When intercontinental flight became possible at the end of the Second World War, a fourth man was needed in the cockpit: the navigator was responsible for regular position checks over uninhabited territory by means of the stars or radio beacons. The Convair CV-990A Coronado and the DC-8 were the last Swissair aircraft to carry a navigator. The last navigator left the airline in 1979. The inertial navigation system that can determine an aircraft’s position without the need for external references made the job superfluous.
(Picture: Swiss Museum of Transport Archive)


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