ADDIS ABABA—Ethiopian Airlines is dispatching its first-ever flight operated by an all-female crew. The flight was scheduled to depart for Bangkok, Thailand, Wednesday night. The airline says it wants to promote women’s empowerment and encourage more African girls to pursue aviation careers.

Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde Gebremariam said attracting more women to aviation jobs is one of the reasons for hosting the female flight, together with empowering women.

“It’s going to be very inspiring for all the women all over the world, aviation women and particularly the African woman. Because, as you know, here in the continent of Africa, we are lagging behind in women empowerment. So this is going to inspire all the school girls in Africa that they have a very bright future in the 21st century,” Gebremariam said.

The flight is being handled by women in every aspect – from planning, to aircraft maintenance, and from the pilots to air traffic controllers. Even upon arrival in Bangkok, all customs and immigration officers will be female.

Ethiopian Airlines says about one third of its employees are women. But the number is smaller when it comes to positions such as pilots and technicians.

HC-144 Ocean Sentry

A total of 36 aircraft were planned to be procured, with twelve Mission System Pallets being swapped between the operational aircraft

     Other than the Blackbird family of aircraft, I plan on covering rocket planes, experimental aircraft, any oddball/interesting aerospace items I stumble upon, and prototypes. This is one of my prototype posts, covering the YF-17.

     On the left, we have Northrop YF-17 Cobra, Prototype 72-1570. This prototype, one of only two ever made, would eventually be developed into the F/A-18.

     The bird on the right is McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet 162417, Snake 407, the first Hornet to see battle.

     In the 1960s, the United States Air Force initiated an acquisition program called the Lightweight Fighter Competition (LWF). This competitive prototyping competition pitted two aircraft together, the General Dynamics YF-16, and Northrop’s YF-17. Both aircraft would conduct flyoffs against each other, competing for an Air Force production contract. Our YF-17 actually lost. The YF-16 won the Air Force contract and went into production as the F-16 we know today. Rather than scrapping the losing YF-17, the United States Navy favored the design for carrier use and developed it into the widely used F/A-18 Hornet.

     Both of these aircraft are on display at the USS Alabama Battleship Museum in Mobile, Alabama. The museum also contains A-12 #06938, which I’ve covered on multiple previous posts in this project.

As the traveling public knows, all electronic devices are screened by security officers. During the security examination, officers may also ask that owners power up some devices, including cell phones. Powerless devices will not be permitted onboard the aircraft.
—  The TSA plans to confirm that overseas travelers have functional cell phones before they get on a flight to enter the U.S. Be sure to charge up beforehand.

This week the first all-female flight crew from Ethiopia took to the skies, making history and inspiring girls to pursue aviation careers. From planning, to aircraft maintenance, and from the pilots to air traffic controllers, the women were in charge.

“This is going to inspire all the school girls in Africa that they have a very bright future in the 21st century,” said Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde Gebremariam.

Read more via Voice of America - VOA:

The Junkers Ju 252 was a cargo aircraft that made its first flight in late October 1941. The aircraft was planned as a replacement for the Junkers Ju 52/3m in commercial airline service, but only a small number were built as cargo aircraft for the Luftwaffe

On Tuesday the 13th of September 2011, Zurich’s Mayor christened Lufthansa’s sixth A380 Super Jumbo “Zurich” at the hub of Swiss Airlines at Zurich International airport.

To kick off the baptism of the A380, F/A-18 fighter jets of the Swiss Air Force intercepted to the photo shoot.

The Swiss Air Force used this A380 Lufthansa flight by its own account for an excersice in air policing. Two Swiss Air Force Hornets conducted a QRA training interception of the new Airbus on its flight through Swiss airspace, and flew in formation with the A380 accompanying the aircraft, as planned, to Zurich airport.