Author Topic: The Flight of The Last B-36 Peacemaker  (Read 1516 times)

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Offline PeteS in CA

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The Flight of The Last B-36 Peacemaker
« on: July 02, 2021, 12:36:48 am »
The Flight of The Last B-36 Peacemaker

On 12 February 1959, the last B-36J “Peacemaker” built, Air Force serial number 52-2827, departed Biggs Air Force Base, Texas, where it had been operational with the 95th Heavy Bombardment Wing. The aircraft was flown to Amon Carter Field in Fort Worth, Texas, where it was put on display. With the retirement of this last operational B-36J, the United States Air Force Strategic Air Command was henceforth equipped with an all-jet bomber force.

The United States Air Force operated several versions of the Convair B-36 “Peacemaker” from 1949 to 1959. Unique in design, size, capability, and configuration, the B-36 is still the largest mass-produced piston-engine aircraft ever built. With a wingspan of 230 feet the B-36 had the longest wingspan of any combat aircraft ever built. With a range of 10,000 miles and a maximum payload of more than 43 tons, B-36 was capable of intercontinental flight without refueling. The B-36 had an unsurpassed cruising altitude for a piston-driven aircraft, over 40,000 feet, made possible by its huge wing area and six 28-cylinder engines. The B-36 “featherweight’ configuration resulted in a top speed of 423 miles per hour at 50,000 feet altitude with the ability to fly at 55,000 feet for short periods.

Until the B-52 became operational, the B-36 was the only means of delivering the first generation Mark-17 hydrogen bomb. The Mark-17 was 25 feet long, 5 feet in diameter, and weighed a whopping 42,000 pounds, making it the heaviest and bulkiest American aerial thermonuclear device ever. Carrying this massive weapon required merging two adjacent bomb bays. The B-36 was the only aircraft designed to carry the T-12 “Cloudmaker,” a gravity bomb weighing 43,600 pounds and designed to produce an earthquake bomb effect. The B-36’s maximum payload was more than four times that of the World War II-developed B-29, and actually exceeded the payload of the B-52. ...
Convair referred to the B-36 as the “aluminum overcast”. While General Curtis LeMay headed Strategic Air Command from 1949 to 1957, he turned the B-36 fleet into an effective nuclear weapon delivery force through intense training and development. The B-36 formed the heart of the Strategic Air Command as its so-called “long rifle.”

“Six turning, four burning”
Beginning with the B-36D, Convair added a total of four General Electric J47-19 jet engines. These were dual-mounted in pods outboard of the piston engines. The existing B-36 fleet was retrofitted to include the jet engines. Thus the classic B-36 slogan of “six turning and four burning” was born. The B-36 had more engines than any other mass-produced aircraft. The jet engines were primarily used during takeoff and for added speed over the target.
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Online Kamaji

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Re: The Flight of The Last B-36 Peacemaker
« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2021, 01:31:50 pm »
Piston engines and jet engines.