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Republic XP-47F Thunderbolt
The sole XP-47F was a standard P-47B used to test a wide span laminar flow wing. It crashed on 14 October 1943, killing the test pilot, Captain A. McAdams.
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Republic P-47 Thunderbolt
Репаблік P-47 «Сандерболт» (англ. Republic P-47 Thunderbolt) — винищувач-бомбардувальник США, розроблений на початку 1940-х років фірмою Republic Aviation під керівництвом грузинського емігранта Олександра Картвелі. Розроблявся як заміна для літака Seversky P-35. P-47 «Сандерболт» був найбільшим, найважчим та найдорожчим винищувачем військово-повітряних сил армії США з поршневим двигуном внутрішнього згоряння. Був одним з найбільш розповсюджених літаків Другої світової війни, що знаходився на озброєнні американських ВПС, а також військово-повітряних сил країн-союзників. Поставлявся по ленд-лізу до Радянського Союзу. Отримав прізвисько "Джаг" (англ.Jug - Глечик).
XP-47H / XP-47J Редагувати
Republic зробила кілька спроб модернізувати P-47D: Було збудовано 2 XP-47H
XP-47J почали будувати у листопаді 1942 на запит до Republic збудувати високошвидкісну версію Thunderbolt з двигунами з водяним вприскуванням. Картвелі зробив новий літак із двигуном Pratt & Whitney R-2800-57(C) з потужністю 2,800 hp (2,090 kW), 6 кулеметів 0.50 in (12.7 мм), нове легше крило та багато інших покращень. Перший політ XP-47J здійснив в кінці листопада 1943 року. XP-47J досяг швидкості в 505 mph (440 kn, 813 км/год) у серпні 1944 року, ставши таким чином найшвидшим поршневим літаком того часу (в 1989 році було встановлено новий рекорд швидкості 850 км/год американським літаком "Rare Bear", сильно модифікованим Grumman F8F Bearcat).
Republic XP-47F Thunderbolt - History
Vac-formed canopy & Decal
Shipping charge: US$4.50
In 1940, Wright proposed a gigantic six-row 42-cylinder engine which would have an extremely small overall diameter, enabling aircraft designers to build fuselages with small cross section areas . This new turbo-supercharged engine, capable of developing 2,500hp, by then designated Tornado that inspired several aircraft industries to design warplanes around the new power-plant. One design was the Republic Model AP-18. The aircraft was envisaged as a replacement for the P-47 Thunderbolt. In 1941, Republic proposed the AP-18 to the USAAF and was received order for two prototypes which was designated XP-69. The mock-up was inspected in 1942 but the Tornado engine was never produced. While working on the XP-69 project, Republic was also designing other aircraft to be build around other new Pratt & Whitney engine which became the XP-72. In 1943, USAAF cancelled the XP-69 project in favor of the XP-72. Another design for a Wright Tornado engine was the Vultee XP-68 Tornado, which proposed to adapt the engine to fit the existing XP-54 Swoose Goose airframe.
High-altitude pursuit aircraft
To design a escort fighter which could replace the P-47 Thunderbolt
1x Wright R-2160-3 turbo-supercharged engine
The Republic XP-69 and Vultee XP-68 is suitable to group with the following collection series.
飛行中のエンジン火災によってターボチャージャー搭載の技術実証機AP-4は失われたが、この機体を気に入った米陸軍航空隊 (USAAC) は1939年5月にYP-43の制式名称で13機を発注した。しかし、USAACの要求を満たすには多くの改修が必要となり、YP-43の外見はAP-4とはずいぶん違ったものとなった。YP-43はプラット・アンド・ホイットニーのR-1830 ツインワスプを搭載した。これは空冷星形14気筒、ターボチャージャー付きのピストンエンジンで、出力は約1,200馬力だった。プロペラブレードは3枚。武装は機首に12.7 mm 機関銃が2丁 + 左右の主翼に7.62 mm 機関銃が1丁ずつ。コクピットのレイアウトは一新されたが、これは後に「レイザーバック」と呼ばれるようになる。
1940年9月から1941年4月にかけて、13機のYP-43が引き渡された。この間リパブリックは、YP-43により強力なエンジン(1,400馬力のP&W R-2180）を積んだXP-44 ロケットと、AP-10の開発に取り組んでいた。P-43の後継となるXP-44は39年10月に80機が発注された。AP-10は軽量戦闘機として設計され、アリソン製 V-1710 液冷エンジンを搭載し、2丁の12.7 mm機関銃を装備した。陸軍はこの計画を支援し、XP-47の制式名称を与えた。リパブリックにとっては幸先のいいスタートだった。
USAACは、XP-47Bの設計をにわかには信じられなかったと思われる。カルトベリはこう言ったらしい、「こいつは恐竜になるだろう。スタイルのいい恐竜にね」 XP-47Bの自重は約4,500 kgだったが、これはYP-43より65 %も重かった。新型機はP&W R-2800 ダブルワスプを動力とした。空冷星形18気筒（9気筒×2列）で、出力は約2,000馬力にも達した。胴体内に収納したターボチャージャーへはどっしりしたダクトが伸びていた。両翼内に4丁ずつ、計8丁のブローニング 12.7 mm 機関銃は、当時としては異常なほどの大火力だった。
XP-47BこそUSAACが待ち望んだ機体だと言えた。そこでXP-47Aと同様XP-44の開発も中止されたが、新型機の生産開始まではすこし間があいてしまう。リパブリックの生産ラインを維持するために、航空隊はP-43を54機発注した。XP-47B開発計画には遅れが生じ、USAACはエンジンを若干改良したP-43Aをさらに80機発注した。さらなる遅れによってP-43A-1が125機発注された。A-1は中華民国へのレンドリースを意図したもので、12.7 mm 機関銃を4丁と自動防漏燃料タンクを備えていた。
エンジンの排気はコクピットの両脇下方を通る2本のパイプによって後部へ導かれ、ターボチャージャーのタービンを駆動する。ターボチャージャーはコクピットと尾翼の中間あたりに位置する。フルパワー時には、パイプは赤熱する。ウェイストゲートシャッターが排気の仕分けを担当している。排気を直接外気へ逃がすか、高々度でエンジンの酸素が足りない状態のときにタービンへ導き、チャージャーを60,000 RPMで回すかのコントロールを行う。ターボチャージャーのインテイク（吸気口）には 胴体下部からダクトで吸気される。チャージャーで圧縮された空気はインタークーラーを通って冷却される。外気との熱交換で気温が下がると同時に空気密度が増加し、出力が増大する。インタークーラーを出た空気は胴体両側面を通って前方のキャブレター、エンジンへと向かう。
ブローニング製の12.7 mm機関銃を各翼外側に4丁ずつ、弾倉からの給弾のために互い違いに配置していた。各弾倉には銃弾を350ポンド、425発搭載した。自動防漏式の主・予備燃料タンクはコクピット下にあり、1,155リットル (305 USG)のガソリンを積むことができた（翼内タンクはまだなかった）。当時としてはかなりの量だったが、これでも不十分だったことが後に判明する。
XP-47BはUSAAFに楽観と懸念の両方をもたらした（USAAC 陸軍航空隊は1941年6月にUSAAF 陸軍航空軍となった。参考：アメリカ空軍）。機体性能も火力も申し分なかったが、非常に革新的な設計であったため、初期不良に見舞われることとなった。
6 May 1941
6 May 1941: Just eight months after a prototype for a new single-engine fighter was ordered by the U.S. Army Air Forces, test pilot Lowery Lawson Brabham took off from the Republic Aviation Corporation factory airfield at Farmingdale, New York, and flew the prototype XP-47B Thunderbolt, serial number 40-3051, to Mitchel Field, New York.
During the flight, oil which had collected in the exhaust duct began burning. There was so much smoke that Brabham considered bailing out. He stayed with the prototype, though, and when he arrived at Mitchel Field, he exclaimed, “I think we’ve hit the jackpot!”
The prototype was designed by Alexander Kartveli, a Georgian immigrant and former chief engineer for the Seversky Aircraft Corporation, which became the Republic Aviation Corporation in 1939.
Alexander Kartveli (née Kartvelishvili, ალექსანდრე ქართველი ) was born in Tbilisi, in the Kutais Governorate of the Russian Empire, (what is now, Georgia). After World War I, during which he was wounded, Kartvelishvili was sent to study at the Paris Aviation Higher College of Engineering in France by the government of the Democratic Republic of Georgia. He graduated in 1922. Kartvelishvili did not return to his country, which had fallen to the Red Army in the Soviet-Georgian War. He worked for Blériot Aéronautique S.A. until 1928, when he was employed by the Fokker American Company (also known as Atlantic Aircraft, or Atlantic-Fokker) which was headquartered at Passaic, New Jersey, in the United States. In 1931, he became chief engineer for the Seversky Aircraft Company in Farmingdale.
Republic XP-47B Thunderbolt prototype 40-3051 at Farmingdale, New York, 1941. The pilot standing in front of the airplane gives a scale reference. (Republic Aviation Corporation)
The XP-47B was the largest single-engine fighter that had yet been built. The production P-47B was 34 feet, 10 inches (10.617 meters) long with a wingspan of 40 feet, 9-5/16 inches (12.429 meters), and height of 12 feet, 8 inches (3.861 meters).¹ The wing area was 300 square feet (27.9 square meters). At a gross weight of 12,086 pounds (5,482 kilograms), it was nearly twice as heavy as any of its contemporaries.
Republic XP-47B Thunderbolt 40-3051 at Wright Field, Dayton, Ohio.(Ray Wagner Collection, San Diego Air & Space Museum Archives )
The XP-47B was powered by an air-cooled, supercharged and turbocharged, 2,804.4-cubic-inch-displacement (45.956 liter) Pratt & Whitney R-2800-21 (Double Wasp TSB1-G) two-row, 18-cylinder radial with a compression ratio of 6.65:1 had a normal power rating of 1,625 horsepower at 2,550 r.p.m., to an altitude of 25,000 feet (7,620 meters), and a takeoff/military power rating of 2,000 horsepower at 2,700 r.p.m. at 25,000 feet (7,620 meters). The engine drove a 12-foot, 2 inch (3.708 meter) diameter, four-bladed Curtiss Electric constant-speed propeller through a 2:1 gear reduction. The R-2800-21 was 4 feet, 4.50 inches (1.340 meters) in diameter and 6 feet, 3.72 inches (1.923 meters) long. The engine weighed 2,265 pounds (1,027 kilograms). Approximately 80% of these engines were produced by the Ford Motor Company. It was also used as a commercial aircraft engine, with optional propeller gear reduction ratios.
A large General Electric turbosupercharger was mounted in the rear of the fuselage. Internal ducts carried exhaust gases from the engine to drive the turbocharger. This supercharged air was then carried forward through an intercooler and then on to the carburetor to supply the engine. The engine’s mechanical supercharger further pressurized the air-fuel charge.
Republic XP-47B 40-3051. The pilot enters the cockpit through a hinged canopy segment. (Ray Wagner Collection Catalog, San Diego Air and Space Museum)
During flight testing, the XP-47B Thunderbolt demonstrated speeds of 344.5 miles per hour (554.4 kilometers per hour) at 5,425 feet (1,654 meters), and 382 miles per hour (615 kilometers per hour) at 15,600 feet (4,745 meters). Its maximum speed was 412 miles per hour (663 kilometers per hour) at 25,800 feet (7,864 meters). The test pilot reported that the engine was unable to produce full power during these tests. It was determined that it had a cracked cylinder head, resulting in a loss of 2.5–4% of its maximum rated power. Also, the XP-47B was painted in camouflage, resulting in a slight loss of speed.
It could climb to 15,000 feet (4,572 meters) in just five minutes.
The Thunderbolt was armed with eight Browning AN-M2 .50-caliber machine guns, four in each wing, with 3,400 rounds of ammunition. It could also carry external fuel tanks, rockets and bombs. The structure of the P-47 could be described as “robust” and it was heavily armored. The amount of damage that the airplane could absorb and still return was remarkable.
Republic XP-47B Thunderbolt 40-3051, 4 May 1941. (Republic Aviation Corporation)
During a test flight, 4 August 1942, the XP-47B’s tail wheel was left down. The extreme heat of the turbocharger’s exhaust set fire to the tire, which then spread to the airplane’s fabric-covered control surfaces. Unable to control the airplane, test pilot Filmore L. Gilmer bailed out. The prototype Thunderbolt crashed into Long Island Sound and was destroyed.
The third production Republic P-47B Thunderbolt, 41-5897, at Langley Field, Virginia, 24 March 1942. The door-hinged canopy of the XP-47B has been replaced by a rearward-sliding canopy, requiring that the radio antenna mast be moved.(NASA) A Republic P-47B Thunderbolt in the NACA Full Scale Tunnel, 31 July 1942. (NASA LMAL 29051)
A total of 15,683 Thunderbolts were built more than any other Allied fighter type. In aerial combat, it had a kill-to-loss ratio of 4.6:1. The P-47, though, really made its name as a ground attack fighter, destroying aircraft, locomotives, rail cars, and tanks by the many thousands. It was one of the most successful aircraft of World War II.
¹ Data from Pilot’s Flight Operating Instructions, Technical Order No. 01-65BC-1, 20 January 1943
P-47D at war
The P-47D, as the first really satisfactory version of the Thunderbolt and the most heavily produced variant by far, bore the brunt of the Jug's combat service.
By 1944, the Thunderbolt was in combat with the USAAF in all its operational theaters, except Alaska. With increases in fuel capacity as the type was refined, the range of escort missions over Europe steadily increased until the P-47 was able to accompany bombers in raids all the way into Germany itself.
On the way back from raids, pilots shot up targets of opportunity, which led to the realization that the Jug made an excellent fighter-bomber. Even with its complicated turbosupercharger system, it could absorb a lot of damage, and its eight machine guns meant it could cause a lot of damage as well.
Gradually, the P-47 became the USAAF's best fighter-bomber, carrying 225 kilogram (500 lb) bombs, the triple-tube M-8 115 mm (4.5 in) rocket launcher, and eventually HVARs. In this role, it destroyed thousands of tanks, locomotives, and parked aircraft, and tens of thousands of trucks and other vehicles.
Although the P-51 Mustang eventually replaced the P-47 in the escort role, the Thunderbolt still ended the war with impressive scores in air combat. Lieutenant Colonel Francis S. "Gabby" Gabreski scored 31 kills, Captain Robert S. "Bob" Johnson scored 28, and Colonel H. "Pop" Zemke scored 20. It is a tribute to the aircraft's ruggedness that all but one of the ten top-scoring Thunderbolt aces survived the war. Even in the Pacific, where the P-47 might have been considered a poor match for the nimble Zero and other first-line Japanese fighters (especially at the lower altitudes at which much of the dogfighting occurred in that theater), the P-47D proved it could more than hold its own in the capable hands of such pilots as Col.Neel Kearby of the 5th Air Force. Before he was shot down and killed over Wiak in March of 1944, Kearby destroyed 24 Japanese planes, and won the Congressional Medal of Honor for an action in which he downed six enemy fighters on a single mission.
P-47s were operated by several other Allied air arms during World War II. The RAF began to receive the type during mid-1944, and received 240 razorback P-47Ds, which they designated "Thunderbolt Mark I", and 590 bubbletop P-47Ds, which they designated "Thunderbolt Mark II".
Except for a few evaluation aircraft, these were all operated by the RAF from India for ground-attack operations, known as "cab rank" sorties, against the Japanese in Burma. They were armed with 225 kilogram (500 lb) bombs, or in some cases the British "60 pounder" (27 kg) rocket projectiles. The Thunderbolts remained in RAF service for a short time after the war, the last of them being phased out of service in October 1946.
The Brazilian Expeditionary Force received 88 P-47Ds, and flew them in combat during the Italian campaign. Mexico received 25 for operations against Japan, but the war ended before they could see combat. The Free French received 446 P-47Ds in the last year of the war in Europe, and these aircraft would see action in the 1950s during the insurrection in Algeria.
203 P-47Ds were also provided to the Soviet Union. There was a certain irony in sending aircraft, designed by a Georgian who had fled the Communists, to the Soviets. Reactions of Soviet pilots, who were used to relatively small and nimble fighters, to the oversized Juggernaut are an interesting matter of speculation, but details of the Thunderbolt in Soviet service are unclear.
Republic P-47 Thunderbolt
Nicknamed the 'Jug' the P-47 Thunderbolt entered service with the United States Army Air Force in May 1942 and would later be able to escort bombers all the way to Germany. It was used by a number of air forces, including the Royal Air Force who used the Republic P-47 Thunderbolt in the ground attack role in the Far East.
The development of the P-47 began in 1939 with the 1,150-hp Allison V-1710-39 powered XP-47 fitted with two 0.50-in machine-guns. November 1939 saw the United States Army Air Corps contract Republic to build a prototype XP-47 and also a prototype XP-47A. With the outbreak of the Second World War (1939 – 1945) and the war in Europe intensifying during 1940 reports of the air combat taking place showed that the XP-47 and XP-47A would be vulnerable. This was due to their poor armament, lack of self sealing fuel tanks and lack of heavy armour. As a result both prototypes were cancelled as they were being built.
The design team at Republic, lead by Alexander Kartveli, went back to the drawing board and proposed a new aircraft powered by the turbocharged 2,000-hp Pratt & Whitney R-2800 Double Wasp engine. A contract to build a prototype XP-47B, as this new aircraft was known, was issued on the 6th September 1940 by the USAAC. The 6th May 1941 saw the prototype make its maiden flight. The following year on the 8th August 1942 the XP-47B crashed but by this time the first production versions of the 773 which had been ordered were already beginning to enter service.
The production P-47B had a top speed of 429 mph, range of 835 miles and a service ceiling of 42,000 ft. Armament consisted of eight 0.50-in machine-guns. These entered service on the 26th May 1942 when the 63rd Fighter Squadron received the first deliveries. The P-47C was the next Thunderbolt variant and this featured a few modifications over its predecessor. This included the ability for the P-47 to carry external fuel tanks, this gave the aircraft the range to operate over Germany. The P-47C's range, service ceiling and armament were the same as the P-47Bs, however it had a slightly increased top speed of 433 mph.
The P-47D was the next in line, its top speed was the same as its predecessor, it had a range of 800 miles and a service ceiling of 43,000 ft. Armament was eight 0.50-in machine-guns and either 2,500lb bombs or ten 5-in rocket projectiles. Despite increasing their factory at Farmingdale, New York Republic were unable to keep up with demand. This lead to a new factory being built at Evansville, Indiana. Curtiss-Wright would also build the P-47 at their factory in Buffalo, New York and P-47s built by Curtiss-Wright were given the designation P-47G. The P-47D entered service during 1943.
Up until now the P-47 had a “razorback” design but during July 1943 one P-47D was tested with the same bubble canopy that was fitted to the Hawker Typhoon under the designation XP-47K. This gave improved rear vision as did the flatter rear fuselage needed to allow the new canopy to be installed. As a result all future production P-47s would feature the new canopy and fuselage design.
The Royal Air Force also used the P-47D in the Far East and these were known as Thunderbolt Mk Is, “Razorback” P-47Ds, and Thunderbolt Mk IIs, bubble canopy P-47Ds. With the addition of three 500lb bombs they were used as fighter-bombers and would go on to equip at least sixteen squadrons.
A number of development P-47s followed but none went past the prototype stage. One of the most notable was the XP-47J powered by the 2,100-hp Pratt & Whitney R-2800-61 engine, this had six 0.50-in machine-guns instead of the usual eight. This would make its first flight on the 26th November 1943, when in level flight it reached a speed of over 500 mph it became the first piston engined aircraft to do so. In the end an XP-72 project was favoured over the XP-47J.
The P-47M and P-47N were the last two variants to go into production. The P-47M was heavily based on the P-47D and was powered by a 2,800-hp Pratt & Whitney R-2800-57 engine giving the aircraft a top speed of 475 mph, range of 530 miles and a service ceiling of 41,000 ft. Armament was either six or eight 0.50-in machine-guns. This was the fastest P-47 variant and was developed to help combat the new German jet and rocket fighters entering service and the V-1 flying bomb, which was nicknamed the doodlebug.
So the P-47N would be the last of the Thunderbolts built. Powered by the same 2,800-hp Pratt & Whitney R-2800-57 engine as its predecessor the P-47N had a top speed of 467 mph, range of 800 miles and a service ceiling of 40,000 ft. Armament was either six or eight 0.50-in machine-guns and either 2,000lb bombs or ten 5-in rocket projectiles. With the addition of external fuel tanks the P-47N would be able to escort the Boeing B-29 Superfortress squadrons in the Pacific.
The Republic P-47 Thunderbolt would be used by a number of air forces worldwide. These included the Free French, Italian Air Force and Brazilian Air Force. In total 15,677 P-47 Thunderbolts were built and the P-47D and P-47N, later F-47D and F-47N, would eventually be retired by the American Air National Guard in 1955.
P-47s of the 78th Fighter Group at Duxford, 1944
P-47 D [ edit | edit source ]
Affectionately dubbed “The Jug,” Republic’s P-47 D Thunderbolt was a swift, multi-role fighter that was as much of a menace to ground targets as it was enemy aircraft. Its rugged airframe, armored cockpit and eight .50-caliber machine guns allowed its pilots to fly into the teeth of heavy fire, devastate a ground target and still make it home despite significant damage.
Watch the video: Discovery Channel Great Planes Republic P 47 Thunderbolt