Two Thunderbolts Unite … A-10 & P-47 USAF Heritage Flight!

Thunderbolts - A-10 & P-47This year’s Heritage Flight brings together the robust A-10 Thunderbolt II (a.k.a. “Hog”) and vintage P-47 Thunderbolt. The Air Force Heritage Flight “dramatically displays USAF air power history and honor the brave men and women who have served, or are currently serving, in the USAF.”

That means that you have the opportunity to get up close for amazing photos, PLUS see the A-10 flying. The P-47 comes to us from the Lone Star Flight Museum based out of Ellington Airport!

The A-10 Thunderbolt II

A-10 Thunderbolt II“The A-10 Thunderbolt II has excellent maneuverability at low air speeds and altitude, and is a highly accurate and survivable weapons-delivery platform. The aircraft can loiter near battle areas for extended periods of time and operate in low ceiling and visibility conditions. The wide combat radius and short takeoff and landing capability permit operations in and out of locations near front lines. Using night vision goggles, A-10 pilots can conduct their missions during darkness.
The Thunderbolt II can be serviced and operated from austere bases with limited facilities near battle areas. Many of the aircraft’s parts are interchangeable left and right, including the engines, main landing gear and vertical stabilizers. Avionics equipment includes multi-band communications; Global Positioning System and inertial navigations systems; infrared and electronic countermeasures against air-to-air and air-to-surface threats. And, it has a heads-up display to display flight and weapons delivery information.

The Thunderbolt II can employ a wide variety of conventional munitions, including general purpose bombs, cluster bomb units, laser guided bombs, joint direct attack munitions or JDAM, wind corrected munitions dispenser or WCMD, AGM-65 Maverick and AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles, rockets, illumination flares, and the GAU-8/A 30mm cannon, capable of firing 3,900 rounds per minute to defeat a wide variety of targets including tanks.”

The P-47 Thunderbolt

P-47 Thunderbolt
“Renowned for its ruggedness, firepower and speed, the massive Republic P-47 was one of the most famous and important USAAF fighters during World War II. Produced in larger numbers than any other U.S. fighter, the Thunderbolt — affectionately nicknamed the “Jug” — served as a bomber escort and as a very effective ground attack fighter.
P-47 Origin
Although the P-47 design originated as a small, inline-engine lightweight interceptor, changing requirements drastically altered the project. The considerably larger prototype XP-47B weighed over twice as much as the original concept.

The P-47 Thunderbolt in Combat
The USAAF and several Allied nations used the P-47 in nearly every combat theater. Through 1943 in Europe, the P-47C and P-47D equipped the majority of 8th Air Force fighter groups in England (and one in the 15th Air Force in Italy) as a long-range escort fighter. But since they couldn’t escort USAAF heavy bombers all the way to some targets, longer-ranged P-51 Mustangs gradually replaced them in the escort role (with the sole exception of the 56th Fighter Group). The rugged and heavily-armed P-47D proved to be ideal for ground attack, though, and it became the backbone of the fighter-bomber force in the 9th Air Force in western Europe and the 12th Air Force in southern Europe.”

More About The U.S. Heritage Flight Program

“The U.S. Air Force Heritage Flight (HF) program presents the evolution of USAF air power by flying today’s state-of-the-art fighter aircraft in close formation with vintage fighter aircraft.

An HF performance involves a current USAF fighter piloted by an Air Combat Command trained military HF pilot and flown with a historical warbird piloted by a trained and certified civilian HF pilot. The HF formations of modern fighters flying with World War II, Korean, and Vietnam era fighters such as the P-51 Mustang and F-86 Sabre, dramatically display our U.S. Air Force air power history and proudly support our Air Force’s recruiting and retention efforts. In 2010, the Air Force Heritage Flight Foundation (AFHFF) was formed to keep this popular program flying.”

 

Info Sources / Credit:

http://www.airforceheritageflight.org/

https://www.lonestarflight.org/

http://www.af.mil/About-Us/Fact-Sheets/Display/Article/104490/a-10-thunderbolt-ii/

http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/

Please note: Aircraft and performers are subject to change without notice, due to operational considerations. If anything changes, we will do our best to let you know. Thank you!

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