Interest in trans-ocean flying is intense, but some of the practical aspects of the undertaking have been overlooked.
Complete and adequate terminal facilities must be made available by the various cities interested in obtaining trans-ocean air transport business. The author mentions some of the requirements which must be taken in the consideration of the further development of these terminal facilities.
The degree of seaworthiness of flying boats is discussed in conjunction with actual data on seas obtained in the operating areas. The author recommends that a definite method of measurement be developed and constant records kept in the same manner as weather and tide data is obtained.
With the increase in the complexity of operating large flying boats consideration must be given to the abilities of the flight personnel. Division of labor has been introduced to solve this problem.
Courses to be flown are determined not by route maps but by weather maps.
Mr. Chairman, Members of the Society, Gentlemen:
In some respects, the intense public interest which has blanketed what have been, in the public mind, spectacular attempts at the conquest by air of the world's great oceans, has made far more difficult than necessary, the proper consideration of many important technical aspects which form the keys to successful transoceanic operation, the success of which requires the concerted effort of all those directly or indirectly associated with the science of aviation today.
The public's consideration of air transportation viewed from the economic aspect is subject to the general consideration that the time required to negotiate some predetermined distance is the result of a compromise between the demand for rapid passage and the cost of transportation. And, from the business angle, as in every successful business, there must be a return on the investment -- a source of revenue must be available which will defray the total costs and produce a profit.
Nowhere in the world are the potential markets for traffic as great as on the serial trade route over the Atlantic -- between the United States and Europe. The populations which will be linked not only are numerous, but provide the most important trade sources and outlets in world commerce, and as a result this projected service has to a high degree the requisites for economic success.
Passing on, therefore, to other considerations -- one most important factor is represented by terminal and intermediate landing facilities.
In trans-ocean flying boat operation, the safety factor is greatly increased by the water areas that provide notably adequate opportunities for surface landings. However, with the present development of the art and as our flying boats increase in size, we are also forced to increase the size of these landing areas. Such adequate landing areas for scheduled operations should be adjacent to complete terminal facilities properly equipped for day and night landings and take-offs. Cities that desire to enter into the inter-national air-transportation field must make available these complete flying boat operating facilities, as is being done now at New York, Baltimore and Charleston.