Gabriel and Charles Voisin were among Europe's leading pioneer aviators. Their classic 1907 pusher biplane was one of the most significant aircraft of the pre-World War I era. In 1912, they developed a military version. Thereafter they built aircraft almost exclusively for military contracts. The Voisin 1912 Type, as it was referred to by the French military, also called the Type 1, launched the standard configuration of almost all Voisin aircraft throughout the war. The Voisin design philosophy was conservative. There were only slight, incremental design changes in the airframes during the war. Improvements principally consisted of installing more powerful engines, usually necessitating wings of greater span. The Voisin Type 8 entered service with French night bombing squadrons in November 1916.NASM's Voisin Type 8 is the oldest surviving aircraft that was specifically designed as a bomber. When manufactured in February 1916, it was equipped as a night bomber, with internal bomb racks, cockpit lights, and provision for landing lights.