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Civilian based bomber ( or bomb carrier) projects: request for info

Firefly 2

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A mate of mine mentioned a strange proposal by Airbus: an A380 able to be used both as a cargo and as a " bomb carrier". Not a bomber in the true modern sense of the world, and not intended for deep penetration of enemy territories, but instead used as a high altititude weapons dispenser platform for troop support. He also stated that that was the way B52's where used in Afghanistan and Iraq, using JDAM's. He said he read it in a french mag called Air & Cosmos.

Interresting.

Browsing the forum I found mention on this site about 747 proposals carrying ALCM's and even ICBM's ( I believe a test was conducted in that vein by launching a Minuteman III from a C5) but nothing quite as my mate described. So if anybody has info on such projects, I would be very gratefull.

Also, strange thought... It's as if bomber development would have come full circle for a part. The earliest civilian transports where modified bombers after all.

Thanks
Wouter
 

frank

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I haven't heard of specifically the A380, but I have read where Airbus was proposing a "B-52 replacement", but I never saw a drawing or any other details.


Firefly said:
A mate of mine mentioned a strange proposal by Airbus: an A380 able to be used both as a cargo and as a " bomb carrier". Not a bomber in the true modern sense of the world, and not intended for deep penetration of enemy territories, but instead used as a high altititude weapons dispenser platform for troop support. He also stated that that was the way B52's where used in Afghanistan and Iraq, using JDAM's. He said he read it in a french mag called Air & Cosmos.

Interresting.

Browsing the forum I found mention on this site about 747 proposals carrying ALCM's and even ICBM's ( I believe a test was conducted in that vein by launching a Minuteman III from a C5) but nothing quite as my mate described. So if anybody has info on such projects, I would be very gratefull.

Also, strange thought... It's as if bomber development would have come full circle for a part. The earliest civilian transports where modified bombers after all.

Thanks
Wouter
 

Kim Margosein

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If you assume that future bombers will be used against technologically weak opponents such as in Afghanistan and Iraq, such a system seems the way to go. The target coordinates could be fed directly into the munitions, and the bombs simply booted out the rear ramp. Sure a lot cheaper than building B-2s to drop bombs on some mountain malcontents.

Kim M
 

Trident

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I still think airliners are somewhat over-engineered for dropping bombs. What about the pressurised fuselage, pretty much structural dead weight for a bomber, isn't it? I suppose that's one of the secrets to the success story of the B-52, it doesn't have anything it doesn't need for the task, making it quite efficient.
 

Skybolt

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Well, as bomb truck the B-52 is even over-engineered... Think instead of a Convair YB-60.. ;)
 

Rickshaw

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The Vickers VC-10 was proposed as a bomber/missile carrier at one point early in its development IIRC. The proposal was for the aircraft to be fitted with bomb panniers on the leading edge of the wing, in the style of the Vickers Wellesley tween-wars bomber. Alternatively, Skybolt missiles could be carried. Nothing came of the proposal of course. I believe its discussed in "Project Cancelled".
 

Firefly 2

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Some of you guys talk about civilian aircraft being overengineered for the bomber carrier/dispenser role as such. I can't disagree. All you would really need is a simple long range aircraft fitted with quite simple systems. All of the shelf except for the design itself.

But these civilian designs have been developped allready. Wouldn't it be more cost effective to go for a derrivative instead of a new design?
 

Jemiba

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A very old of my drawings, but at least it's guaranteed to be without
any problems with regards to copy rights ! ;)
 

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Firefly 2

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Looks like a hell of a load to put on an unstrengtened wing.
Bombs in the nacelles then, Wellesley style?
 

Skybolt

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Not exactly a civilian type, but... In 1959-60 US considered arming their fleet of KC-135 tankers with a couple of Skybolts under the wings. Rationale was that since the tankers lastly refuelled the bombers just outside URSS borders (or just before the attack run) , they could launch a couple of shots just to clear the first layer of air defense for them... Concept was still considered in 1961.
 

Archibald

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Firefly said:
A mate of mine mentioned a strange proposal by Airbus: an A380 able to be used both as a cargo and as a " bomb carrier". Not a bomber in the true modern sense of the world, and not intended for deep penetration of enemy territories, but instead used as a high altititude weapons dispenser platform for troop support. He also stated that that was the way B52's where used in Afghanistan and Iraq, using JDAM's. He said he read it in a french mag called Air & Cosmos.

Interresting.

Browsing the forum I found mention on this site about 747 proposals carrying ALCM's and even ICBM's ( I believe a test was conducted in that vein by launching a Minuteman III from a C5) but nothing quite as my mate described. So if anybody has info on such projects, I would be very gratefull.

Also, strange thought... It's as if bomber development would have come full circle for a part. The earliest civilian transports where modified bombers after all.

Thanks
Wouter

A big joke! Air&Comos is a weekly newspaper, each Friday :)
In 2005, april 1st was... a Friday.
So they decided to make an april fool ;D
Hence this A380 bomber you heard about.
A pure fake, but very well "documented" and realistic, perfectly do-able (had Europe the will and money to do it :'( )

I had scanned the pics, and they are still available somewhere in the depth of the whatif modelers board ;)
 

Firefly 2

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Archibald said:
Firefly said:
A mate of mine mentioned a strange proposal by Airbus: an A380 able to be used both as a cargo and as a " bomb carrier". Not a bomber in the true modern sense of the world, and not intended for deep penetration of enemy territories, but instead used as a high altititude weapons dispenser platform for troop support. He also stated that that was the way B52's where used in Afghanistan and Iraq, using JDAM's. He said he read it in a french mag called Air & Cosmos.

Interresting.

Browsing the forum I found mention on this site about 747 proposals carrying ALCM's and even ICBM's ( I believe a test was conducted in that vein by launching a Minuteman III from a C5) but nothing quite as my mate described. So if anybody has info on such projects, I would be very gratefull.

Also, strange thought... It's as if bomber development would have come full circle for a part. The earliest civilian transports where modified bombers after all.

Thanks
Wouter

A big joke! Air&Comos is a weekly newspaper, each Friday :)
In 2005, april 1st was... a Friday.
So they decided to make an april fool ;D
Hence this A380 bomber you heard about.
A pure fake, but very well "documented" and realistic, perfectly do-able (had Europe the will and money to do it :'( )

I had scanned the pics, and they are still available somewhere in the depth of the whatif modelers board ;)

I should have known... :(
 

Archibald

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... BUT on the other end, in March 2002 the same magazine mentionned an A340-500 bomber, and this was not an april fool!
Seems that Airbus made the proposal at the light of Tora-bora bombings by
B-52s in the Afghanistan campain. But nothing come of this proposal... :'(
 

fightingirish

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A method for converting an civilian aircraft to an ALM / ALCM carrier aircraft
Source: German Magazine Luftfahrt International September 1982
US Patent: http://www.google.com/patents/US4318328


So, this how a FedEx and UPS expansion into the eastern European market during the 80's would have looked liked. ;) :D
 

Deltafan

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Thoughts?
There is a three parts article now in the monthly French magazine Le Fana de l'aviation (February, March, April) about the attack of the Stark by the modified iraki Falcon 50.

From the free Facebook page of Le Fana (the cover of February, and 4 pages of each month) :
 

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  • Falcon 50 - Stark Feb 3.jpg
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  • Falcon 50 - Stark Mar 1.jpg
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  • Falcon 50 - Stark Mar 2.jpg
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  • Falcon 50 - Stark Apr 1.jpg
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  • Falcon 50 - Stark Apr 2.png
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