Eagle Radar

Discussion in 'Radar' started by cptsmith, May 19, 2013.

  1. cptsmith

    cptsmith Member

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    Does anyone have any information on the Eagle Radar used on B17 and B-24's. I believe it is APQ-3 or 7. We have an a B-17 in the hangar that had the modification but nothing is left as it was sectioned for use by the movie studio. The only surviving sign of the mod is the heavy longerons under the cockpit and the rivit pattern for the support fairings. There is a little information on the army air forces site, but I was wondering if there are any detailed pics or diagrams out there.
     
  2. Capt. Vick

    Capt. Vick Well-Known Member

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    #2 Capt. Vick, May 19, 2013
    Last edited: May 20, 2013
    Detail Scale B-17 Volume 2 I believe is where I learned of it myself IIRC. You may want to check there. Or was it the one on the B-29...? Send me a PM if you want me to look. Regards, Jim
     
  3. cptsmith

    cptsmith Member

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    I have seen the D S picture, I was wondering if there are any operational pictures out there or inside the aircraft pics.
     
  4. altsym

    altsym Member

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    #4 altsym, May 26, 2013
    Last edited: May 26, 2013
    B-17s:
    '252 (B-17G 44-6252 PC-A)
    '990 (B-17G 44-6990 PC-O)

    B-24s:
    '189 (B-24M-25-CO 44-42189 SI-x)
    '283 (B-24M-25-CO 44-42283 SI-U)

    482BG Eagle aircraft working list from all sources (not cross-checked yet):
    B-17G-50-DL 44-6252
    B-17G-70-DL 44-6990
    B-17G-70-DL 44-6993
    B-24M-25-CO 44-42189
    B-24M-25-CO 44-42282
    B-24M-25-CO 44-42283
    B-24M-25-CO 44-42291
    B-24M-25-CO 44-42315
    B-24M-25-CO 44-42324

    Purpose
    These aircraft were production B-24s which were modified to mount the AN/APQ-7 Radar, a precision radar bombing system planned as a successor to the H2X and AN/APS-15 systems. The Eagle system was developed at the MIT Radiation Laboratory and was based on the variable waveguide width scanner, conceived by famed scientist Luis Alverez. In the words of one of the scientists who worked on the program, "With normal radar we could target Boston. With Eagle, we could target Boston Common."

    Prototypes
    B-24D 42-40344, already on loan to Wright Field, was chosen as the initial test bed for the system and the first flight of this aircraft with the 16-foot Eagle antenna mounted transversally underneath the plane took place at Westover Field, Utah, on 16 June 1943. The test program was moved to Boca Raton, Florida, in October of 1943 and continued until May of 1944.
    The second test aircraft was B-24J-10-CO 42-73111, which was used for a mockup of the final system configuration. This conversion was accomplished at the American Airlines modification facility at La Guardia Field, New York, and initial flight testing was done there after which the plane went to Boca Raton for bombing trials. A nose wheel failure on takeoff damaged the radar antenna housing and some program delay resulted.
    Both test aircraft were fitted with hand-assembled, pre-production versions of the Eagle. As testing neared completion, 42-73111 was refitted with one of three production prototype versions. The other test plane, 42-40344, continued to serve as a test vehicle for various projects and eventually became the one and only XB-24P.
    There were concurrent Eagle Radar programs for the B-17 and B-29.

    Production
    The Eagle AN/APQ-7 sets were engineered by Bell Laboratories and manufactured by Western Electric, both at that time part of American Telephone and Telegraph Company.
    B-24 aircraft selected for the Eagle Program were from the M series produced at San Diego. The planes were modified at ConVair's Tucson facility. The changes required were very extensive and complex, with the first modifications taking nearly two months work on each plane. As the program progressed this time was reduced to six weeks and then to about four weeks per plane.
    Eagles currently known to the writer were:
    B-24M-20-CO
    44-42189 ETO 482BG 44BG ZI RFC
    44-42222 ETO 482
    44-42223 ETO 482
    44-42231 ETO 482
    B-24M-25-CO
    44-42282 ETO 482 44
    44-42283 ETO 482 44
    44-42291 ETO 482
    44-42297 US
    44-42305 US
    44-42307 US
    44-42308 US
    44-42315 ETO 482
    44-42318 US
    44-42319 MTO
    44-42322 MTO
    44-42324 ETO 482 44
    44-42325 MTO
    44-42332 MTO 455
    44-42340 ETO
    44-42342 MTO
    44-42344 ETO 482
    44-42345 MTO 455
    44-42347 MTO 455
    44-42348 MTO
    B-24M-30-CO
    44-42349 MTO
    44-42354 MTO 459
    44-42357 MTO
    44-42359 MTO 459
    44-42360 MTO
    44-42361 MTO
    44-42365 PAC
    B-24M-35-CO
    44-42417 MTO 459
    B-24M-40-CO
    44-42606

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Capt. Vick

    Capt. Vick Well-Known Member

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    Damn son! Great info!
     
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