Second World War Articles from 2010

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Articles from 2010

29 December 2010

No.154 Squadron was a fighter squadron that had two incarnations during the Second World War, first serving in the UK briefly late in 1942 before moving to the Mediterranean and second providing bomber escorts from the UK.

No.155 Squadron was a fighter squadron that served in India and over Burma, performing reconnaissance, ground attack and bomber escort missions.

No.156 Squadron was a bomber squadron that was a founder member of the Pathfinder Force, serving with it from August 1942 until the end of the war.

28 December 2010

No.146 Squadron served as a defensive fighter and ground attack squadron in India and over Burma

No.152 'Hyderabad' Squadron was a fighter squadron that took part in the Battle of Britain, and the campaigns in North Africa, Sicily and Italy, before ending the war as a fighter bomber squadron operating over Burma.

No.153 Squadron had two incarnations during the Second World War, first as a night fighter squadron which served both at home and in the Mediterranean, and then as a Lancaster squadron in Bomber Command.

27 December 2010

No.141 Squadron began the war as a day-fighter squadron equipped with the two-seat Defiant turret fighter, but after a costly first contact with the Germans became a night fighter squadron, ending the war with Bomber Command's No.100 Group.

No.143 Squadron was part of Coastal Command, and formed part of the first 'Strike Wing' at Coates, as well as the Banff strike wing in Scotland

No.145 Squadron was a fighter squadron that fought in the Battle of Britain and the cross-channel sweeps of 1941 before moving to the Mediterranean, where it took part in the campaigns in North Africa, Sicily and Italy, ending the war as a fighter-bomber squadron.

23 December 2010

No.133 Squadron was the third 'Eagle' Squadron, RAF fighter squadrons manned by American volunteers

No.137 Squadron was a fighter-bomber and ground attack squadron that was one of only two squadrons to receive the Westland Whirlwind, before moving on to the Hurricane and finally the Typhoon.

No.140 Squadron was a photo-reconnaissance squadron that was based in the UK for most of the war, before moving to Belgium in September 1944.

22 December 2010

The Polikarpov I-170 was a design for version of the I-153 biplane fighter with a wooden fuselage structure in place of the metal tubing used on the standard aircraft.

The Polikarpov I-190 was the last of Nikolai Polikarpov's biplane fighter designs to take to the air, but only the first prototype was completed and the project was abandoned early in 1941

The Polikarpov I-195 was Nikolai Polikarpov's last design for a biplane fighter, and was to a more powerful version of the I-190.

20 December 2010

No.134 Squadron was formed to take Hurricanes to the Soviet Union to help defend Murmansk, before going on to serve in Northern Ireland, North Africa and Burma.

No.135 Squadron was a fighter squadron that was caught up in the retreat from Burma in 1942 and spent the rest of the war operating on the Burmese front.

No.136 Squadron was a fighter squadron that was on its way to the Far East when the Japanese invaded Burma, and spent much of the war operating over that country.

17 December 2010

No.130 Squadron was a fighter squadron that spent most of the Second World War on offensive duties, including fighter sweeps in 1941-43 and armed reconnaissance over Germany towards the end of the war

No.131 Squadron was a fighter squadron that spent most of the Second World War operating from Britain, flying a mix of defensive and offensive duties, before moving to the Far East where it never began fully operational

No.132 Squadron served as a fighter squadron based in Britain from 1941 until the end of 1944, before moving to the Far East in preparation for the invasion of Malaya

14 December 2010

The Polikarpov I-152 or I-15bis was the second in the series of biplanes that began with the I-15 and ended with the I-153, and in some ways was a step backwards from the earlier aircraft

The Polikarpov I-153 Chaika was the last of Nikolai Polikarpov's biplane fighter aircraft to enter service, and despite being the most advanced entry in the series was already obsolete when it first entered service in 1939

13 December 2010

No.127 Squadron was a fighter squadron that spend much of the Second World War in the Mediterranean before returning to Britain to take part in the D-Day campaign.

No.128 Squadron had two incarnations during the Second World War, first as a fighter squadron in West Africa and then as a night intruder squadron based in Britain.

No.129 Squadron was a fighter squadron that was based in the UK from 1941 until the end of the Second World War, providing bomber escorts, taking part in the D-Day landings and the campaign against the V-1 flying bomb

10 December 2010

No.124 Squadron was a fighter squadron that served as a high-altitude interception unit, before joining Fighter Command to carry out bomber escort duties, ending the war attacking V-2 sites

No.125 Squadron was a night fighter squadron that generally served in a defensive capacity, as well as taking part in the D-Day campaign

No.126 Squadron was a fighter squadron that took part in the defence of Malta in 1941 and 1942, the invasion of Italy in 1943 and the D-Day invasions in 1944.

7 December 2010

No.121 Squadron was the second 'Eagle' squadron, manned by American volunteers

No.122 Squadron was a fighter-bomber squadron that formed part of 2nd Tactical Air Force during the D-Day period, before flying bomber escort missions to the end of the war.

No.123 Squadron served as an army co-operation and fighter squadron in the Middle East in 1942-43, then provided fighter escorts over Burma before ending the war as a fighter-bomber squadron.

6 December 2010

The Polikarpov I-15 was a gull-winged biplane that made its name fighting for the Republican cause in Spain, where it earned its nickname of 'Chato', or 'Snub Nose'.

3 December 2010

No.118 Squadron was a fighter squadron that spent most of its existence flying fighter sweeps and escorting bombers over occupied Europe.

No.119 Squadron had two incarnations during the Second World War, first as flying boat squadron originally formed to operate three Short S.26 class flying boats, and then as a land plane squadron operating against German E-boats.

No.120 Squadron was the first squadron in Coastal Command to receive the Very Long Range Liberator, the aircraft that closed the Atlantic Gap and played a major part in the defeat of the U-boats.

2 December 2010

No.113 Squadron was a bomber and fighter-bomber squadron that served in North Africa and Greece before moving to the Far East to take part in both the unsuccessful defence of Burma and its eventual reconquest.

No.116 Squadron was a support squadron, providing aircraft to help anti-aircraft batteries calibrate their predictors and radar sets.

No.117 Squadron served as a transport squadron in the Middle East, before moving to Burma where it carried out parachute supply drops.

24 November 2010

The Fiat G.55 Centauro (Centaur) was an improved version of the G.50, powered by a licence built DB 605 engine and armed with two machine guns and three 20mm cannon, thus solving most of the problems with the earlier aircraft

The Fiat G.56 was a fighter aircraft that combined the fuselage of the successful G.55 Centauro with a 1,750hp Daimbler Benz DB 603A to produce the fastest Italian fighter aircraft of the Second World War.

23 November 2010

The Fiat G.50 Freccia (Arrow) was the first all-metal monoplane fighter to enter service with the Italian Air Force, but it was underpowered and under-armed compared to its British and German contemporaries

The Fiat G.52 was the designation given to a version of the G.50 Freccia that would have been powered by the Daimler Benz DB 601 engine

18 November 2010

The Fiat CR.41 was a version of the CR.40 that was given a much more powerful Gnome-Rhone Mistral Major 14Ksf engine

The Fiat CR.42 Falco was probably the best biplane fighter aircraft ever produced, but it didn’t make its maiden flight until 1938, by which time it was already verging on obsolescence

16 November 2010

The Fiat CR.32 was a refined version of the CR.30 and was the main Italian fighter aircraft during the second half of the 1930s

The Fiat CR.40 was developed alongside the better known Fiat CR.32, and differed from that aircraft both in its choice of engine and the design of the upper wing.

1 November 2010

The Macchi M.C.205N Orione (Orion) was a major redesign of the M.C.205V, based on the same licence-built DB605 engine, but with a new longer fuselage

The Macchi M.C.206 was a further development of the M.C.205N, with the same long fuselage and licence-built DB605 engine as that aircraft, but with a wider wing span

The Macchi M.C.207 was a more heavily armed version of the M.C.206

30 October 2010

The Macchi M.C.202 Folgore (Thunderbolt) was probably the best Italian fighter aircraft to see service in significant numbers during the Second World War

The Macchi M.C.205V Veltro (Greyhound) was an interim design for a fighter produced by matching the fuselage of the M.C.202 with the Daimler Benz DB 605A engine

26 October 2010

The Macchi M.C.200 Saetta (Lightning) was one of the most important Italian fighter aircraft during the first years of Italian involvement in the Second World War, but was outclassed by its more modern opponents.

The Macchi M.C.201 was the designation given to a single prototype of an improved version of the Macchi M.C.200 Saetta

21 October 2010

The Kawasaki Ki-96 was a single-seat twin-engine fighter based on the Ki-45 Toryu that reached the prototype stage before work moved onto the two-seat Ki-102.

The Kawasaki Ki-102 Army Type 4 Assault Plane was a twin-engined heavy fighter developed from the Ki-45 Toryu via the single-seat Ki-96, and which saw limited service over Okinawa

The Kawasaki Ki-108 was a twin-engined high-altitude fighter based on the Ki-96 and Ki-102 developments of the Ki-45 Toryu

20 October 2010

Operation Sealion was the German plan for an invasion of Britain in the autumn of 1940, and was the reason that the Germans fought the Battle of Britain

15 October 2010

The Kawasaki Ki-60 was a single-engine heavy interceptor powered by the German DB 601A inline engine that reached the prototype stage during 1941 but that was rejected in favour of the lighter Kawasaki Ki-61 Hien

The Kawasaki Ki-64 was a radical design for a high-speed single-seat fighter powered by two engines both mounted in the main fuselage

7 October 2010

The Kawasaki Ki-48 Army Type 99 Twin-engined Light Bomber (Lily) was a fast but under-armed light bomber that performed well over China in 1940 but proved to be vulnerable when faced with more modern Allied fighters.

The Kawasaki Ki-174 was an obscure version of the Ki-48 twin-engine light bomber, probably designed as a single-seat suicide aircraft

6 October 2010

The Arado Ar 296 was a design for an improved version of the Arado Ar 96B advanced trainer, to be powered by the Argus As 411 inverted inline engine in place of the similar but less powerful Argus As 410

The Arado Ar 396 was a training aircraft developed from the successful Arado Ar 96B, but using as little metal as possible in its construction. Despite its name the Ar 396 was developed in France, and none reached the Luftwaffe

5 October 2010

The Kawasaki Ki-3 Army Type 93 Light Bomber was one of the last biplane types to replaced by the Japanese Army, remaining in front-line service until 1938

The Kawasaki Ki-81 was a heavily armed escort fighter based on the Ki-48 Sokei light bomber

4 October 2010

The Arado Ar 67 was a single-seat fighter produced in 1933 and powered by a Rolls Royce Kestral engine

The Arado Ar 96 was the Luftwaffe's standard advanced trainer, and was a two-seat low-wing all-metal monoplane that first flew in 1938

30 September 2010

The Arado Ar 65 was the first front-line fighter to equip the fighter-squadrons of the Luftwaffe after Hitler's rise to power, although it was developed in the last years of the Weimar Republic

The Arado Ar 66 was a two-seat biplane trainer that became the Luftwaffe's most numerous primary training aircraft

27 September 2010

The Blohm und Voss Bv 142 was a land-plane version of the Ha 139 float seaplane, also designed as a trans-Atlantic mail plane, and that was also taken into Luftwaffe service

The Blohm und Voss Bv 222 Wiking was the largest flying boat to reach operational status during the Second World War, although it was produced in tiny numbers, and indeed never really reached full production status

22 September 2010

The Blohm und Voss Bv 138 was a three-engined long-range reconnaissance flying boat that was the most numerous of their own aircraft produced by Blohm und Voss.

The Blohm und Voss Bv 139 was the designation given to three four-engined flying boats produced as mail planes for Lufthansa, but that served with the Luftwaffe during the Second World War

21 September 2010

The Focke-Wulf Ta 211 was the original designation given to the Ta 154 twin-engined fighter, at a time when it was being developed as a high-speed bomber.

The Focke-Wulf Ta 154 Moskito was a twin-engined night fighter of wooden construction that was cancelled soon after entering production, partly because of problems with the glue holding it together

17 September 2010

The Arado Ar 198 was a short-range reconnaissance aircraft designed to the same specifications as the Fw 189 but that never progressed beyond the prototype stage.

The Focke-Wulf Fw 58 Weihe (Kite) was a twin-engined aircraft that was used as a light transport, air-ambulance and navigational trainer by the Luftwaffe

The Focke-Wulf Fw 189 'Uhu' (Eagle Owl) was the most successful German short-range reconnaissance aircraft of the Second World War, entering service in time to take part in the invasion of the Soviet Union and remaining in use in its main role well into 1944

16 September 2010

The Blohm und Voss Bv 141 was an asymmetric reconnaissance aircraft designed in response to the same specification that led to the Focke-Wulf 189

The Blohm und Voss Bv 237 was a design for an asymmetric dive-bomber largely based on the earlier Bv 141 reconnaissance aircraft.

15 September 2010

HMS Striker was an Attacker class escort carrier that took part in operations off the Norwegian coast during 1944, as well as playing a part in the D-Day landings and escorting convoys to Russia

HMS Tracker was an Attacker class escort carrier that was one of the few members of her class to be used extensively on convoy escort duties, before spending the first part of 1945 acting as a ferry carrier for the US Navy

2 September 2010

The Focke-Wulf Fw 56 Stösser (Falcon) was an advanced training aircraft that was used at German fighter pilot schools throughout the Second World War.

The Focke-Wulf Fw 57 was a twin-engined heavy fighter that never developed beyond the prototype stage, although it did make its maiden flight in 1936

The Focke-Wulf Fw 187 Falke (Falcon) was a high performance twin-engined fighter that was developed in single and two seat versions, but that never attracted the support of the German air ministry, and didn't enter production

31 August 2010

HMS Searcher was an Attacker class escort carrier that spent most of her carrier operating off the Norwegian coast, although she also took part in the invasion of southern France and the liberation of Greece

HMS Stalker was an Attacker class escort carrier that took part in the Salerno landings in 1943, the invasion of the south of France and the liberation of Greece in 1944 and the liberations of Penang, Rangoon and Malaya during 1945.

30 August 2010

The Focke-Wulf Fw 44 'Stieglitz' (Goldfinch) was a sports and primary training aircraft that helped establish Focke-Wulf as a major aircraft manufacturer

The Focke-Wulf Fw 191 was a medium bomber designed in response to the German Air Ministry's 'Bomber B' specification of 1939, but that was let down by the failure of the engines it was designed to use and that never entered production.

26 August 2010

HMS Pursuer was an Attacker class escort carrier that served on convoy escort duty as well as taking part in the April 1944 attack on Tirpitz, the D-Day landings, the liberations of the south of France and of Greece, before ending the war with the East Indies Fleet

HMS Ravager was an Attacker class escort carrier that was used for deck landing training for most of its service career

25 August 2010

HMS Fencer was an Attacker class escort carrier that served with the Home Fleet in 1944, sinking three U-boats at the start of May, before joining the British Pacific Fleet as a ferry carrier during 1945

HMS Hunter was an Attacker class escort carrier that took part in the Salerno landings in 1943 and Operation Dragoon and the liberation of Greece in 1944 before joining the East Indies Fleet in 1945

24 August 2010

HMS Attacker was the name ship for the Attacker class of escort carriers. She took part in the landings at Salerno in 1943 and in the south of France and Greece in 1944, before moving to the Far East in time to take part in the liberation of Penang and the re-occupation of Singapore

HMS Battler was an Attacker class escort carrier that served on convoy escort duty between Britain and Africa in 1943, took part in the Salerno landings, and spent 1944 operating with the Eastern Fleet then the East Indies Fleet, before becoming a deck landing training carrier in 1945

20 August 2010

The Grumman TBF/ TBM Avenger was the US Navy's only front line torpedo bomber from the late summer of 1942 until the end of the Second World War, and was a sturdy robust aircraft that accounted for a large part of the Japanese fleet, as well as serving as the British Fleet Air Arm's main torpedo bomber in the later years of the war.

The Grumman TBF/ TBM Avenger was the only torpedo bomber used by the US Navy from the summer of 1942 until the end of the Second World War, although it served as a conventional level bomber more often than as a torpedo bomber

The Grumman Avenger was the most important attack aircraft in use with the Fleet Air Arm during the last eighteen months of the Second World War, making its main contribution to the war effort in the Far East, although it was also used in significant numbers over Home Waters and off Norway

The Grumman XTBF-2 Avenger was a single prototype for a version of the aircraft powered by the 1,900hp Wright R-2600-10 engine.

The Avenger Mk.I was the British designation for the Grumman TBF-1 and Eastern TBM-1 from January 1944, replacing the earlier Tarpon I

The Avenger Mk.II was the British designation for the Grumman TBF-1C and Eastern TBM-1C from January 1944, replacing the earlier Tarpon II.

The Avenger Mk.III was the British designation for the Eastern TBM-3 and TBM-3E from January 1944, replacing the earlier Tarpon III

Today we also add an illustrated look at the uniforms and infantry weapons of the German army during the Second World War

18 August 2010

The Grumman TBF-1 Avenger was the first production version of the aircraft, and the only one to be built by Grumman.

The Eastern TBM-1 Avenger was the first version of that aircraft produced by the Eastern Aircraft Division of General Motors, and was produced in larger numbers than the Grumman TBF-1.

The Eastern TBM-3 Avenger was the second major version of the Avenger torpedo bomber to enter production, and had a more powerful engine than the earlier TBF-1/ TBM-1

The Eastern TBM-3E Avenger was the last major wartime production version of the aircraft, and was significantly lighter than the -3E, giving it the same performance as the original TBF-1.

The Eastern TBM-3S Avenger was an anti-submarine warfare aircraft produced after the Second World War and that was normally paired with the TBM-3W early warning radar aircraft in hunter-killer anti-submarine teams

The Eastern TBM-3W Avenger was an airborne early warning radar aircraft developed during the Second World War but that only entered service in May 1946.

The Eastern XTBM-4 Avenger was the designation given to three prototypes of an improved version of the Avenger that were produced in 1945

The Grumman Tarpon was the designation originally given to the TBF/ TBM Avenger in British service

The Avenger AS Mk.4 was the British designation given a version of the TBM-3S anti-submarine warfare aircraft that served with the Fleet Air Arm from 1953.

17 August 2010

HMS Furious was laid down as a light battlecruiser during the First World War but achieved most fame as an aircraft carrier during the Second World War, spending much of her time operating in the Mediterranean and off the coast of Norway as well as in the Atlantic and on the Arctic convoys.

The Chance-Vought XTBU-1 Sea Wolf was a torpedo bomber designed as a rival to the Grumman Avenger, and that entered production as the Consolidated TBY-2 Sea Wolf.

The Consolidated TBY-2 Sea Wolf was the production version of the XTBU-1 torpedo bomber developed by Vought at the same time as the Grumman Avenger.

13 August 2010

HMS Queen was a Ruler class escort carrier that spent most of her active career on convoy escort or trooping duties, although she did take part in some active combat off Norway early in 1945.

HMS Rajah was a Ruler class escort carrier that spend most of her active career operating as a ferry carrier under US Navy control

12 August 2010

HMS Nabob was a Ruler class escort carrier that has a short active career in British home waters before being badly damaged by a U-boat during an attack on the Tirpitz in August 1944.

HMS Patroller was a Ruler class escort carrier that saw little active service, being used as a ferry carrier under US Navy control early in 1945 before returning to British control to carry out similar duties.

HMS Premier was a Ruler class escort carrier that served off the Norwegian coast during the first part of 1945, as well as escorting a convoy to Russia and acting as a deck landing training carrier

10 August 2010

HMS Emperor was a Ruler class escort carrier that took part in operations off Norway and in the Mediterranean in 1944 and with the East India Fleet during 1945.

HMS Empress was a Ruler class escort carrier that served in the Far East for most of 1945, operating with the East Indies Fleet.

HMS Khedive was a Ruler class escort carrier that took part in Operation Dragoon and the liberation of Greece during 1944 before joining the East Indies Fleet during 1945

We also open a gallery devoted to the Battle of Britain and another for German Army Equipment of the Second World War

9 August 2010

HMS Puncher was a Ruler class escort carrier that took part in a series of operations off the Norwegian coast early in 1945 before becoming a deck landing training carrier for the rest of the year.

HMS Shah was a Ruler class escort carrier that served in the Far East, spending most of 1944 on anti-submarine patrols and general escort duties, before taking part in several major operations during 1945.

30 July 2010

HMS Ameer was a Ruler class escort carrier that served with the East Indies Fleet from the summer of 1944 until the end of the war, taking part in most major operations during 1945.

HMS Atheling was a Ruler class escort carrier that served alongside HMS Illustrious in the Bay of Bengal for a short period of time in 1944 before being loaned to the US Navy to serve as a ferry carrier in 1945.

HMS Ranee was a Ruler class escort carrier that was loaned back to the US Navy and spent the first half of 1945 ferrying US Naval aircraft to the front line.

HMS Reaper was a Ruler class escort carrier that served on convoy escort duties in the Atlantic and Mediterranean in the second half of 1944 before being loaded to the US Navy to search as a ferry carrier at the start of 1945.

HMS Smiter was a Ruler class escort carrier that saw little service during the Second World War, accompanying a small number of Atlantic convoys in 1944, before sailing to the Far East too late to see any action

28 July 2010

HMS Chaser was an Attacker class escort carrier that had a short but successful career escorting Arctic convoys early in 1944 before serving with the Fleet Train of the British Pacific Fleet in 1945.

HMS Thane was a Ruler class escort carrier that had a short service career, escorting at least two convoys across the Atlantic before being torpedoed and badly damaged by U-482

HMS Trouncer was a Ruler class escort carrier, and one of five members of that class to see significant service in the Atlantic, escorting a number of trans-Atlantic convoys from the summer of 1944.

HMS Trumpeter was a Ruler class escort carrier that saw an unusual level of front-line service, taking part in twelve months of operations off the Norwegian coast between the summers of 1944 and 1945, before moving to the Far East

22 July 2010

The Ruler class of escort carriers were the largest group of aircraft carriers to serve in the Royal Navy during the Second World War

HMS Arbiter was a Ruler class escort carrier that had a short service carrier with the Royal Navy, becoming a replenishment carrier in the British Pacific Fleet in the summer of 1945

HMS Begum was a Ruler class escort carrier that spent most of its career acting as a ferry carrier, apart from six months spent protecting Allied shipping in the Far East in the second half of 1944.

HMS Ruler was the name ship of the Ruler class of escort carriers, built in the United States as the Prince William class and based on a standard merchant ship hull

HMS Slinger was a Ruler class escort carrier that served as a replenishment carrier with the British Pacific Fleet in 1945

HMS Speaker was a Ruler class escort carrier that served with the fleet train of the British Pacific Fleet from March 1945 until VJ Day.

16 July 2010

No.808 Naval Air Squadron was a single-engine fighter squadron that served on the Ark Royal until she was sunk, then helped support the landings at Salerno before joining the East Indian Fleet.

No.809 Naval Air Squadron was a single-engine fighter squadron that served extensively in the Mediterranean and in the Far East, taking part in the invasions of North Africa, Italy and the south of France and the liberation of Rangoon and Malaya

15 July 2010

The Fairey Fulmar was a moderately successful fighter aircraft that served with the Fleet Air Arm from 1940 until 1943, despite suffering from a lack of speed and a poor climb rate, at least when compared to its main opponents

14 July 2010

HMS Ark Royal (1937-1941) was the first purpose built large aircraft carrier to be completed for the Royal Navy, and one of the most famous warships of the Second World War

The Japanese were to use rifles throughout the Second World War which were heavily based on the Ariksaka Model 1905 bolt action rifle which had served them during the First World War.

2 June 2010

Although the Hurricane was not designed as a naval aircraft, the Sea Hurricane served the Fleet Air Arm in three separate roles – shore based, catapult launched and carrier based.

The Sea Hurricane Mk IA was produced in response to the dire situation Britain found herself in by the end of 1940, and was designed to be fired from catapults carried on converted merchant ships in an attempt to provide some air cover for vulnerable convoys

The Hawker Sea Hurricane Mk IB was the first version of the aircraft to be designed for use of aircraft carriers, and was equipped with an arrester hook as well as the catapult spools and naval radio of the Mk IA

The Hawker Sea Hurricane Mk IC was similar to the Mk IB, but was armed with four 20mm cannon in place of the eight .303in machine guns of the earlier aircraft

The Sea Hurricane Mk IIC was the final major version of the aircraft to be produced in Britain, and was a conversion of the standard Hurricane Mk II, with the Rolls-Royce Merlin XX engine and armed with four 20mm cannon

The Hawker Sea Hurricane Mk XII was a naval version of the Canadian built and Packard Merlin powered Hurricane Mk XII

31 May 2010

The Enfield P14 and M1917 family of manually-operated, Mauser-style bolt action rifles originated with the Pattern 1913 Enfield (or P13) that was an experimental rifle developed due to the combat experience of the British Army during the Second Boer War (1899 – 1902)

The Sten machine carbine was a relatively simple piece of kit, being a blowback-operated sub-machinegun, firing from an open bolt with a fixed firing pin on the face of the bolt

5 April 2010

The Fieseler Fi 156 Storch (Stork) is widely considered to have been the best army cooperation aircraft to see large-scale service during the Second World War, serving with the German Army on just about every front, and possessing a very impressive short take-off and landing capability.

The Fieseler Fi 156A was the first production version of the Storch and was a general utility and liaison aircraft that was produced in small numbers

The Fieseler Fi 156B was to have been a civil version of the Storch, equipped with automatic moveable slots on the wing leading edge

The Fieseler Fr 156C was the main production version of the Storch, and initially differed from the A series in having the ability to carry a single aft-firing 7.9mm MG15 machine gun.

The Fieseler Fi 156D was a dedicated air-ambulance version of the Storch, modified to make it easier to load patients on stretchers into the aircraft.

The Fieseler Fi 156E was produced in attempt to solve the problems caused by the small main wheels of the standard Storch

The Fieseler Fi 156F or P (for Police) was a version of the Storch designed for internal security and anti-partisan activities.

The Fieseler Fi 156U was the designation given to an experimental version of the Storch used to test out a number of different payloads

The Siebel Si 201 was a very unconventional aircraft designed as a competitor to the Fieseler Fi 156 Storch

The OKA-38 Aist (Stork) was a Soviet version of the Fieseler Storch, designed by Oleg K. Antonov using a German example as a template

The Kokusai Ki-76 'Stella' was a artillery spotting and liaison aircraft inspired by the Fieseler Fi 156 Storch, but that was designed independently in Japan.

The Mraz K.65 Cap was the designation given to Fieseler Fi 156 Storch aircraft produced in Czechoslovakia after the end of the Second World War

The Morane Saulnier M.S. 500 was the name given to examples of the Fieseler Fi 156 Storch built at Puteaux in France after the end of the Second World War

The Morane Saulnier M.S. 501 was the designation given to post-war Fieseler Storch aircraft built in France and powered by an inline Renault engine

The Morane Saulnier M.S. 502 'Criquet' was the version of the Fieseler Fi 156 produced in largest numbers after the end of the Second World War

1 April 2010

The Fieseler Fi 98 was a dive-bomber designed in response to the same RLM specification as the Henschel Hs 123, but that never progressed beyond the prototype stage.

The Fieseler Fi 167 was a ship-born two-seat torpedo bomber and reconnaissance aircraft designed to serve on the German aircraft carrier Graf Spee

The Fieseler Fi 256 was a five-seat version of the Fi 156 Storch, built in prototype form by Morane Saulnier in France

The Fieseler Fi 333 was a design for a transport aircraft that would have carried its cargo in detachable pods, allowing for a very rapid turn-around on the ground, and for the use of a number of different purpose-built pods to carry cargo, passenger, paratroops or fuel

9 March 2010

The Kawasaki Ki-10 'Perry' was the best biplane fighter to serve with the Imperial Japanese Army, and was a highly manoeuvrable aircraft that had a big influence on the design of later monoplane fighters

The Kawasaki Ki-32 'Mary' was a single-engined light bomber slightly superior to the contemporary Fairey Battle, and that benefited greatly from operating against limited aerial opposition over China during the second Sino-Japanese War

The Kawasaki Ki-45 Toryu (Dragon Slayer) was originally designed as a twin-engined heavy fighter in the same class as the Messerschmitt Bf-110, but saw most service as a ground-attack aircraft and night fighter

The Kawasaki Ki-88 was a design for a fighter aircraft inspired by the Bell P-39 Airacobra, with the engine mounted behind the cockpit

The designation Kawasaki Ki-91 was given to a design for a four-engined heavy bomber under development in Japan between 1943 and 1945

8 March 2010

The Mitsubishi Ki-67 Hiryu (Flying Dragon) 'Peggy' was the best bomber to serve with the Imperial Japanese Army during the Second World War, but arrived too late to make any significant contribution to the Japanese war effort

The Mitsubishi Ki-83 was a long-range escort fighter in the same class as the Grumman F7F Tigercat or de Havilland Hornet, but that never progressed beyond the prototype stage.

The Mitsubishi Ki-95 was to have been a command reconnaissance aircraft based on the Ki-83 twin engined fighter.

The Mitsubishi Ki-103 was an advanced version of the Mitsubishi Ki-83 twin engined fighter which was under development at the end of the Second World War.

The designation Mitsubishi Ki-109 was used for two different attempts to produce an interceptor based on Ki-67 heavy bomber that would be capable of shooting down the new B-29 Superfortress

19 February 2010

The Mitsubishi Ki-30 'Ann' was produced as part of the Japanese Army's modernization programme of the mid 1930s, but although its design contained a number of technical 'firsts' for Japan it was a mediocre aircraft, and suffered heavy losses when it came up against determined resistance.

The Mitsubishi Ki-46 'Dinah' was the Japanese Army's main reconnaissance aircraft of the Second World War, and was one of the most aerodynamically perfect aircraft of its era.

The Mitsubishi Ki-51 'Sonia' was a very successful Japanese ground attack aircraft that remained in service throughout the Second World War.

The Mitsubishi Ki-71 'Edna' was an armed reconnaissance aircraft developed from the successful Ki-51 'Sonia' ground attack aircraft that reached no further than the prototype stage.

12 February 2010

The Mitsubishi Ki-15 'Babs' was the main reconnaissance aircraft in use with the Imperial Japanese Army at the start of the Sino-Japanese War in 1937, and was still in front line service during the Japanese conquests at the start of 1942.

The Mitsubishi C5M was a version of the Ki-15 reconnaissance aircraft built for the Japanese Navy after the Ki-15 proved itself over China.

The Mitsubishi Ki-21 'Sally' was the Japanese Imperial Army's most important heavy bomber during the Sino-Japanese War and for most of the Second World War.

The Mitsubishi MC-21 was a transport aircraft produced by converting surplus Ki-21-Ia bombers that had been withdrawn from front line service

The Mitsubishi Ki-57 was the main personnel transport aircraft used by the Imperial Japanese Army during the Second World War, and was developed from the Ki-21 twin engined heavy bomber.

The Mitsubishi L4M1 was the designation given to a small number of Mitsubishi Ki-57-I transport aircraft that were transferred to the Imperial Japanese Navy

9 February 2010

The Hawker Sea Fury was the most powerful piston engined fighter to serve with the Royal Navy, seeing most service during the Korean War, despite having originally been developed as a light-weight long range fighter intended for RAF service in the war against Japan

The Hawker Sea Fury Mk.X was the first production version of the Sea Fury, and was a short-lived air superiority fighter that was soon replaced by the FB.11 fighter bomber

The Hawker Sea Fury FB.11 was the main production version of the Sea Fury, and was produced after it was decided to use the aircraft as a fighter-bomber rather than as an air superiority fighter

The Hawker Sea Fury T.20 was a two-seat trainer originally developed as a private venture by Hawker, but that was adopted by the Fleet Air Arm

The Hawker Sea Fury TT.20 was a target-tug produced from surplus T.20 trainers for the new Luftwaffe in the late 1950s

31 January 2010

The Fairey Firefly was developed as a two-man naval fighter-reconnaissance aircraft, and saw service as a long range escort and strike aircraft during the Second World War and as a strike aircraft during the Korean War. 

The Fairey Firefly F.1 was a two-seat day fighter that entered Fleet Air Arm service early in 1944, and served as a long range fighter, reconnaissance and strike aircraft

The Fairey Firefly NF.I was the second attempt to develop a night-fighter version of the Firefly, and took advantage of the availability of American radar to improve on the earlier NF.II.

The Fairey Firefly FR.I was the third version of the aircraft to enter service, and saw radar introduced as a standard feature

The Fairey Firefly T.1 was an advanced dual-control trainer produced as a private venture by Fairey, and accepted by the Fleet Air Arm

The Fairey Firefly T.2 was a tactical weapons trainer based on the unarmed Firefly T.1

The Fairey Firefly NF.II was the first attempt to produce a night-fighter version of the aircraft, preceding the more successful NF.I

The Fairey Firefly T.3 was produced to train observers in anti-submarine warfare

The Fairey Firefly F.3 was the first attempt to fit a two-stage supercharged Griffon 61 to the Firefly, but was abandoned after problems with the new engine installation.

The Fairey Firefly FR.4 saw a major redesign of the basic Firefly design, with leading-edge radiators installed to provide cooling for a more powerful Griffon 61 engine

The Fairey Firefly FR.5 was the fighter-reconnaissance version of the multi-purpose Firefly Mk.5, and saw extensive service during the Korean War

The Fairey Firefly NF.5 was the night-fighter version of the multi-purpose Firefly Mk.5.

The Fairey Firefly AS.5 was the anti-submarine version of the multi-purpose Firefly Mk.5, and was equipped with submarine detection gear carried under the wings.

The Fairey Firefly AS.6 was a dedicated anti-submarine version of the aircraft, sacrificing defensive armament for an improved anti-submarine capability.

The Fairey Firefly AS.7 was developed to provide the Fleet Air Arm with a three-seat anti-submarine aircraft while work continued on the Fairey Gannet, but was never used in that role and instead entered service as the Firefly T.7

The Fairey Firefly U.8 was a pilotless target drone based on the Firefly T.7 and used to test a number of early anti-aircraft missiles

The Fairey Firefly U.9 was the designation given to forty Firefly Mk.5s converted to serve as pilotless target drones starting in 1956

After the Second World War a number of Fairey Fireflies were converted into target tugs, serving with the Fleet Air Arm, as well as with Sweden, Denmark, Holland and Australia.

29 January 2010

The Supermarine Seafire was the naval version of the Spitfire, but never shared that aircraft's impressive reputation, instead becoming known as a fragile aircraft not well suited to carrier operations

The Supermarine Seafire Mk.Ib was a version of the Spitfire Mk.V converted to serve as an interim naval fighter before the arrival of a purpose-built Seafire.

The Supermarine Seafire Mk.IIc was the first version of the aircraft to be built from new as a naval fighter, and was developed alongside the Mk.Ib.

The Supermarine Seafire Mk.III was the first version of the aircraft to be produced with folding wings, and was produced in larger numbers than any other version of the Seafire.

The Supermarine Seafire Mk.XV was the first Griffon powered version of the Seafire to be produced, entering service just too late to reach the front line during the Second World War.

The Supermarine Seafire Mk.XVII was an improved version of the Griffon-powered Seafire XV, with the bubble canopy and cut-down rear fuselage adopted for late Seafire XVs combined with a better undercarriage and stronger wings

The Supermarine Seafire F.45 was the first of a series of Seafire variants to be powered by Griffon 60 series engines, and was very much an interim model, lacking folding wings and with an older fuselage design than the Seafire XVII

The Supermarine Seafire F.Mk.46 was the first version of the Griffon-powered Seafire to be truly suitable for service on aircraft carriers, featuring contra-rotating propellers that solved the handling problems caused by the torque problems introduced with the Griffon

The Supermarine Seafire Mk.47 was the final, and best, version of the Seafire, and combined the contra-rotating propellers of the Seafire F.46 with folding wings that made it fully suited for carrier operations.

Updates from: 20142013201220112010200920082007


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