09.04.

1937: A Japanese Aircraft Makes its First Landing in Europe

1937: A Japanese Aircraft Makes its First Landing in Europe
Photo Credit To Wikipedia Commons / Mitsubishi Ki-15 Karigane aircraft

Story Highlights

  • Historical event
  • 9 April 1937
  • The flight sparked media interest, and pilot Masaaki Iinuma was addressed as the "Japanese Lindbergh".

This day in 1937 marked the first successful flight from Japan to London. The plane was called “Kamikaze” which means “holy wind” or “divine wind” in Japanese language.

The Mitsubishi Ki-15 was a Japanese aircraft, and something akin to a light bomber. These aircraft had a 750-horsepower radial engine, and they could achieve speeds of 480 kilometers per hour.

Masaaki Iinuma was a pilot responsible for safety during this extremely long flight from Japan to London. He was 24 years old. The navigator Kenji Tsukagoshi was flying with him.

They flew more than 15,357 kilometers, and it took them more than 94 hours to land in London (they took off in Tokyo). They spent more than 51 hours in the air.

They use a route from Tokyo to London which included following cities: Taipei, Hanoi, Vientiane, Calcutta, Karachi, Basra, Baghdad, Athens, Rome, Paris (and London).

The flight sparked media interest, and pilot Masaaki Iinuma was addressed as the “Japanese Lindbergh“, due to the famous flight of Charles Lindbergh across the Atlantic Ocean.

 

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