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Top Flying Aces of World War I – 14

Max Immelmann

Credit: Imperial War Museums

Max Immelmann (1890-1916) was the first German air ace of World War I.

His death in June 1916 caused such shock that another German air ace, Oswald Boelcke, was temporarily grounded out of fear of the effect successive pilots’ deaths would have on morale back home.

Immelmann was notable, however, for developing an aerial loop-and-roll maneuver that allowed pilots to dive behind a pursuing fighter.

This became a standard technique throughout the war and is still known as the “Immelmann Turn.”

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