Return to Index  

Catapult-launched P-61s

May 8 2017 at 8:41 PM
No score for this post
Jacques  (no login)

Response to H Mk VIII catapult


Something in Jim's post of October 14 2009 (wow, seems like yesterday!) caught my eye "...Even two-engine fighters, Lightnings and Black Widows (P-61s), were modified."

Now from what I know P-61s were heavy, if not the heaviest fighters of WW2, weighing in at around 25 000 pounds when empty and I was wondering if any attempts were indeed made to catapult-launch them off carriers.

The answer is to be found on page 112 of "Northrop's Night Fighter - The P-61 Black Widow" by Jeff Kolln. According to the book, two P-61s were loaned to the Navy for testing the feasibility of catapult-delivering the aircraft type to Pacific bases by aircraft carrier. Around 50 test-launches by H2 hydraulic catapults were successfully performed during the latter half of 1944 at NAS Mustin Field, Pennsylvania. Test-launches by catapult off an escort carrier were also successfully conducted, which "certified" the P-61 as a catapult-capable aircraft, although there is no evidence that this method of delivery was ever actually used.



Scoring disabled. You must be logged in to score posts.Respond to this message   
Find more forums on Network54Create your own forum at Network54
 Copyright © 1999-2018 Network54. All rights reserved.   Terms of Use   Privacy Statement