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Research Aircraft: the Convair YB-60, Images by Wernher Krutein and PHOTOVAULT®

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The sweptwing, eight-jet bomber YB-60, 49-2676 was Convair's alternative to the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress. Equipped with eight Pratt & Whitney turbojet engines, the YB-60 was rolled out of the Convair factory in Texas on April 6, 1952, for engine run-ups and ground tests. It first flew three days after the first flight of the Boeing YB-52 Stratofortress on April 18, 1952.

There were 20 test filights that 66 hours of flight time. There were many reasons for the quick cancelation of this program including the slower speed of the YB-60 (467 miles per hour) to the rival YB-52 (521 miles per hour). Also becuase the YB-60 was a modification of the much slower B-36 the flight controls were much slower to respond because of the hiugher control forces.

The Air Force cancelled the B-60 production program on August 14, 1952.

Specifications:
Engines: Eight 8700 lbs Pratt & Whitney J57-P-3 turbojets
Performance: Maximum speed 508 mph at 39,250 feet
Combat ceiling 44,650 feet
Maximum range 8000 miles
Combat radius 2920 miles with 10,000 pound bomb load
Initial climb rate 1570 feet per minute. An altitude of 30,000 feet could be attained in 28.3 minutes
Ground run 6710 feet, takeoff to clear a 50 feet obstacle 8131 feet
Normal cruising altitude 37,000 feet. Maximum cruising altitude 53,300 feet

Dimensions:
wingspan 206 feet 0 inches
length 171 feet 0 inches
height 60 feet 6 inches
wing area 5239 square feet

Weights:
153,016 pounds empty, 300,000 pounds gross
Armament: Two 20-mm cannon in the tail. Maximum bombload of 72,000 pounds
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