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Air Force Military Aircraft: Lockheed EC-121 Warning Star and C-121, Images by Wernher Krutein and PHOTOVAULT®

PHOTOVAULT contains a comprehensive archive of military images. This page contains samples from our picture files on the Lockheed EC-121 Warning Star in it's varients. These photographs are available for licensing in any media. For Pricing, General Guidelines, and Delivery information click here. You may contact us thru email or by phone for more information on the use of these images, and any others in our files not shown here.

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See Also: Lockheed Constellation, Navy, Naval Aviation, Army, Marines, USMC, Coast Guard, AEROSPACE, Eagles, TRANSPORTATION, MILITARY, ROCKETS
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The EC-121 Warning Star originally designated as the RC-121 is a radar-picket modification of the USAF C-121 passenger airplane which evolved from the Lockheed Constellation commercial transport. The massive radomes above and below the fuselage carry six tons of electronic gear. These aircraft entered service with the Air Defense Command in 1953 flying patrols over all the U.S coasts as an aerial extension of the Distant Early Warning DEW Line. The Air Force ordered 62 EC-121s between 1951 and 1955, 72 of which were Ds. The unarmed EC-121 carried a normal crew of 16.

In Southeast Asia these unarmed radar aircraft aided in downing enemy planes, directed U.S. aircraft to their aerial refueling tankers, and guided rescue planes to downed pilots. Most of the EC-121 series 53-0534 through 53-0559 were based at McClellan Air Force Base in California during the late 50s and 60s. One of the aircraft shown here in Dayton Ohio was nicknamed Triple Nickel because of its serial number 53-0555. On October 24, 1967, over the Gulf of Tonkin it guided a U.S. fighter into position by radar to destroy an enemy MiG-21. This was the first time a weapons controller aboard an airborne radar aircraft had ever directed a successful attack on an enemy plane.


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