Model 18 Lodestar
Medium Transport Aircraft
The Lockheed Model 18 Lodestar, a twin-engined, 18-seat civilian or military passenger or transport aircraft, was a heavily modified version of the Model-14-H2 Super Electra. First flight on September 21, 1939.
Compared to the Super Electra, the Model 18 had a 1.7 m longer fuselage, was able to accommodate up to 18 people in a military transport version and was operated by a crew of three. With a more powerful propulsion system, see the table, the aircraft reached a maximum speed of 428 km / h at an altitude of 5230 m. At a lower cruising speed, the aircraft had a greater practical range of 4025 km.
The US Department of War first showed interest in the Model 18 Lodestar in 1940, when the US Navy ordered three command transport aircraft. Soon a similar delivery was made for the Coast Guard Corps.
Depending on the engines used and the main purpose, Model 18 was produced and used under various designations (C-56, C-57, C-60 with various letter indices, R50). These aircraft were followed by 12 examples in the R 50-4 modification, 41 in the R50-5 modification and 35 in the R50-6 modification. The last three models were, respectively, 4, 7-seater command aircraft, 14 passenger and 18 seater transports, used by the Marine Corps as an amphibious aircraft.