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U. S. Military Aircraft


Consolidated Aircraft



Photo by US Air Force

The Model 32 flew in December 1939 as the XB-24 prototype of a long range bomber and used many features pioneered in the preceding Model 131 flying boat, including the high aspect ratio wing. Beginning at the end of 1940, production by four companies total 18,482 aircraft, a greater total than any other American plane of the period. In service the Liberator proved to process good handling, considerable structural strength and enormous versatility to allow the type's use as a bomber, maritime reconnaissance and transport plane. The type was extensively used as a bomber in the Pacific, Mediterranean and European theaters. The  Liberator's most famous single exploit was a day light raid against Romanian oil fields at Ploesti, when 174 aircraft took off, 54 were lost and only 33 were flyable. 




Description Specifications
Manufacturer: Consolidated Length: 67 ft. 2 in. 
First Flight: December 1939 Height: 18 ft. 0 in. 
Model: H Wing Span: 110 ft. 0 in. 
Crew: Eight / Twelve Wing Area: 1,048.0 sq. ft. 
Nickname: Liberator Empty Weight: 36,500 lb. 
Basic Role: Long range heavy bomber.  Max. Weight: 71,200 lb. 
Other Versions: B-24D and Liberator Mk III ( British ) first large scale production model with glazed nose and R-1830-43 engines. B-24E different propellers. B-24G first model with nose turret. B-24H improved B-24G B-24J and Liberator MK VI/VII a B-24H model with superior bombsight and autopilot.
B-24L a B-24J version with manually operated guns in place of tail turret. B-24M revised B-24J
Armament: Ten 0.5-in 12.7-mm machine guns in nose, dorsal, ventral, and tail turrets, and two beam position, and up to 12,800 lb of bombs. 
Principal User: Australia, Canada, Great Britain, and  USA. 



Power Plant: Pratt & Whitney R-1830-65 radial piston engines.  
Range: 2,100 miles  Horsepower: 1,200-hp. 
Max. Speed: 290 mph.  No. Of Engines: Four  
Ceiling: 28,000 ft.   
Climb Rate: 20,000 ft in 25 minute 0 seconds.   



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