Search: goodyear blimp
Why: I just saw it doing donuts above the Staples Center.
Answer: As the world's largest tire and rubber company, Goodyear has been building airships for the US Navy since 1911. They consist of helium-filled envelopes fitted with internal metal frames that maintain their shape. They were designed as aerial aircraft carriers and could launch and retrieve specially equipped planes while in flight. Goodyear introduced its own civil airship, Pilgrim, in 1925.
The More You Know: Today there are three blimps in the fleet:
- Spirit of America, christened 2002, based in Carson, CA (near LA)
- Spirit of Goodyear, christened 2000 by Sally Ride, based in Suffield, OH (near Akron)
- Spirit of Innovation, christened 2006, based in Pompano Beach, FL