From The Archives: Trans-Atlantic Flight And Meteorology

In an article published 103 years ago this week, author Willis Ray Gregg examines average surface meteorological conditions over the North Atlantic, the effect of winds and how these might provide a pilot with useful information to help him "carefully select his time for flight".

Gregg discusses the importance of understanding average surface weather conditions which include temperatures, humidity, cloudiness, fog, pressure, wind, precipitation, and gales. 

"Temperatures are of interest chiefly in connection with their effect upon aviators and upon engine performance," he wrote.

Gregg described fog as one of the most serious obstacles to transatlantic flight and can found in the southeast and east region of Newfoundland "to about 60 per cent in summer and about 20-35 per cent in winter". We learn that fogs rarely occur near the Azores. 

The article is illustrated with a diagram of proposed routes for transatlantic flight and a table of mean monthly and annual temperatures of Lisbon, Azores, and St Johns. 

If you're a subscriber you can read the full article published on May 1, 1919 of our magazine which was called Aviation. 

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