The B-52 is the longest serving and most versatile of the United States Air Force's combat aircraft. The Stratofortress entered active service in 1955 and is scheduled to continue as part of the air force's inventory through 2040. The jet-powered bomber was a mainstay of America's Cold War nuclear-deterrent strategy, providing air power that balanced the land and sea military forces. The massive plane also served as the launch platform for the experimental X-15 hypersonic rocket aircraft. Due to its versatility as an aircraft, the B-52 has seen combat service in all of America's military conflicts since it came on active duty: Vietnam, the first and second Gulf wars, and the War in Afghanistan. B-52 Stratofortress also covers every aspect of the aircraft's development, manufacture, and modification. These technical details set the stage for its military service, starting with its role as a nuclear bomber in the Cold War even though only conventional weapons have been used during its combat duty. The airplane's service in key campaigns in Vietnam is covered, followed by the quieter years after it. The B-52 returned to prominence in the Gulf Wars and Afghanistan, taking part in massive bombing campaigns in both conflicts. Finally, the book ends with the constant upgrades that will keep the B-52 an integral part of U.S. airpower for decades to come.
Area 51's most important military aviation developments are profiled in an illustrated format. When most of us think of Area 51, we think of aliens, UFOs, and controversial government cover-ups. It's easy to forget that, since the mid-1950s, the United States' famed extension of Edwards Air Force Base has served as a top-secret CIA testing ground for many of the most groundbreaking advancements in American military aviation technology. In Area 51 - Black Jets, author and military historian Bill Yenne offers the first fully illustrated chronology of Area 51's most famous aircraft projects, including Lockheed's U-2 "Dragon Lady" and SR-71 "Blackbird" reconnaissance planes, drones ranging from the early Lockheed D-21 to the modern-day General Atomics MQ-1 Predator, and the famous F-117 Nighthawk stealth fighter produced by the Have Blue program during the 1970s. Each project is given its own fascinating chapter illuminating the aircraft's development at this famed location. But beyond the aircraft themselves, Area 51 - Black Jets also covers a handful of the many classified experimental programs carried out at Area 51 over the years, such as Have Doughnut, Have Ferry, and Have Drill - secret undertakings that successfully reverse-engineered such enemy aircraft as the Russian MiG during the Cold War. Illustrated with historic color and black-and-white photographs, diagrams, and maps, this book reveals Area 51 for what it truly is: a clandestine area for the United States' most cutting-edge technological innovators in military aviation.
The sensational true story of Eddie Rickenbacker, America's greatest flying ace
At the turn of the twentieth century two new technologies--the car and airplane--took the nation's imagination by storm as they burst, like comets, into American life. The brave souls that leaped into these dangerous contraptions and pushed them to unexplored extremes became new American heroes: the race car driver and the flying ace.
No individual did more to create and intensify these raw new roles than the tall, gangly Eddie Rickenbacker, who defied death over and over with such courage and pluck that a generation of Americans came to know his face better than the president's. The son of poor, German-speaking Swiss immigrants in Columbus, Ohio, Rickenbacker overcame the specter of his father's violent death, a debilitating handicap, and, later, accusations of being a German spy, to become the American military ace of aces in World War I and a Medal of Honor recipient. He and his high-spirited, all-too-short-lived pilot comrades, created a new kind of aviation warfare, as they pushed their machines to the edge of destruction--and often over it--without parachutes, radios, or radar.
Enduring Courage is the electrifying story of the beginning of America's love affair with speed--and how one man above all the rest showed a nation the way forward. No simple daredevil, he was an innovator on the racetrack, a skilled aerial dualist and squadron commander, and founder of Eastern Air Lines. Decades after his heroics against the Red Baron's Flying Circus, he again showed a war-weary nation what it took to survive against nearly insurmountable odds when he and seven others endured a harrowing three-week ordeal adrift without food or water in the Pacific during World War II.
For the first time, Enduring Courage peels back the layers of hero to reveal the man himself. With impeccable research and a gripping narrative, John F. Ross tells the unforgettable story of a man who pushed the limits of speed, endurance and courage and emerged as an American legend.
The XP-86F took to the skies for the first time in October 1947. Essentially, it was the result of incorporating swept wings into North American Aviation's design for the NA-140. This is a detailed look at the Sabre and its use by the Spanish Air Force over its lifetime.
This is a retrospective of the early 1990s, detailing the fates of many ex-Soviet Union, and Eastern Bloc combat aircraft. The former Soviet Union had a number of facilities to store and display Cold War-era aircraft, including complexes at Khodinka, Ramenskoye, and Tushino. Includes coverage of facilities in Hungary and former East Germany, as well as US aircraft that found their way into Soviet/Eastern Bloc service.
Designed in the years following the Korean war and then manufactured for over 30 years starting in 1960, the A-6 quickly became the most capable attack aircraft in the US Navy's stable. The first squadron, VA-75, made its initial deployment directly into combat in south-east Asia in 1965, and, over the next eight years, ten US Navy and four Marine Intruder squadrons would conduct combat operations throughout Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. After initial problems and a high loss rate, the type proved itself beyond all doubt as the Naval services' best night and foul-weather platform, particularly during the region's notorious monsoon season, which could ground almost all other in-theatre aircraft due to heavy rains and low visibility. The A-6 Intruder became a true classic of naval aviation over the skies of North Vietnam, with 14 of its crews being honoured with the second highest decoration in Naval service, the Navy Cross. The cost was high as 69 Intruders were lost in combat to all causes during the war. This work tells the complete story of these aircraft in combat during the Vietnam War.
Air Warfare provides an introduction to the subject's theory, history and practice. As well as delivering an up to date look at the strategy, and historiography of air power, Peter Gray explores the theories behind air power and looks at the political, legal and moral dimensions of the application of air power. Topics covered include:
- Key military strategists and their legacy
- Air power's strategic effects
- Leadership, management and command
- Tactics, technology and operations
The book draws on primary sources including official narratives and published reports, examines key thinkers in the study of air power, and discusses topics such as concepts of warfare as an art or science, cultural perceptions of air power, and the experience of being an airman. With its broad scope and thorough coverage of a range of key topics, Air Warfare takes air power beyond the study of individual campaigns, or controversies, providing a multi-disciplinary approach to air power studies.
This comprehensive discussion of airborne early warning (AEW) system concepts encompasses a wide range of issues, including capabilities and limitations, developmental trends, and opportunities for improvement. With sections suited for both the specialist and the generalist, it provides broad coverage of AEW system concepts and enabling technologies. The book is supported by 202 equations and 170 illustrations.