May 172012
Higgins-Bellanca Cargo Model 39-60 (1944)

This article reproduces the original specification document for the Higgins-Bellanca Cargo Model 39-60 of 1944, an enormous transport aircraft designed for the USAAC which combined an elegant blended wing-fuselage with a twin boom tail assembly. According to various sources, this project began in 1941 and was also referred to as the “HC-57,” with the HC […]

Dec 272011
Lockheed XR6O-1 Constitution Development Story

The gallery above reproduces the “Lockheed Constitution Development Story,” a publication from December 1950 summarizing the design and development of the Lockheed XR6O-1 Constitution, a huge aircraft initiated in 1942 by Lockheed as a long-range, high capacity transport and airliner for Pan American Airways and the U.S. Navy. Only two Constitutions were ultimately built, both serving […]

Nov 302011
Verticraft Tri-Service VTOL Prototype Transport Aircraft

The Verticraft Verticar was a little known VTOL aircraft design belatedly submitted to the Navy in connection with the Tri-Service Assault Transport competition of 1961. This competition was born of a common requirement by the United States Army, Navy and Air Force for a V/STOL aircraft that could augment helicopters in transport-type missions, specifically a […]

Oct 122011
General Airborne Transport XCG-16 Military Transport / Assault Glider (Part 2)

In our first post on the General Airborne Transport XCG-16 military transport/assault glider, we presented a preliminary test report from November 14, 1944 evaluating this unusual lifting fuselage design. This post presents additional photos of the XCG-16 taken both before and after those previously published. The first 14 photos in the gallery above date from […]

Oct 052011
General Airborne Transport XCG-16 Military Transport / Assault Glider (Part 1)

The gallery above reproduces an Army Air Force preliminary test report from November 14, 1944 on the General Airborne Transport XCG-16 cargo glider, a 42-place (including pilot and co-pilot) cargo glider capable of carrying a 10,000 lb useful load. It was a flying wing type with twin booms and a single rudder, incorporating two cargo […]

Sep 132011
Lee-Wendt "Amphibion" Flying Boat Studies (1937-8)

The US Navy received many unsolicited aircraft proposals during the 1930’s, a time when defense dollars were scarce and aircraft manufacturers were especially desperate to land contracts. One of the more interesting proposals from this era is the Lee-Wendt “Amphibion” Model WA-22, a handsome design for a high wing monoplane amphibian from 1938 that featured […]

Aug 092011
Consolidated PB2Y-3 Coronado with Integral JATO Motors (1944)

The image gallery above reproduces a report by Consolidated Aircraft Company dated February 15, 1944 summarizing the findings of a series of take-off tests made on a production PB2Y-3 Coronado airplane fitted with special “jet” propulsion motor equipment for assisted take-off. (These were not jets in the modern sense but small rocket motors). The jet motor units, of […]

Jul 152011
Bell VTOL Aircraft Projects of October 1955

The document featured in the image gallery above was submitted by Bell Aircraft Corporation to the Navy Bureau of Aeronautics (BuAer) in 1955 in connection with the company’s efforts to land a contract for a VTOL fighter, which it ultimately did with its D188/D188A designs of late 1956. Titled simply as “VTOL: Vertical Take Off […]

May 122011
Douglas Model 1875 Aircraft Nuclear Propulsion Logistic Carrier (1955)

In April 1955, Douglas drafted these unorthodox transport aircraft studies under the Model 1875 designation for the Aircraft Nuclear Propulsion (ANP) project, a joint effort between the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) and USAF which began in May 1951. ANP was the successor program to the Nuclear Energy for Propulsion of Aircraft (NEPA) project initiated in […]