Air Pictorial 1998-03
D.Gordon - Destroyer deployers
An all-black Douglas RB-26C, 44-35765, of the 42nd TRS, 10th TRW, seen at RAF Bovingdon in 1955. Three large ventral radomes are supplemented by an array of blade aerials on the rear fuselage.
Built as a Douglas RB-66B, Destroyer 54-450 was used as a development aircraft by the USAF. The first of this model flew in December 1954, and it was some of these aircraft that performed such valuable support work during the Vietnam war.
The weather reconnaissance WB-66D was almost indistinguishable from the basic RB-66 as shown by this shot of 54-461 at Spangdahlem. ‘Weather’ was often a term used to cover intelligence gathering.
A land-based adaptation of the Douglas A3D Skywarrior, the RB-66 was powered by Allison J71s in place of the A3D’s Pratt & Whitney J57s. This view of a 10th TRW aircraft emphasises the clean aerodynamic lines of the Destroyer with the flight refuelling probe projecting alongside the di-electric nose panel enclosing the AN/APS-27 search radar.
For the electronics role the RB-66C received a lengthened tailcone in place of the remotely controlled GE twin 20 mm cannon and the associated MD-1 scanner.
Evocative shot of a 10th TRW Destroyer leaving on a ‘nightex’.
One of the 42nd’s EF-111A Ravens when it was based at RAF Upper Heyford in the late-1980s.