Wyle celebrated its 100th anniversary with a buzz only an aerospace company can make. In honor of the company’s involvement in every aircraft flown by the U.S. Navy since 1950, Wyle commissioned a fully functional reproduction of Eugene B. Ely’s 1911 Curtiss Pusher, the first plane to land onboard a ship.
“As a former naval aviator and Wyle’s chief pilot for 20 years, I can tell you that Ely established a legacy and issued a resounding challenge to naval aviators, flight officers, aircrew, engineers, scientists, technologists and administrators who would follow him in writing the amazing story of naval aviation,” said Pete Green, president of Wyle’s Aerospace group. “Wyle’s professionals are proud to play a part in answering that challenge.”
The replica was built and flown by Bob Coolbaugh and a group of volunteers. The plane was displayed at the Navy League’s Sea Air Space Exposition at Maryland’s National Harbor and will appear at New York City Fleet Week in Brooklyn, N.Y., May 22-27.
Wyle has a long history supporting Naval aviation. The aerospace firm currently serves the F/A-18 Hornet, the E-2 Hawkeye, H-60 Seahawk, P-3 Orion, P-8 Poseidon and the Joint Strike Fighter.
Wyle also maintains a presence in unmanned aerial vehicle platforms and its independent flight test organization supports several government flight-test programs.