American Aircraft Development – World War Two Legacy

1945-1953 and the Korean War

William Norton

This volume details the influence of Second World War aviation development, experience and subsequent technological advances in shaping American choices in military aircraft development and weapons. It shows how air warfare weapons were carried forward and altered, how new systems evolved from these, and how the choices fared in the next war—Korea.
Date Published :
February 2022
Publisher :
Fonthill Media
Illustration :
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Hardback
ISBN : 9781781558287
Pages : 512
Dimensions : 9.75 X 6.75 inches
Stock Status : In stock


This volume focuses on the influence of America’s Second World War aviation development and experience, subsequent aviation technological advances, and world events, in shaping American choices in military aircraft and associated weapons development during the few years following the war. It shows how air warfare weapons from the last conflict were carried forward and altered, how new systems evolved from these, and how the choices fared in the next war—Korea. The period was one of remarkable progress in a short span of time via a great many aircraft and weapons programs, and associated technological progress. These systems were of immense importance influencing and growing the engineering, production, and operational capabilities to be exploited for the next generation of weapons that soon followed. Emphasized is the innovative features or new technology and how these contributed to advancing American military aviation, influencing the evolution of follow-on models or types. Included are military prototype, experimental, and research aircraft that are equally important in understanding the history of American aircraft development. Combat employment, progress, and equipment adaptation during the Korean Conflict is then highlighted. Tabulated characteristics are provided of those aircraft that entered production or represented significant technological advances influencing others that follow.

About The Author

William J. Norton is a flight test engineer, continuing a career begun during 20 Years as a US Air Force officer where he also served as aircrew on test aircraft. Bill has held numerous positions in many organizations on dozens of aerospace programs spanning all aircraft types. He has penned scores of technical papers, fourteen books, and a multitude of magazine articles. Bill is a civil pilot with numerous ratings, restored and operates a Dhc-1 Chipmunk, and built a Rutan Long-Ez. He holds a Masters in aeronautical engineering. Bill is happily married to the lovely and talented Anya Victoria Eriksson.


Acronyms and Abbreviations

1 Altered Landscape
2 Flight Research
3 Mission Imperatives
4 Fighters Evolve
5 Second Generation Fighters
6 Deviant Fighters
7 Bombers Transform
8 Transport and Assault
9 Helicopters Ascend
10 Sea Missions
11 Special Types
12 Aerial Weapons
13 The Test-Korea
14 Precipitous



"...a great compilation of extensive information on propeller aircraft, jets, hybrids, helicopters, seaplanes, gliders, and dirigibles."

- Historical Miniatures Gaming Society

"Norton thoughtfully includes a comprehensive glossary. This helps readers who are unfamiliar with aeronautical concepts better understand the impact of changes in design, particularly those caused by more powerful power-plants leading to supersonic performance."

- Air & Space Power History

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