World War II Fighter Planes Spotter's Guide

Author: Tony Holmes

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781472848529

Category: History

Page: 192

View: 459

World War II saw pilots from around the world battling in the skies over Europe, Asia and Africa, with victory resting upon their nerve, skill and the capabilities of some of history's most iconic aircraft. In the chaos of battle, it was vital that they could quickly identify friend from foe. But do you know your Hurricane from your Bf 109, or what the legendary P-51 Mustang looks like? Do you know the wingspan of the A6M Zero-sen, or how fast it could fly? THE WORLD WAR II FIGHTER PLANES SPOTTER'S GUIDE answers all of these questions and more, providing essential information on over 90 legendary aircraft, from the celebrated Spitfire to the jet-powered Me 262. Featuring full-colour artwork to aid recognition, as well as all the details you need to assess their performance, this is the perfect pocket guide to the Allied and Axis fighters of World War II.
P-39/P-400 Airacobra vs A6M2/3 Zero-sen

Author: Michael John Claringbould

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781472823670

Category: History

Page: 81

View: 719

After the huge advances made in the early months of the Pacific war, it was in remote New Guinea where the advance of Imperial Japanese Naval Air Force (IJNAF) A6M Zero-sen fighters was first halted due to a series of offensive and defensive aerial battles ranging from treetop height up to 30,000 ft. Initially, the IJNAF fought Australian Kittyhawks, but by May 1942 they had fought themselves into oblivion, and were relieved by USAAF P-39 and P-400 Airacobras. The battles unfolded over mountainous terrain with treacherous tropical weather. Neither IJNAF or USAAF pilots had been trained for such extreme conditions, incurring many additional losses aside from those that fell in combat. Using specially commissioned artwork and contemporary photographs and testimony, this fascinating study explains how, despite their initial deficit in experience and equipment, the Airacobras managed to square the ledger and defend New Guinea.
Soviet Aces of World War 2

Author: Hugh Morgan

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781846037542

Category: History

Page: 100

View: 457

No single volume in English has ever appeared in the West dealing with this intriguing subject area, but now that restrictions have relaxed in the former Soviet Union, records of the deeds of the elite pilots of the various Soviet Air Forces are coming to light. Although initially equipped with very poor aircraft, and robbed of effective leadership thanks as much to Stalin's purges in the late 1930s as to the efforts of the Luftwaffe, Soviet fighter pilots soon turned the tables through the use of both lend-lease aircraft like the Hurricane, Spitfire, P-39 and P-40, and home-grown machines like the MiG-3, LaGG-3/5, Lavochkin La-5/7/9 and the Yak-1/3.
Soviet Lend-Lease Fighter Aces of World War 2

Author: George Mellinger

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781782005865

Category: History

Page: 97

View: 812

By the end of 1941 the Soviet Union was near collapse and its air force almost annihilated, leaving large numbers of surviving pilots with no aircraft to fly. To help prevent this collapse the UK eventually supplied a total of 4300 Hurricanes and Spitfires to the USSR. After the United States entered the war, the Americans extended Lend-lease to include direct supply to the Soviets as well as the British, and among the aircraft sent were almost 10,000 fighters. Although the aircraft were outdated and often unsuitable to Russian conditions, they served when they were needed, and a number of Russian pilots became Heroes of the Soviet Union flying Lend-lease aircraft. The Soviet government tried to conceal or minimize the importance of Lend-lease fighters well into the 1980s, and the pilots who flew them were discriminated against as 'foreigners'. Only in recent years have these pilots felt free to admit what they flew, and now the fascinating story of these men can emerge.
Mitsubishi Type 1 Rikko ‘Betty’ Units of World War 2

Author: Osamu Tagaya

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781472800503

Category: History

Page: 236

View: 953

The most produced Japanese bomber of the war the G4M saw action on every front from the first day of the Pacific conflict through to VJ-Day. The 'Betty's' very long range made it a key weapon during the opening year of the war. However, to achieve this, the aircraft was built with very little protective armour for its crew or fuel tanks, and Allied pilots soon exposed its extreme vulnerability. In the first in a series of volumes examining the key Japanese aircraft of WW2, Dr Osamu Tagaya details the G4M's extensive combat history, and lists all the units which operated the bomber.
Italian Aces of World War 2

Author: Giorgio Apostolo

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781782008552

Category: History

Page: 151

View: 565

Flying aircraft such as the Macchi 200-202, Fiat G.50 and biplane Fiat CR.42, the Italian fighter pilots were recognised by their Allied counterparts as brave opponents blessed with sound flying abilities, but employing under-gunned and underpowered equipment. Following the Italian surrender in September 1943, a number of aces continued to take the fight to the Allies as part of the Luftwaffe-run ANR, which was equipped with far more potent equipment such as the Bf 109G, Macchi 205V and Fiat G.55. Flying these types, the handful of ANR squadrons continued to oppose Allied bombing raids on northern Italy until VE-Day.
Rumanian Aces of World War 2

Author: Dénes Bérnad

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781782007289

Category: History

Page: 97

View: 834

First seeing action in the wake of the German invasion of the USSR in June 1941, the Royal Rumanian Air Force had been allied to the Luftwaffe since the Romanian government signed a Tripartite Pact with Germany and Italy in November 1940. This book reveals how, despite suffering heavy losses to the numerically superior Russian forces, the Rumanians inflicted even greater casualties on the communists. Locked in bitter conflict with the Soviets until September 1944, when the Red Army poured across the Rumanian frontier and forced an armistice, the modest fighter force claimed 1500+ kills using primarily Bf 109's, E's.
MiG-3 Aces of World War 2

Author: Dmitriy Khazanov

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781780960296

Category: History

Page: 151

View: 863

The MiG-1/3 family of fighters was built to satisfy a Soviet Air Force requirement for an advanced, fast, high-altitude fighter. Entering service in the spring of 1941, the problematic MiG-1 had its handling issues rectified with the hasty production of the MiG-3. Many of these were destroyed on the ground when the Germans launched Operation Barbarossa. Nevertheless, enough examples survived to allow pilots such as Stepan Suprun and Aleksandr Pokryshkin to claim a number of victories in the type. This book tells the complete story of the men who made ace in the first examples of the famous MiG fighter.
Soviet Hurricane Aces of World War 2

Author: Yuriy Rybin

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781849087421

Category: History

Page: 97

View: 667

Following the destruction wrought on the Red Army Air Forces during the first days of Operation Barbarossa in June 1941, the Soviet Union found itself desperately short of fighter aircraft. Premier Josef Stalin duly appealed directly to Prime Minister Winston Churchill for replacement aircraft, and in late 1941 the British delivered the first of 3360 Hurricanes that would be supplied to the Soviet Union under the Lend-Lease agreement. Specifically requested by the USSR, the Hurricanes were quickly thrown into action in early 1942 – the Soviet Air Forces' most difficult year in their opposition to the Luftwaffe. Virtually all the Hurricanes were issued to Soviet fighter regiments in the northern sector of the front, where pilots were initially trained to fly the aircraft by RAF personnel that had accompanied the early Hawker fighters to the USSR. The Hurricane proved to be an easy aircraft to master, even for the poorly trained young Soviet pilots, allowing the Red Army to form a large number of new fighter regiments quickly in the polar area. In spite of a relatively poor top speed, and only a modest rate-of-climb, the Hurricane was the mount of at least 17 Soviet aces.
LaGG & Lavochkin Aces of World War 2

Author: George Mellinger

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 9781782005841

Category: History

Page: 97

View: 979

This book examines the LaGG family of fighters, that were amongst the first modern piston-engined interceptors made available to the Red Air Forces in early 1941and proved far better fighters than their radial-engined predecessors. Despite technical maladies and political interference from Moscow, the LaGG-3 matured into an effective fighter when flown to its strengths at low level. Many early Soviet aces were weaned on the LaGG-3, and if they survived the early massacres of 1941-42, they went on to fly the Lavochkin family of fighters. Indeed, the Lavochkin La-3, -5 and -7 were the fighters of choice for Heroes of the Soviet Union such as Ivan Kozhedub, who claimed 62 kills.