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Royeaux

Airborne Aircraft Carrier Concept

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In 1931 and 1935, the US Navy experimented with the Aircraft Carrier Concept with the USS Akron and USS Macon.

USS-Macon-Airship-1600x928.jpg

In the early 1970s, Boeing conducted a study under a contract from the USAF for an airborne aircraft carrier for up to 10 Boeing Model 985-121 "microfighters", with the ability to launch, retrieve, re-arm, and refuel the microfighters. Boeing believed that the scheme would be able to deliver a flexible and fast carrier platform with global reach, particularly where other bases were not available. Modified versions of the 747-200 and Lockheed C-5A were considered as the base aircraft. The concept, which included a complementary 747 AWACS version with two reconnaissance "microfighters", was considered technically feasible in 1973.

 

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On 4/20/2019 at 2:10 AM, Royeaux said:

In 1931 and 1935, the US Navy experimented with the Aircraft Carrier Concept with the USS Akron and USS Macon.

USS-Macon-Airship-1600x928.jpg

In the early 1970s, Boeing conducted a study under a contract from the USAF for an airborne aircraft carrier for up to 10 Boeing Model 985-121 "microfighters", with the ability to launch, retrieve, re-arm, and refuel the microfighters. Boeing believed that the scheme would be able to deliver a flexible and fast carrier platform with global reach, particularly where other bases were not available. Modified versions of the 747-200 and Lockheed C-5A were considered as the base aircraft. The concept, which included a complementary 747 AWACS version with two reconnaissance "microfighters", was considered technically feasible in 1973.

 

The reason the concept failed/was never adopted is because at least here in the US the Shenandoah, Akron and Macon showed how vulnerable Airships were to extreme weather. Also it's already difficult and dangerous enough to land on a carrier in a jet fighter and preform a mid-air refueling, imagine how dangerous it would be to try and hook onto another plane. 

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Don't forget the XF-85 Goblin of the 1950's...

029b552a721032838b707fffc74df8b7.jpg

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2 hours ago, Murotsu said:

Don't forget the XF-85 Goblin of the 1950's...

029b552a721032838b707fffc74df8b7.jpg

Oh the video goes into all the concepts, including the bonkers wing docked fighters on the bomber.

2607541670_6c44867062.jpg

Edited by Royeaux

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The concept was tried in several different ways, connections, and formations.

 

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It really just isn't a viable concept.

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