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United States' Lockheed Hudson bomber, reconnaissance

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Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber:
United States' Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber
Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber:
United States' Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber
Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber:
United States' Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk I bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk I bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk I bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk I bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk I bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk I bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber
Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook

Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber

Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook

Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber

Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber

Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber

Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber

Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk III bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk IIIA bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk IIIA bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk V bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk V bomber

Lockheed Hudson Mk V bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk V bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk V bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk V bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk V bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk V bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk V bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk V bomber
Lockheed Hudson Mk VI bomber:
United States' Lockheed Hudson Mk VI bomber
Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber that forced a U-Boat to surrender:
United States' Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber that forced a UBoat to surrender
Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber that forced a U-Boat to surrender:
United States' Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber that forced a UBoat to surrender
Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber that forced a U-Boat to surrender:
United States' Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber that forced a UBoat to surrender
Kawasaki Type Lo that was a license built Model 14 Super Electra. Allied codename: Thelma:
Kawasaki Type Lo that was a license built Model 14 Super Electra. Allied codename: Thelma
Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber:
United States' Lockheed A-29 Hudson bomber

Design

The design of the Lockheed Hudson was based on the Lockheed Model 14 Super Electra civil transport.1,3,4,6 The Hudson was to become a maritime reconnaissance plane.2,4

The Hudson differed from the Super Electra by having more powerful engines, a bomb bay, defensive armament, and glass windows in the front of the fuselage.4

The British are the ones that named it Hudson.4

Fuselage

The internal area could be converted to carry passengers.1

Tail

The twin vertical fins allowed for the gunner to have nearly a clear field of fire.1

Prototype

The prototype of the Lockheed Model 14 Super Electra first flew on July 29, 1937.4

The Hudson prototype first flew on December 10, 1938.1,2,3,4

Production

Production of the Lockheed Hudson ended in May 1943 / June 19434.1,3,4

  • Lockheed Hudson Mk I: 3503
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk II: 203
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk III: 4144, 4283
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk IIIA / Lockheed Hudson A-29: 8003
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk IV: 1303
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk IVA / Lockheed Hudson A-28: 523
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk V / Lockheed Hudson A-28A: 4092,3
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk VI: 4503
  • Lockheed AT-18/A: 3003
  • Total: 2,9411,3, 2,9426
    • Manufacturer: Lockheed Aircraft Company4,6
    • Manufacturing location: Burbank, California6

Variants

In March 1941 Lend Lease began and as a result the aircraft were property of the United States so the Hudsons became the A-28 and A-29 series.6

  • Lockheed Hudson Mk I:
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk II: Had hydromatic / fixed pitch4 propellers.2,4
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk III: Had Wright GR-1820-G205A radial engines (1,200 HP).2,3 Additional defensive armament.4
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk IIIA / Lockheed Hudson A-29: Lend-Lease supply.3
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk IV: Had Pratt & Whitney radial engines.2
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk IVA / Lockheed Hudson A-28: Lend-Lease supply.3
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk V: Had Pratt & Whitney radial engines.2,4
  • Lockheed Hudson Mk VI: Had Pratt & Whitney radial engines.2,4
  • Lockheed Hudson ??: Search and rescue version with a lifeboat under the fuselage.1
  • Lockheed A-28 (Hudson IVA, Hudson V, Hudson VI): US Army Air Force attack version.1
  • Lockheed A-28A (Hudson IVA, Hudson V, Hudson VI):
  • Lockheed A-29 (Hudson III, Hudson IIIA): US Army Air Force attack version.1 Models taken back from the United Kingdom.2
  • Lockheed A-29A (Hudson III, Hudson IIIA): Models taken back from the United Kingdom.2
  • Lockheed A-29B (Hudson III, Hudson IIIA):
  • Lockheed AT-18: Trainer.1,2 Gunnery.3
  • Lockheed AT-18B: Trainer.2 The dorsal turret was removed.2 Navigation.3
  • Lockheed PBO: The US Navy's patrol bomber.1

Usage

Used by Australia1,2,3,4, Canada1,2,3, China1,2, Netherlands3, New Zealand1,2,3,4, Portugal1,2, South Africa1,2,3, the Soviet Union1,2, United Kingdom1,2,3,4, and United States1,2,3.

U-boats captured or destroyed

On August 21, 19414 / August 27, 1941, a Hudson of Squadron No. 269 helped cause U-boat U-570 surrender.2,4

On March 15, 1942, US Navy Hudsons sank two U-boats.1

On July 7, 1942, an A-29 sank U-701.1

In May 1943 a Hudson was the first to sink a U-boat with rockets.3

United Kingdom

The Lockheed Hudson was the first American built plane to serve with the Royal Air Force (RAF).1 The United Kingdom ordered 200 (increased to 350) Hudson Mk Is.2,3,4 The first one arrived in Liverpool on February 15, 1939 / 19394.2,4 Eventually the British were to receive ~2,000.3,4 Of these 1,170 were supplied under Lend-Lease.3

The first unit to receive the Hudson was the Royal Air Force's No. 224 Squadron.2 These replaced their Avro Ansons.2 The first unit was with the Coastal Command in Scotland.4

The Hudsons were used with Coastal Command as reconnaissance aircraft.4

On October 8, 1939, a Hudson shot down the first German aircraft of the war.3

A Hudson lead the British navy to the German prison ship the Altmark in February 1940.1,3

The No. 280 Squadron was the first to have Hudsons drop lifeboats in the North Sea in 1943.1

2,487 Hudsons were purchased by the United Kingdom.2 423 were supplied to Australia, Canada, China, New Zealand, Portugal, and South Africa.2

By the end of the war the Hudson was being primarily used as a transport plane in 31 RAF squadrons.2

South Atlantic

There were Lockheed Hudsons based in Manaos, Brazil to patrol the South Atlantic.1

Australia

Starting in January 1940 the first of 247 Hudsons were delivered to Australia.3 Two squadrons were hit by the Japanese attack on Malaya on December 8, 1941.3

United States Navy

Twenty PBO-1s (A-29s) were received by the US Navy.3 These scored the first two submarine kills for the US Navy.3

Specifications

  Lockheed Hudson
Type Reconnaissance bomber3
Crew 4 - 53
Engine (Type)  
Cylinders  
Cooling  
HP  
Propeller blades  
Dimensions  
Span 65' 6"3
19.96 m3
Length 44' 3.75"3
13.5 m3
Height 10' 10.5"3
3.32 m3
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty  
Loaded  
Performance  
Speed  
Cruising speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling  
Range  
Range with max load  
Armament  
  Lockheed Hudson Mk I
Type Maritime patrol / bomber1, Reconnaissance4
Crew 41, 54
Pilot, navigator, bomb-aimer, radio operator1
Engine (Type) 2: Wright GR-1820-G-102A piston1,4
2: Wright R-1820-G102A Cyclone3
Cylinders Radial1, Radial 93,4
Cooling Air4
HP 1,100 each1,3,4
Propeller blades 3 each1,3
Dimensions  
Span 65'1, 65' 6"4
19.96 m1
Length 44'1, 44' 4"4
13.51 m1
Height 11' 10"4, 12'1
3.61 m1
Wing area 551 ft2 1
51.19 m2 1
Weight  
Empty 11,605 lb1
5,275 kg1
Loaded 17,464 lb1, 17,500'4
7,938 kg1
Performance  
Speed @ 6,500' /
1,980 m
245 mph1, 246 mph4
396 kph1
Cruising speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling 25,000'1,4
7,620 m1
Range 1,500 miles4, 1,955 miles1
3,154 km1
Armament 5: MG4
up to 7 0.303" MG3
Nose 2: 7.62 mm MG1
Dorsal turret 2: 7.62 mm MG1
Bombs 750 lb4
Bomb-bay - bombs or depth charges 1,400 lb1, 1,600 lb3
635 kg1, 726 kg3
  Lockheed Hudson Mk II
Type  
Crew  
Engine (Type) 2: Wright R-1820-G102A Cyclone3
Cylinders Radial 93
Cooling  
HP 1,100 each3
Propeller blades 3 each3
Dimensions  
Span  
Length  
Height  
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty  
Loaded  
Performance  
Speed  
Cruising speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling  
Range  
Armament  
  Lockheed Hudson Mk III
Type  
Crew  
Engine (Type) 2: Wright R-1820-G205A3
2: Wright Cyclone5
Cylinders  
Cooling  
HP 1,200 each3,5
Propeller blades 3 each3
Dimensions  
Span 65' 6"5
Length 44' 4"5
Height 11' 10"5
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty 13,160 lb3
5,969 kg3
Loaded 18,500 lb5, 20,000 lb3
9,072 kg3
Performance  
Speed 285 mph5
Speed @ 15,000' /
4,572 m
252 mph3
405 kph3
Cruising speed 155 - 196 mph3
249 - 315 kph3
Climb to 10,000' /
3,050 m
1,200'/minute3
366 m/minute3
Service ceiling 25,000'3
7,620 m3
Range 1,355 miles3, 2,100 miles5
2,180 km3
Range with max load 780 miles3
1,255 km3
Armament up to 7 0.303" MG3
Nose 2: MG5
Dorsal turret 1: MG5
Ventral position 1: MG5
Bomb-bay - bombs or depth charges 1,600 lb3
726 kg3
  Lockheed A-29 / Hudson Mk IIIA
Type Bomber2 , Light Bomber6
Crew 42,6
Engine (Type) 2: Wright R-1820-87 Cyclone2,6
2: Wright 1820-G205A3
Cylinders Radial2, Radial 96
Cooling Air6
HP 1,200 each2,3,6
Propeller blades 3 each3, 3 constant speed6
Dimensions  
Span 65' 6"2,6
19.96 m2
Length 44' 4"2,6
13.51 m2
Height 11' 11"2
3.63 m2
Wing area 551 ft2 2,6
51.19 m2 2
Weight  
Empty 12,825 lb2,6
5,817 kg2
Loaded 20,500 lb2,6
9,299 kg2
Performance  
Speed  
Speed @ 15,000' /
4,570 m
253 mph2,6
407 kph2
Cruising speed 205 mph6
Climb to 10,000' /
3,050 m
6.3 minutes2
Service ceiling 26,500'2,6
8,075 m2
Range - Loaded 1,550 miles2,6
2,494 km2
Range - Max 2,800 miles6
Armament  
Nose 2: 7.62 mm MG2
2: .30 cal MG6
Dorsal turret 1: 7.62 mm MG2
1: .50 cal MG6
Ventral position 1: 7.62 mm MG2
Bomb-bay - bombs or depth charges 1,400 lb6, 1,600 lb2
726 kg2
  Lockheed Hudson Mk IV
Type  
Crew  
Engine (Type) 2: Pratt & Whitney R-1830-SC3G Twin Wasp3
Cylinders Radial 143
Cooling  
HP 1,200 each3
Propeller blades 3 each3
Dimensions  
Span  
Length  
Height  
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty  
Loaded  
Performance  
Speed  
Cruising speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling  
Range  
Armament  
  Lockheed A-28 / Hudson Mk IVA
Type  
Crew  
Engine (Type) 2: Pratt & Whitney R-1830-SC3G Twin Wasp3
Cylinders Radial 143
Cooling  
HP 1,200 each3
Propeller blades 3 each3
Dimensions  
Span  
Length  
Height  
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty  
Loaded  
Performance  
Speed  
Cruising speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling  
Range  
Range with max load  
Armament  
  Lockheed A-28A / Hudson Mk VA
Type  
Crew  
Engine (Type) 2: Pratt & Whitney R-1830-S3C4-G3
Cylinders  
Cooling  
HP 1,200 each3
Propeller blades 3 each3
Dimensions  
Span  
Length  
Height  
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty  
Loaded  
Performance  
Speed  
Cruising speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling  
Range  
Armament  
  Lockheed Hudson Mk VI
Type  
Crew  
Engine (Type) 2: Pratt & Whitney R-1830-S3C4-G3
Cylinders  
Cooling  
HP 1,200 each3
Propeller blades 3 each3
Dimensions  
Span  
Length  
Height  
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty  
Loaded  
Performance  
Speed  
Cruising speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling  
Range  
Armament  

Sources:

  1. Aircraft of WWII, General Editor: Jim Winchester, 2004
  2. Fighting Aircraft of World War II, Editor: Karen Leverington, 1995
  3. Aircraft of WWII, Stewart Wilson, 1998
  4. World War II Airplanes Volume 2, Enzo Angelucci, Paolo Matricardi, 1976
  5. Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook, Ensign L. C. Guthman, 1943
  6. American Attack Aircraft Since 1926, E. R. Johnson, 2012
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site

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