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Reggiane Re.2003 recce bomber aircraft

hesham

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Hi,


the Reggiane Re.2003 was a tandem two-seat recce bomber aircraft,developed from Re.2000 III,
equipped with 1025 hp Piaggio P.XIbis R.C.40 radial engine.
 

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Stargazer2006

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More pics of the Re.2003:
 

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cluttonfred

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Interesting that it is a two-seater but with no obvious provision for defensive armament. In the recconnaisance role that might make sense if you are going in fast and high, but in the light bomber role?
 

Jemiba

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cluttonfred said:
Interesting that it is a two-seater but with no obvious provision for defensive armament. In the recconnaisance role that might make sense if you are going in fast and high, but in the light bomber role?

Indeed ! And in the recconnaisance role it would have made sense, to keep the aircraft aerodynamically as clean as possible,
a requirement not really met by the rear cockpit glazing, which reminds me much more to a trainer, like the Me 09 G-12, with
its bulged out rear cockpit to provide at least some forward view.
(photo from http://www.flickr.com/photos/farinihouseoflove/2210568148/sizes/m/in/photostream/)
 

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Apophenia

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Apparently, the shape of the glazing of the rear canopy was at the request of the Ministero dell'Aeronautica. There was also glazing added to the rear cockpit floor to facilitate observation. Did the 'osservatore' also directly operate the camera, I wonder?

It is odd that the Direzione del Genio e delle Costruzioni Aeronautiche thought that ricognizione aerea could be performed by an aircraft without rear defence armament. Perhaps it was because the Re.2003 was so much faster than the Ro.37bis it was to replace? But, as cluttonfred noted, that still would not explain why no rear defence for the ground attack role also required of the Ro.37bis and its potential replacement.
 

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...
 

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Jemiba

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Apophenia said:
There was also glazing added to the rear cockpit floor to facilitate observation. Did the 'osservatore' also directly operate the camera, I wonder?

Probably, just as a bomb aimer releases the bombs. But forward view would hardly be helpful then. To me, it looks like a
mission transferred to a trainer version as an afterthought. Windows in the underside probably can be added quite easily.
Have looked for a trainer version of the Re.2000, but without success.
 

Justo Miranda

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Some additional info
 

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Justo Miranda

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Apophenia said:
Apparently, the shape of the glazing of the rear canopy was at the request of the Ministero dell'Aeronautica. There was also glazing added to the rear cockpit floor to facilitate observation. Did the 'osservatore' also directly operate the camera, I wonder?

It is odd that the Direzione del Genio e delle Costruzioni Aeronautiche thought that ricognizione aerea could be performed by an aircraft without rear defence armament. Perhaps it was because the Re.2003 was so much faster than the Ro.37bis it was to replace? But, as cluttonfred noted, that still would not explain why no rear defence for the ground attack role also required of the Ro.37bis and its potential replacement.

Please see ...cameras?...clear windows in the internal part of the flaps
 

Justo Miranda

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Jemiba said:
Apophenia said:
There was also glazing added to the rear cockpit floor to facilitate observation. Did the 'osservatore' also directly operate the camera, I wonder?

Probably, just as a bomb aimer releases the bombs. But forward view would hardly be helpful then. To me, it looks like a
mission transferred to a trainer version as an afterthought. Windows in the underside probably can be added quite easily.
Have looked for a trainer version of the Re.2000, but without success.
Maybe a night fighter variant?
 

Apophenia

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Justo: Thanks for that -- great shot of the glazing in the flaps.

Jemiba said:
... To me, it looks like a mission transferred to a trainer version as an afterthought. Windows in the underside probably can be added quite easily. Have looked for a trainer version of the Re.2000, but without success.

Jens: I agree that the rear glazing looks like that of a trainer but those windows were shaped that way as the result of requested changes by the Ministero dell'Aeronautica. If the Re.2003 had started out as a twin-seat trainer, surely the Ministero request would have resulted a more streamlined arrangement. It seems that they saw some value in the observer having a degree of forward visibility.

In esecuzione ad ulteriori istruzioni emanate dal Ministero, la cabina dell'osservatore venne successivamente modificata per migliorarne la visibilità e vi venne predisposta l'installazione di una macchina fotoqrafica panoramica e di una macchina foto planimetrica.
http://www.alireggiane.com/t338-re-2003

A puzzle for me is why a two-seater was required at all. Why did the Ministero dell'Aeronautica not simply request that the Re.2002 Ariete fighter-bomber be equipped with cameras like single-seat Allied recce fighters of that time?
 

Jemiba

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Apophenia said:
Jens: I agree that the rear glazing looks like that of a trainer but those windows were shaped that way as the result of requested changes by the Ministero dell'Aeronautica. If the Re.2003 had started out as a twin-seat trainer, surely the Ministero request would have resulted a more streamlined arrangement. It seems that they saw some value in the observer having a degree of forward visibility.

The precise wording would be interesting here. Did they really asked for a tandem two seat aircraft with forward view for the observer in the back seat ?
Or did they just ask for good visibility ? A guideline determining a detail that way would be quite uncommon, I think.
 

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