Douglas C-132

The Douglas C-132 was a design for a two-deck turboprop powered transport aircraft that never got beyond the mock-up stage.

The C-132 had a high mounted swept wing (the first swept wing on a C type cargo aircraft, with four turboprop engines carried in nacelles that jutted some way out in front of the wings. The wings sloped down towards the tips. It had tricycle landing gear, with multiple main wheels, carried on the sides of the fuselage just behind the wings.

It was a two decked aircraft (as was the more successful Douglas C-124 Globemaster II). The fuselage had an almost triangular cross section, with a wide lower cargo deck and a narrower upper passenger deck and cockpit. There was a loading ramp below the tail to give easy access to the cargo deck. There was also a forward cargo door at truck bed height, to make it easier to load the aircraft from the back of a truck. It had a pressurised flight compartment, air conditioned flight and cargo compartments, and an airline style evacuation chute to allow the passengers to escape from the top deck in an emergency.

To test the engine one was installed in the nose of a C-124C. A fully worked out design was submitted in February 1954, for an aircraft that could serve either as a cargo aircraft or as a tanker. A full scale mock-up was completed, but the project was cancelled in 1956.

Although the C-132 would have been an impressive aircraft, the jet powered Boeing C-135 Stratolifter was already under development by 1952, when the mock-up of the C-132 was completed, and would make its maiden flight in 1954. It offered a significantly higher cruising speed, and was seen as a more modern design. The C-132 thus never progressed beyond the mockup stage, while the C-135 went on to be a mainstay of the USAF for many decades.

Engines: Four Pratt & Whtiney TY57-P-1
Power: 11,000shp each at normal, 13,500shp each at military setting, 14,000shp for take off
Crew: 4 (pilot, co-pilot, navigator, systems engineer).
Wing span: 177ft 6in
Length: 179ft 3in
Height: 57ft 11in
Empty weight: 170,300lb
Loaded weight: 408,000lb
Cruising speed: 400mph
Maximum payload: 100,000lb
Maximum range: 3,400 miles

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (17 January 2018), Douglas C-132 , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_douglas_C-132.html

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