5 Aircraft Types That Served 50+ Years In USAF, Can You Guess Them All?
– The Boeing B-52 Stratofortress
Production stopped in 1962 with 744 of them built. Of the last version, the B-52 H there are 92 left with 80 operational. No longer with a nuclear tasks, the Boeing flies as a Launch Platform for Cruise missiles and drones.
– The Lockheed C-130 Hercules
first C-130 was delivered to the USAF in Dec. 1956 . The type had the longest production run of any Military aircraft. In total 2300 of all variants were built and until today, and the Cargo transport is still in production. With a payload of 20 tons, the aircraft has been exported all over the world.
– The Boeing KC-135 Stratotanker
Boeing’s first intercontinental Passenger Jet. Of the airborne Tankers some 820 were built in all variants. Production started in Aug 1956 and went on until 1965.
– The Lockheed U-2 Dragon Lady
The U-2 flew its first time operational in April 1956 as an odd single Jet engine Spy Plane. With a ceiling of 70.000 feet and 1700 miles of flight range it was the perfect Intelligence gathering platform, first for CIA and later for USAF who ordered 31 of them.
– The Northrop T-38 Supersonic Jet trainer
This sleek Jet went operational in March 1961 and was built until 1972. In total 1200 of them of which some 500 are still active and are planned for training duties until 2020. Over 60.000 pilots from a variety of Air Forces have earned their wings on this Jet, a timeless beauty .
– Douglas AC-47 Spooky
The Douglas AC-47 Spooky (also nicknamed “Puff, the Magic Dragon”) was the first in a series of gunships developed by the United States Air Force during the Vietnam War. It was designed to provide more firepower than light and medium ground-attack aircraft in certain situations when ground forces called for close air support.
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