Air International 1984-10
Model enthusiast
Built as a U-2A, serial 56-6701 was progressively modified to U-2B standard and then to U-2C during its active life with the USAF. As well as the natural metal finish displayed here, during its period at Edwards AFB it also flew with SAC in all-black finish and in Europe in two-tone grey, before being retired to the SAC Museum at Offutt AFB, Omaha.
The U-2C 56-6719, operated by the 4080th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing, SAC, based at Davis-Monthan AFB, was one of a number that flew out of RAF Mildenhall, for which purpose the unobtrusive two-tone camouflage was adopted.
Built as a U-2A, 56-6721 was converted to U-2D configuration and flew many research missions out of Edwards AFB. An infra-red optical sensor is fitted behind the cockpit. It is now repainted in USAF Flight Test white and red and is displayed at March AFB.
The U-2D 56-6722 was later modified to single-seat configuration and used for various research programmes before joining the AF Flight Test Center at Edwards AFB, when it acquired this finish. It is now in the USAF Museum at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio.
Built as a U-2D, 56-6953 was operated by the 4080th SRW on HASP deployment to RAF Upper Heyford in 1962, and later became a two-seat U-2CT for use by the 100th SRW, and later the 9th SRW, as a trainer.
Shown in scale with earlier U-2 variants, the TR-1A has the same lengthened fuselage as the U-2R, and is hard to distinguish externally from the latter other than by serial number. Depicted here is 80-1067, the second of the TR-1As.