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Northrop BT

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This page is a soft redirect.Northrop BT-1s over Miami in October 1939 #REDIRECTmw:Help:Magic words#Other
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BT
Role

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This page is a soft redirect. Dive bomber #REDIRECTmw:Help:Magic words#Other
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Manufacturer

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This page is a soft redirect. Northrop #REDIRECTmw:Help:Magic words#Other
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First flight

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This page is a soft redirect. 19 August 1935 #REDIRECTmw:Help:Magic words#Other
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Primary user

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This page is a soft redirect. United States Navy #REDIRECTmw:Help:Magic words#Other
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Number built

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This page is a soft redirect. 55 #REDIRECTmw:Help:Magic words#Other
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Variants

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The Northrop BT was a two-seat, single-engine monoplane dive bomber built by the Northrop Corporation for the United States Navy. At the time, Northrop was a subsidiary of the Douglas Aircraft Company.

Design and development

The design of the initial version began in 1935. It was powered by a Script error: No such module "convert". Pratt and Whitney XR-1535-66 double row air-cooled radial engine and had hydraulically actuated perforated split flaps or "dive-brakes" and a landing gear that retracted backwards into fairing "trousers" beneath the wings.[1] The perforated flaps were invented to eliminate tail buffeting during diving maneuvers.[1]

The next iteration of the BT, the XBT-1, was equipped with a Script error: No such module "convert". R-1535. This aircraft was followed in 1936 by the BT-1, powered by an Script error: No such module "convert". R-1535-94 engine. One BT-1 was modified with a fixed tricycle landing gear and was the first such aircraft to land on an aircraft carrier.

File:BT-1 5-B-10 NAN6-61.jpg
BT-1 of VB-5 in 1938

The final variant, the XBT-2, was a BT-1 modified[1] to incorporate landing gear which folded laterally into recessed wheel wells, leading edge slots, a redesigned canopy, and was powered by an Script error: No such module "convert". Wright XR-1820-32 radial. The XBT-2 first flew on 25 April 1938 and after successful testing the Navy placed an order for 144 aircraft. In 1939 the aircraft designation was changed to the Douglas SBD-1 with the last 87 on order completed as SBD-2s. By this point, Northrop had become the El Segundo division of Douglas aircraft, hence the change.

Operational history

The U.S. Navy placed an order for 54 BT-1s in 1936 with the aircraft entering service during 1938. BT-1s served in USS Yorktown and Enterprise. The type was not a success in service due to poor handling characteristics, especially at low speeds, "a fatal flaw in a carrier based aircraft."[2] It was also prone to unexpected rolls and a number of aircraft were lost in crashes.

Variants

XBT-1
Prototype, one built.
BT-1
Production variant, 54 built.
XBT-2
One BT-1 modified with fully retractable landing gear and other modifications.
BT-2
Production variant of the XBT-2, 144 on order completed as SBD-1 and SBD-2.
Douglas DB-19
One BT-1 was modified as the DB-19 which was tested by the Imperial Japanese Navy as the DXD1 (Navy Experimental Type D Attack Plane)

Operators

23x15px United States

Specifications (BT-1)

File:Northrop BT-1 tricycle.jpg
BT-1 modified as a testbed for tricycle landing gear

Data from United States Navy Aircraft since 1911 [3]

General characteristics

Performance

  • Guns:
    • 1 × .50 in (12.7 mm) machine gun
    • 1 × .30 in (7.62 mm) machine gun
  • Bombs: 1,000 lb (454 kg) bomb under fuselage
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Notable mentions in media

Northrop BT-1s appeared in pre-war yellow wing paint schemes in the Technicolor film Dive Bomber (1941) starring Errol Flynn.

See also

Related development
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era

Related lists

References

Notes
  1. ^ a b c Rene J. Francillon (1990 ed), McDonnell Douglas Since 1920, Volume I. Annapolis, Maryland, Naval Institute Press
  2. ^ "Northrop BT-1." historyofwar.org. Retrieved: 5 December 2009.
  3. ^ Swanborough and Bowers 1976, p. 358.
Bibliography
  • Bowers, Peter M. United States Navy Aircraft since 1911. Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1990, ISBN 0-87021-792-5.
  • Brazelton, David. The Douglas SBD Dauntless, Aircraft in Profile 196. Leatherhead, Surrey, UK: Profile Publications Ltd., 1967. No ISBN.
  • Drendel, Lou. U.S. Navy Carrier Bombers of World War II. Carrollton, TX: Squadron/Signal Publications, Inc., 1987. ISBN 0-89747-195-4.
  • Gunston, Bill. The Illustrated History of McDonnell Douglas Aircraft: From Cloudster to Boeing. London: Osprey Publishing, 1999. ISBN 1-85532-924-7.
  • Kinzey, Bert. SBD Dauntless in Detail & Scale, D&S Vol.48. Carrollton, TX: Squadron/Signal Publications, Inc., 1996. ISBN 1-888974-01-X.
  • Listemann, Phil. Northrop BT-1 (Allied Wings No.3). France: www.raf-in-combat.com, 2008. ISBN 2-9526381-7-9.
  • Swanborough, Gordon and Peter M. Bowers. United States Navy Aircraft since 1911. London: Putnam, Second edition, 1976. ISBN 0-370-10054-9.
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External links