The Douglas EC-47N was an advanced electronic warfare version of the standard C-47A, developed in the mid 1960s for use in Vietnam.
The EC-47N bristled with antennas of all types. The short radome in the nose carried weather detection radar. Up to six wire antennas for System Y and Q ran from each side of the tail to a series of antenna stubs around the front of the upper fuselage. Eight whip aerials were provided for System X, mounted in pairs above and below the front and rear of the fuselage and the outer wing panels. Marker beacon and TACAN aerials were carried below the nose, a VOR antenna above the crew cabin, a direction fighting aerial was mounted just below and behind the wing centre, a UHF aerial was mounted above the crew cabin, and another antenna trailed behind the tail.
Inside the aircraft were the four electronic warfare consoles for Systems X, Y, Z-1/Q-1 and Z-2/Q-2, each listening in to a different part of the North Vietnamese or Viet Cong radio and radar networks.
The designation EC-47N was given to those electronic warfare aircraft powered by the same Pratt & Whitney R-1830-92 engine as the C-47A. Similar aircraft were also produced from the R-1830-90D powered C-47D, with the designation EC-47P, while aircraft re-engined to use the R-2000-4 engine were designated as EC-47Qs.
The first EC-47Ns moved to South Vietnam during the 1965 build-up, and were used by the 460th Tactical Reconnaissance Wing based at Tan Son Nhit, near Saigon. They spent most of their time operating in small detachments around the country, and were also used by the Vietnamese, Laotian and Cambodian Air Forces.
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