVenture Colorado begins consturction and is now nearly complete
Since 2007 the entire vertical wind tunnel industry has just simply EXPLODED!
Thousands of Freefly and Relative work teams
Nearly every state in the United States has a vertical wind tunnel for tourists to enjoy
…. this page is being updated.