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RF-61 (F-15) "Reporter"

Photo Reconnaissance Aircraft

Northrop

F-15A # 38335 Reporter

RF-61 (F-15) . In July 1944, the development of a long-range high-altitude high-speed reconnaissance aircraft for aerial photo reconnaissance began on the basis of the P-61. The Pratt & Whitney R-2800-65 Double Wasp air-cooled radial twin-row 18 cylinder air-cooled engines were replaced by the more powerful R-2800-C, which, together with a streamlined fuselage nacelle, gave a speed increase of 118 km / h. Up to 6 cameras of various types were installed in the nose cone of the aircraft.

XP-61E, F-15A

The photo reconnaissance aircraft, which received the designation F-15 under the new specification, had a cockpit for two crew members, located in tandem under a large common canopy. The rear workstation also had controls, however, the main job of the rear-seated operator was camera control and navigation. Since both crew members had both flight training and additional training in aerial reconnaissance, duties usually alternated during the flight.

A total of 36 aircraft were built - 9 were transferred to the US Air Force Logistics Command, the remaining 27 were sent by sea to the 8th photo reconnaissance squadron of 71 reconnaissance group (Fukuoka, Japan). Difficulties in maintenance and a lack of spare parts led to the fact that the F-15 rarely took to the skies.

Northrop P-61A-5 RF-61C
Crew 3 2
Dimensions
Wing span, m 20.13 20.12
Wing area, m² 61.77 61.53
Length, m 14.92 15.34
Height, m 4.32
Powerplant
2 × PE radial Pratt Whitney R-2800
-65
R-2800
-C
Power, hp 2 × 2250 2 × 2800
Weight, kg:
Empty weight 9518 9684
Gross weight 14710 16869
Performance
Maximum speed, km/h 590 708
Cruising speed, km/h 421 568
Service ceiling, m 10100 12486
Service range, km 6650 6437
Photo Description
Drawing F-15

Drawing F-15A

F-15

F-15 Test

Bibliography

  • American Warplanes of World War II /under cor. David Donald/
  • "RF-61 (F-15) Northrop" /Air War #56/
Bell Boeing Brewster Consolidated Curtiss Douglas General Motors Grumman Lockheed Martin North American Northrop Republic Vought People & Aircraft Photos & Drawings

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