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William F. Durand
William F. Durand

The Wright Brothers Memorial Trophy was established by the National Aeronautic Association (NAA) in 1948 after a trust fund was created in 1936 by Godfrey Lowell Cabot of Boston, a former president of the NAA. It is awarded to a living American for "significant public service of enduring value to aviation in the United States." The presentation of the award is made annually at the Aero Club of Washington, as close as possible to December 17 each year, the day on which, in 1903, the Wright brothers made the first flight in an airplane. The inaugural recipient of the trophy was William F. Durand (pictured), "a pioneer in aeronautics, naval propulsion and engineering research methods". Until 2010, winners of the award received a trophy depicting the Wright brothers' Wright Flyer aircraft. From 2010 onwards, a redesigned trophy featuring a silver obelisk and bronze inscription has been awarded. The trophy has only been awarded to women on three occasions. The most recent winner of the Wright Brothers Memorial Trophy, in 2017, was John R. Dailey. (Full list...)

Today's featured picture

NGC 1427A

NGC 1427A is an irregular galaxy in the constellation Eridanus. It is estimated to be some 52 million light years from Earth.

Photograph: NASA, ESA, and The Hubble Heritage Team

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