Posts: 1299
Joined: Wed Apr 24, 2002 8:04 pm

Big Wing RB-57's

Tue Oct 19, 2004 1:45 am

There were two versions of the Martin B-57, license built English Electric Canberra, built with extremely large wings for high altitude operation, the RB-57D and the RB-57F.
The main purpose of these airplanes was strategic reconnaisance in a similar role as the U-2.
Currently at the U. S. Air Force Museum, a two seat RB-57D is being assembled in the Kettering Cold War Gallery. As of this past weekend, the main components not yet installed on the airplane were its two P&WA J-57's. The standard Martin B-57 was equipped with 2 Curtiss-Wright J-65's, which were license built Bristol-Siddley Sapphires.
Here are a couple of links to pages with information on the RB-57D.
Posts: 9576
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2003 7:09 am

RE: Big Wing RB-57's

Tue Oct 19, 2004 7:05 am

I remember seeing the RB-57F crews mount up at Albrook AFB in the Canal Zone. They wore pressure suits with the snap ring for their helmets. Looked like astronauts walking out to the van that took them from Ops to the planes. When that thing took off you'd just see the top of it as it climbed out of sight. Awesome climb angle. Never did see which direction they took as they went out on course. I had a best guess though.

Friend of mine had a camera hatch blow out of the RB-57D at some extreme altitude. Believe that the cabin altitude caught up with him in the high thirties as he was on his way down.

Happiness is not seeing another trite Ste. Maarten photo all week long.
Posts: 942
Joined: Sun Oct 19, 2003 1:58 pm

RE: Big Wing RB-57's

Tue Oct 19, 2004 10:51 am

I was glad to see the RB-57 parts going into place when I visited the museum on Oct 2. Although the new hangar gallery is dark, my photos turned out okay for my purposes.
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