Fifty Years Ago - 1951
These notes comprise extracts from weekly "Interavia" notes, and the DCA Annual Report of 1951. It was a year in which international passenger flights to and from Australia were being proposed or inaugurated.
Work is expected to begin soon on a new airport at Mt Isa, which has been associated with early Australian commercial aviation history as a stopping point on the Cloncurry-Camooweal service, opened by Qantas in 1926.
proposed that Perth should replace Darwin as the entry port for their Constellation
service between Britain and Australia. When this happened, Darwin would lose one
of its most important economic assets in the hostel at Berimah, used by Qantas
and BOAC. [Note: This change never actually took place].
|Pan American inaugurated their new USA-Australia 'Stratocruiser' service on 7th March, following preliminary demonstration flights at Melbourne and Sydney. The twice-weekly flights will terminate at Sydney.|
a result of a survey, the Government approved the provision of technical facilities
on Cocos Island as DC-4 aircraft would have to land there en-route to Johannesberg.
A ship was chartered to take an RAAF construction party and 4,000 tons of mechanical
earth-moving equipment to the island to construct a new runway. DCA provided communication
facilities, and a search and rescue launch.
A runway localiser has been installed at Essendon Airport. This is to aid traffic handling and descent under IFR conditions, and to provide a basis for research into instrument landing procedures. [The equipment was a wartime SCS-51 installation].
DCA statistics show an overall increase in domestic aviation. For the 12 months to 31st March 1951, route mileage increased by 13% and actual miles flown by 9.4%. Australian aircraft are now flying almost 41 million miles a year. Passengers carried (1,689,069) rose by 12.9%.
Dr R.R ('Dick') Shaw who served with the RAAF in WWII, and who later graduated as Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering (Melbourne 1948) and Doctor of Philosophy (Oxford 1950), has been appointed as a Divisional Aeronautical Engineer with DCA.
ICAO has appointed Group Captain Stuart Campbell, Director of Air Navigation and Safety in DCA, as aviation adviser to the Government of Thailand. Campbell joined the RAAF as a cadet in 1926. He has had considerable Antarctic experience, first as the air member of one of Sir Douglas Mawsons expeditions in 1947-48.
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