Northrop XA-16

The Northrop XA-16 was the designation given to the XA-13 after it was given a different engine in an attempt to imrpove visibility. On 24 December 1934 the US Army Air Corps placed an order for 110 of these aircraft, based on the Northrop Gamma, but the Wright SR-1820-F2 engine used in the XA-13 was felt to be too big, blocking off the pilots view.

In January 1935 the XA-13 was returned to Northrop, and was given a 950hp Pratt & Whitney R-1830-7 fourteen-cylinder radial, which with a smaller diameter gave the pilot a better view. With the new engine came the designation XA-16. The first flight of the XA-16 was made in March 1935, and it soon realised that the new engine was too powerful for the aircraft. The production A-17 would use a 750hp Pratt & Whitney R-1535-11 radial engine.

The XA-16 was later given a R-1830-9 engine, and used at the aircraft mechanic’s school at Roosevelt Field, London Island.

Suggested Reading
McDonnell Douglas: v.1, Rene J. Francillon (
McDonnell Douglas: v.1, Rene J. Francillon (

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (6 October 2008), Northrop XA-16 ,

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