Air Enthusiast 2003-07
F.Allen - Before the B-2
Специально созданная для B-2 бомба GAM-113 калибром 2200 кг предназначена для поражения особо прочных заглубленных целей (пещеры, бункеры в скальных породах и т.п.). B-2 способен нести 16 таких бомб.
With the B-2 the flying-wing concept was vindicated. Trial drop of a GAM-113 deep penetration weapon.
Vaindication of the flying-wing bomber concept - the Northrop B-2A Spirit.
Jack Northrop (right) and test pilot, Moye Stephens, with their N-1M.
Rear view of XB-35 revealing just how clean and drag free the design was. Housing over the propeller shafts offered enough area to counteract any yawing tendency.
Underside if the YB-35A.
Test-pilot, Max Stanley, at left, with the crew of the XB-35, which made the first test flight of both the piston- and jet-powered flying wings.
A trio of flying wings at Muroc. The No.1 XB-35 in the foreground has had its counter-rotating propellers changed to single four-bladed types. Two jet YB-49s are in the background.
Construction in progress showing the interior rib stringer layout and the all-metal stressed skin, pioneered by Jack Northrop.
Cutaway of the original XB-35.
Shown is the first of the two YB-49 jet powered conversions of YB-35s. This machine, 42.10236, initially flew on 21 October 1947. Powered by six 4.000lb s.t. Allison J35-A-15s, the YB-49's top level speed of 493mph at 20,000 feet may have been over 100mph faster than the piston-engined XB-35, but the thirst of these early jet engines can be gauged by the greatly reduced warload/range capability of 3.155 miles with a 10.000lb bombload. On 5 June 1948, the second YB-49 broke up in flight during forward centre of gravity checks killing all five crew members. Programme cancellation followed in 1949, resulting, according to a Wright Patterson assessment, from insurmountable instability problems. (Northrop)
The YB-49 in flight reveals fins, wing fences, intakes, elevons operating to bank the aircraft (note deployment at top of the wing) and pilot in his bubble canopy.
To channel air properly and act as a barrier against the spanwise (cross-wing) flow of boundary layer air, wing fences were built along the wing, runnig from the fins forward to an area just behind the leading edge.
The last of the Northrop flying-wings and the last to fly was the YRB-49A, a reconnaissance version of the YB-49. It featured six Allison J35-A-19s, four of which were buried in the wing and two hung in pods below the buried engines.
The YB-49 seen in profile while taking off was a deceiving view, indicating a much smaller machine than it actually was. As an example, the main gear wheels were 65in in diameter, without their tyres!
The first YB-49 taking off on its maiden flight. Leading edge waing air intakes were modified for the jet engines.
Pilot positions in the YB-49. Wheel at left was for the pilot in a stepped-up position. Wheel at right was for the co-pilot. The flat 'greenhouse' area was positioned both above and below the co-pilot, while the pilot sat in a clear bubble canopy area.
Cutaway of the YB-49 showing how clean the all-jet design was.