Douglas XB-19

Douglas XB-19
XB-19
Role Heavy bomber
Manufacturer Douglas Aircraft
First flight 27 June 1941
Retired Scrapped in 1949
Status Experimental
Primary user United States Army Air Corps
Number built 1

The Douglas XB-19 was the largest bomber aircraft built for the United States Army Air Corps until 1946. It was originally given the designation XBLR-2 (XBLR- denoting Experimental Bomber, Long Range).

Contents

Design and development

The purpose of the XB-19 project was to test the flight characteristics and design techniques associated with giant bombers. Douglas Aircraft Company strongly wanted to cancel the project, because it was extremely expensive. Despite advances in technology that made the XB-19 obsolete before it was even completed, the Army Air Corps felt that the prototype would be useful for testing. Its construction took so long that competition for the contracts to make the XB-35 and XB-36 occurred two months before its first flight.

The plane finally flew on June 27, 1941, more than three years after the construction contract was awarded. In 1943, the original Wright R-3350 engines were replaced with Allison V-3420-11 V engines. After completion of testing, the XB-19 served as a cargo carrier until it was scrapped in 1949.

Surviving artefacts

XB-19A at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base before scrapping.

The newly formed U.S. Air Force had begun plans to save the B-19 for eventual display, but in 1949 the Air Force did not yet have a program in place to save historic aircraft, and the Air Force Museum had not yet been constructed. As a result, the B-19 was scrapped, but two of its enormous main tires were saved. One was put on display at the Hill Aerospace Museum at Hill Air Force Base in Ogden, Utah and the other has been on display at the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio, in the "Early Years" gallery for many years.[1]

Specifications (XB-19A)

General characteristics

Performance

Armament

See also

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era

Related lists

References

  1. ^ Museum placard

External links




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