Solomon Andrews (inventor)

Solomon Andrews (inventor)

Solomon Andrews (1806-1872) of Perth Amboy, New Jersey invented the first dirigible airship. The difference of specific gravity between the balloon and the surrounding atmosphere could be converted by a system of inclined planes to steer the craft, without a motor.clarifyme|date=June 2008

His first "Aereon" flew over Perth Amboy on June 1, 1863. This had three 80-foot cigar-shaped balloons, with a rudder and gondola. Dr. Andrews wrote Abraham Lincoln later that summer offering the Aereon for use in the American Civil War; after much discussion, he arranged a demonstration early in 1864 before the Smithsonian Institution. He was informed, nearly a year later, that the Government had little interest in his invention, and by that time the war was nearly over.

Andrews then organized the Aerial Navigation Company to build commercial Airships and establish a regular line between New York and Philadelphia. The "Aereon #2", with one spheroid balloon, flew over New York City on May 25, 1865 and June 5, 1865; the second trip ended at Oyster Bay, Long Island. At this point, the post-war economic collapse and its bank failures destroyed the company, and he never flew again.

Andrews also invented a sewing machine, a barrel making machine, fumigators,Daniel Geery. 2007. [ hyperblimp history] ] forging presses, a kitchen range, a gas lamp and a padlock which has been used by the U.S. Post Office since 1842.

He was a medical doctor and three times mayor of Perth Amboy; he constructed the city's first sewer system.

The Aereon Corporation attempted, in New Jersey in 1969, to replicate and improve on the airship designs of Solomon Andrews. This was written about in the book "The Deltoid Pumpkin Seed," by John McPhee (ISBN 9780374516352). This book and Andrews' work provided the inspiration for development of the Hyperblimp, and various embodiments of an underwater gliding toy, by inventor Daniel Geery.

Andrews was the first person known to demonstrate directional human flight; he did so considerably before the Albertos Santos-Dumont or the Wright Brothers.


External links

* Stevens Institute of Technology page on [ 1992 Pioneer inductees] , Solomon Andrews (1806-1872)
* [ hyperblimp] , Daniel Geery, 2007

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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