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World War II
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Martin B-26 Marauder Bombers in flight Martin B-26 Marauder Bombers in flight
A group of Martin B-26 Marauder Bombers in flight.
 
 
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Martin Marauder B-26B bomber in flight Martin Marauder B-26B bomber in flight
Martin Marauder B-26B bomber in flight, "A Kay Pros Dream"
 
 
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Messerschmitt Me 163 Komet, rocket-powered interceptor Messerschmitt Me 163 Komet, rocket-powered interceptor
 One of the most remarkable of the Wunderwaffen (wonder weapons) produced by the Nazi Germany during World War II, the Messerschmitt Me 163 Komet holds the distinction of being the first and only tailless rocket-powered interceptor to see operational service.  Like the other advanced weapons fielded by Germany during the final year of World War II, the Me 163 had little actual effect on the outcome of the war. Considering the conditions under which it was developed and deployed, however, the Me 163 can be rightly considered a significant technological accomplishment.
 
 
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Messerschmitt Me 163A, rocket-powered interceptor Messerschmitt Me 163A, rocket-powered interceptor
 Me 163-A Komet, with J.G. 400, in hanger, designed by Alexander Martin Lippisch, was the only operational rocket-powered fighter aircraft during the Second World War. Although revolutionary and capable of performance unrivalled at the time, it proved dangerous to operate and resulted in the destruction of very few Allied aircraft.
 
 
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Messerschmitt Me 163B, rocket-powered aircraft Messerschmitt Me 163B, rocket-powered aircraft
 The Me 163 Komet, designed by Alexander Martin Lippisch, was the only operational rocket-powered fighter aircraft during the Second World War. The Me 163B Komet have the newer HWK 109-509 hot engine, using a hypergolic fuel formula, which added a true fuel of hydrazine hydrate and methanol, designated C-Stoff, that burned with the oxygen-rich exhaust from the T-Stoff, used as the oxidizer, for added thrust. (See List of Stoffs.) This resulted in the significantly modified Me 163B of late 1941.  Two prototypes were followed by thirty Me 163B-0 aircraft armed with two MG 151/20 cannon and some four hundred Me 163B-1s armed with two MK 108 cannon, but which were otherwise similar to the B-0.
 
 
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Messerschmitt Me 262 Messerschmitt Me 262
 Captured Messerschmitt Me 262 on runway.
 
 
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Messerschmitt Me 262 surrendered to US forces Messerschmitt Me 262 surrendered to US forces
Messerschmitt Me 262 surrendered to US forces on March 30th, 1945 by Hans Fay, a company pilot for Messerschmitt.
 
 
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Messerschmitt Me 262 with US Air Corps markings Messerschmitt Me 262 with US Air Corps markings
 Captured Messerschmitt Me 262 with US Air Corps markings.
 
 
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Messerschmitt Me 262, world's first jet fighter Messerschmitt Me 262, world's first jet fighter
 The Messerschmitt Me 262 Schwalbe (German: "Swallow") was the world's first operational turbojet fighter aircraft. It was produced in World War II and saw action starting in 1944 as a multi-role fighter / bomber / reconnaissance / interceptor warplane for the Luftwaffe. It was officially named Schwalbe because the swallow, when in a dive, is one of the fastest birds known.    German pilots nicknamed it the "Turbo," while the Allies called it the "Stormbird." While the Me 262 had a negligible impact on the course of the war, with 509 claimed Allied kills, (although higher claims are sometimes made) for more than 100 Me 262 losses, its design had a strong influence on postwar aircraft development. This Messerschmitt Me 262 surrendered to US forces on March 30th, 1945 by Hans Fay, a company pilot for Messerschmitt.
 
 
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Messerschmitt Me-262 "Worlds First Jet Aircraft" Messerschmitt Me-262 "Worlds First Jet Aircraft"
 World War II saw the introduction of jet aircraft, and one of the most prominent jets of the conflict was the "Messerschmitt Me-262", a twin-jet fighter of advanced design. The Me-262 was recognized after the war as generally superior to anything the Allies had, and helped point the way to postwar aircraft development.
 
 
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NACA P-51 Mustang NACA P-51 Mustang
NACA North American's P-51 Mustang at Langley Field, Virginia.
 
 
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North American B-25 in flight North American B-25 in flight
Formation of North American B-25H, with the 1st Air Commandos Group.
 
 
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North American P-51 North American P-51
 North American P-51D prototype in flight, "SN 43-12102" Modified P-51B, this is the first P-51D test plane..
 
 
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North American P-51 Mustang North American P-51 Mustang
North American P-51 Mustang fighter plane over France.
 
 
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North American XP-51 "Mustang" Test Plane North American XP-51 "Mustang" Test Plane
 Very rare North American XP-51 "Mustang" test plane, "SN 41-039," this is the second XP-51 test aircraft built. The North American P-51 Mustang was one of the most famous fighter aircraft during World War II.
 
 
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P-38 Recon Version "F-5B-1" P-38 Recon Version "F-5B-1"
Lockheed P-38 Lightning F-5B recon version. The F-5B-1 was converted from the P-38 J, and was first to be fitted with the Sperry Autopilot System. Many camera configurations were allowed, but the most common was the two 6 inch K-17 oblique cameras and 12 or 24 inch K-17 vertical with a 24 inch K-18 vertical camera in the rear section. Rare plane.
 
 
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P-40 Warhawk with "Aleutian Tigers" P-40 Warhawk with "Aleutian Tigers"
 Curtiss P-40E Warhawk assigned to the 11th Fighter Squadron of the 343rd Fighter Group, "Aleutian Tigers," June, 1943. The group operated in Alaska from mid 1942 to fall 1943, known as the "Aleutian Tigers" it was commanded by John "Jack" Chennault the son of General Claire Chennault who commanded the Flying Tigers in China. This photo is from the National Archives and is in the public domain.
 
 
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P-40 Warhawks "Flying Tigers" 354th Fighter Group P-40 Warhawks "Flying Tigers" 354th Fighter Group
 Curtis P-40 Warhawks "Flying Tigers" with the 354th Fighter Group in China, June, 1942.
 
 
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P-51 Mustang with 357th Fighter Group P-51 Mustang with 357th Fighter Group
 North American P-51B Mustang "SN 43-6999" of the 357th Fighter Group, note the wingtip damage.
 
 
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P-51 Mustang with rocket launcher P-51 Mustang with rocket launcher
 P-51 Mustang with M9 rocket launcher under each wing. This photo is from the National Archives and is in the public domain.
 
 
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P-51 Mustangs prepare for take-off P-51 Mustangs prepare for take-off
 North American P-51B Mustang with D-Day markings, prepare for take-off to meet up with US bombers over Europe. The P-51B Mustang are with 361st FG, 376th FS, planes includes SN 42-106707 Sleepy Time Gal and SN 42-106945 marked E9V.
 
 
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PBY-5 Catalina patrol seaplane, Aleutians PBY-5 Catalina patrol seaplane, Aleutians
 PBY-5A of VP-51, Fleet Air Wing 4 (FAW-4). Commanded by US Navy Captain Leslie Gehres, FAW-4 consisted of three squadrons of Consolidated PBY Catalina patrol seaplanes. On March 15, 1943, FAW-4 headquarters moved westward from Kodiak to Adak, just before the Battle of Komandorski Islands on March 27, 1943. VP-51 was commanded by Cdr. Turner Day, Aleutians, Alaska.
 
 
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RAF Spitfires on patrol, North Africa RAF Spitfires on patrol, North Africa
 A formation of Supermarine Spitfires on interception patrol over De Djerba Island, on their way to the Mareth Line area during operations in North Africa by Allied air forces, 1942.
 
 
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RAF Stirling bombers in formation RAF Stirling bombers in formation
 Three RAF Stirling bombers in formation over France. The Stirling was the first four-engined British heavy bomber of  World War II.
 
 
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Republic P-47 Thunderbolt Republic P-47 Thunderbolt
Republic P-47 Thunderbolt in flight, support for the 12th Air Force .  
 
 
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Republic P-47 Thunderbolt Republic P-47 Thunderbolt
Republic P-47 Thunderbolt.
 
 
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Short Sunderland Mk 1  Short Sunderland Mk 1
Short Sunderland Mk 1, in flight over England, 1940.
 
 
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Spitfire in flight over France, 1944 Spitfire in flight over France, 1944
British Supermarine Spitfire banks in clouds over France. May 1944.
 
 
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Spitfire with D-Day markings, June 5, 1944 Spitfire with D-Day markings, June 5, 1944
Supermarine Spitfire receives its D-Day markings at Sussex, England. June 5, 1944,
 
 
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Spitfires with the 611 Squadron Spitfires with the 611 Squadron
Spitfires with the 611 Squadron take off from field at Woodvale, England.
 
 
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