The Wright Brothers
It’s a common knowledge that Wilbur and Orville Wright were the first to successfully fly a piloted, powered, heavier than air object. The process leading to that successful flight in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, was fraught with obstacles ranging from what the brothers believed to be faulty data to difficulties in obtaining the ideal materials. Through it all, the Wrights combined a systematic approach with dogged determination to overcome each impediment. The net result for these first aeronautical engineers was not only that first successful flight on December 17, 1903. The Wrights also proved the value of testing airfoil models in a wind tunnel to anticipate the performance of a variety of wing structures during the design phase and before construction of an actual aircraft began.