GILLES AULIARD COLLECTION
No. 9422. Esnault-Pelterie R.E.P.1
Photographed at CNAM, Paris, France, March 24, 2009, by Gilles Auliard

Esnault-Pelterie R.E.P.1

11/30/2009. Robert Esnault-Pelterie (Paris, November 8, 1881- Nice, December 6, 1957) was an inventive pioneer and one of the outstanding figures in French aviation. He built a glider in 1904, learned to fly in 1906 (French pilot license number 4) and invented: the ailerons(1903), the "stick" type of control column (1906), the metallic plane (1907), the radial engine with an odd number of cylinders (1907), and the oleo-type undercarriage (1907).

In 1907 Esnault-Pelterie won the Grand Prix de la Societe des Ingenieurs Civils for constructing an aircraft which was revolutionary in three aspects: a monoplane, with a radial engine mounted in the front. In 1908 he founded the first aircraft factory, and co-founded what are now the Paris Air Show and the GIFAS (Groupement des Industries Françaises Aéro Spatiales, the French aerospace industries association).

On October 19, 1907, Esnault-Pelterie flew the R.E.P.1, his first powered plane, with a fuselage of welded-steel tubing (completely enclosed, also a first) covered with red muslin, and featured internally braced wings. It was powered by a 35 hp Esnault-Pelterie seven-cylinder air-cooled radial engine. The aircraft is preserved at the Conservatoire National de Arts et Metiers (CNAM, National Conservatory for Arts and Sciences).

Created November 30, 2009