French inventor and engineer Clément Ader, born in Muret, Haute-garonne, was known mainly for his pioneering work in aviation.
Ader spent a large amount of his time and money on the development of mechanical flight, and remained involved in this work until his death. He built his first flying machine, the Éole, in 1886. It was a bat-like machine run by a lightweight steam engine, with four cylinders generating 20 horsepower and driving a four-blade propeller. The engine weighed around 4 kilograms, and had a wing-span of 14 meters. Ader managed to get Éole off the ground on 9 October 1890.
Ader later began to build a second aircraft he named the Avion II. Most believed that this aircraft was never completed before he went on to construct another aircraft called the Avion III. Ader himself claimed that he flew the Avion II, but there was no concrete evidence to back up his claim.
Later, Ader obtained backing from the French War Office and completed construction of the Avion III. It looked like an enormous bat made of linen and wood, equipped with two four bladed tractor propellers, each powered by a steam engine of 30 horsepower, and with a 15 meter wingspan. Ader carried out taxiing trials in Satory on October12, 1897 and two days later tried to fly the machine. The flight was unsuccessful, and the French army withdrew its funding.
In 1909, Clément Ader published L'aviation Militaire, a very popular book notable for its vision of air warfare and an early form of the modern aircraft carrier, with a flat flight deck, an island superstructure, deck elevators, and a hangar bay.
Clément Ader's Avion III is still on display at the Musée des Arts et Métiers in Paris.
Ader is still admired for his pioneering flight efforts, and his aircraft gave the French language the word avion for a heavierthan-air aircraft. France even issued a postage stamp honoring him in 1938. One of Airbus’ aircraft assembly sites in Toulouse was named after him. Clément Ader has also been called "the father of aviation."
Ader died in Toulous, Haute Garonne, on May 3, 1925 at the age of 84.
之后Ader开始制造其第二架飞机Avion II。很多人认为，在他制造另一架飞机Avion III之前，这架飞机并未完成。Ader曾宣布Avion II已进行飞行，但并无确切证据支撑这一声明。
之后， Ader获得法国战争办公室的支持，并制造完成了Avion III。它看起来像是亚麻布和木材做成的超大蝙蝠，配备了两个四桨叶牵引螺旋桨，每个螺旋桨由一台30马力的蒸汽发动机提供动力，翼展15米。1897年10月12日， Ader在萨托利进行了滑行试验， 2天后进行了试飞。但飞行未获得成功，法国军方取消了赞助。
1909年， Clément Ader出版了L'aviation Militaire （《军事航空》），这是一本著名的对空战和航空母舰雏形进行构想的畅销书，其对航母的设想包括平坦的飞行甲板、岛式上层建筑、甲板升降机和机库舱。
Clément Ader的Avion III目前仍在巴黎的工艺博物馆展出。Ader对飞行的开创性贡献令人敬佩，由于他的飞行器，人们使用法语单词avion来形容重于空气的航空器。1938年，法国曾发行邮票纪念他，空客飞机的总装厂所在地图卢兹也是根据他命名的。Clément Ader被称为“航空之父”。