Boeing B-29

The B-29 was the first effective long distance bomber in the world en was designed from 1940 as model 345 to fill the need of the US Army Air Corps plan for a ‘hemisphere defense’ bomber.

The design was extremely advanced with a pressurized cabin, remote controlled defense weapons, an enormous offensive bomb load and very high performance under which a very high service ceiling.

The first of three prototypes flew in September 1942 with four Wright R-3550 ‘star-engines’ each equipped with a turbo charger. In the same time Boeing had contracts for more than 1500 production bombers.

The XB-29‘s were followed by 14 YB-29 pre-production airframes; the first of these 14 flew in June 1943.

A huge effort was made to get the super fortresses in use, and a much extended network of subcontractors supplied parts to four assembly-plants. The type became operational in time to be used in the Second World War, and play a very important role in the campaigns against Japan which ended in August 1945 with the drop of two atomic bombs at Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Approx 2848 B-29‘s were completed with 1122 B-29A‘s that had a slightly lager wing-span and modernized defensive weaponry and 311 B-29B‘s without defensive weapons, but with a radar guided tail barbette. Later this type was redesigned for recon an experimental tasks and was later refitted with a heavier construction and Pratt & Whitney R-4360 engines as the B-29D which came in production as the B-50A.

 

Boeing B-29A Super fortress
Developing Nation: United States
First Flight(s): September 1942
Crew: 10
Wing Span: 43,05 m
Wing: 161,56 m²
Length: 30,18 m
Weight empty: 32.369 kg.
Weight Max. Load: 62.823 kg.
Engine (s): four 1640 kW Wright R-3350-23 Cyclone Eighteen radial engines, air cooled.
Max. Speed: 576 Kph. at sea-level
Max. Height: 9708 m.
Max. Range: 6598 km.
Weapons: – one 20 mm. canon- twelve 12,7 mm machineguns
– Max. 9072 kg. bombs.

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