Glidden Sweet Doman first became interested in helicopters after hearing Igor Sikorsky speak.
A graduate of the University of Michigan’s College of Engineering, in 1943 Doman went to work for the Sikorsky Company in Stratford, CT. There he worked to simplify the Sikorsky R-6 rotor head, reduce stress on the rotor blades, and reduce forces on the aircraft’s controls. His work was so vital that Igor Sikorsky personally convinced the draft board to keep Doman at the company during World War II.
In 1945, Doman founded Doman Helicopters in Danbury, CT, where he continued his innovations in helicopter technology including his sealed, rigid, hingeless rotor system. Although his work was a technological success, Doman was unable to raise sufficient capital to begin mass production and the company closed in 1969. Doman went on to develop wind turbines in the wind energy program at Hamilton Standard. He was also a founding member of the American Helicopter Society. Doman was closely connected to the museum, and the New England Air Museum is proud to have two of Glidden Doman’s helicopters on display in the Civil Aviation Hangar, including the only surviving example of the Doman LZ-5 helicopter.