March 5, 1943First flight of Gloster Meteor jet aircraft in the United Kingdom.
The Gloster Meteor was the first British jet fighter and the Allies' first operational jet, although the German Messerschmitt Me 262 was the world's first operational jet the Meteor was the first production jet as it entered production a few months before the Me 262. The Meteor's development was heavily reliant on its ground-breaking turbojet engines, developed by Sir Frank Whittle and his company, Power Jets Ltd. Development of the aircraft began in 1940, work on the engines had started in 1936. The Meteor first flew in 1943 and commenced operations on 27 July 1944 with 616 Squadron of the Royal Air Force (RAF). Although the Meteor was not an aerodynamically advanced aircraft, it proved to be a successful and effective combat fighter.