According to the historian Davis Logsdon, who has been sifting through mounds of photographic evidence at the University of Minnesota, the nation apparently once held the view that investing in science and even math could yield accomplishments that would be a source of national pride.
While Logsdon has not developed a complete theory to explain the United States' pro-science stance during that era, he attributes some of it to the liberal views of the President at that time, Richard M. Nixon.
When Chip Yates started working on his electric airplane in 2012, he wasn't trying to make conventional, gas-powered aircraft look slow. That hasn't changed, he says. "That was not the design goal."
But he's happy to point out his plane is as fast or faster than its competitors that run on single piston gas engines. The five world records Yates set last year for electric planes were finally officially verified by the Fédération Aéronautique International (FAI) last week, and now he can officially claim bragging rights.