Loughead Aircraft Manufacturing Company
Lockheed Aircraft Company
Of the Loughead three brothers-Victor (the oldest), Allan and Malcolm, Allan started as a mechanic for a local aviation enthusiast who owned a Curtiss pusher, and he soon became a barnstormer and flight in-structor.
Allan and Malcolm Loughead built their first aircraft, the Model G seaplane, in 1913.
With Malcolm, he formed the Loughead Aircraft Manufacturing Company at Santa Barbara, California, in 1916,
Built the F-1 twin-engined flying-boat in 1918, and the S-1 monocoque fuselage biplane in 1919.
Loughead Aircraft Manufacturing Company survived until the end of World War 1, when thousands of surplus aircraft and engines flooded the market. Malcolm left to join the automobile industry. The original Lockheed Com-pany built the moulded-plywood S-1 sports plane. It could not compete with cheap war-surplus aircraft, and the company suspended manufac-ture in 1920 and was liquidated in 1921.
In 1926, Allan refounded the Lockheed Aircraft Company of Hollywood, and with a young designer, John K. Northrop, soon turned out a radical all-wood, monocoque, cantilever monoplane - the Lockheed Vega from 1925, a fast two-seater intended for airline work. 141 were built between 1925 and 1932.
Company moved to Burbank 1928. Vega gave rise to low-wing series of transports, the Altair/Orion/Sirius, differing in seating arrangements. Many records and notable flights performed on these aircraft.
In 1929, Lockheed came under the control of the Detroit Aircraft Corpora-tion, then came the Depression. The company went into receivership and, in partnership with Carl Squier a Lloyd Stear-man, Robert Gross bought the assets in 1932 for $40,000.
Lockheed brothers had left the company, formed Lockheed Brothers Aircraft Corporation Company purchased by Robert E. Cross and Lloyd Stearman for a consortium, resumed trading under old name.
Launched a new series of twin-engined transports, starting with the Lockheed 10A Electra. To-gether with Stearman and a young de-signer, Hall Hibbard, Gross supervised development of the Lockheed 10 - the original Electra. If the project failed, the company would surely collapse. Midway through the development, wind-tunnel tests revealed that the plane had insufficient rudder control. Working in a wind tunnel at the University of Michigan, a young graduate student modified the design and added a twin tail. It solved the problem, and Gross, recognizing talent, immediately hired the student. His name was Clarence "Kelly" Johnson.
In 1934, the Lockheed 10 Electra flew.
In 1937 the L-14 Super Electra appeared, a smaller executive version of the L-10A. RAF bought 250 bomber variants of 14, called Hudson, in 1938. L-18 Lodestar flew 1939, a lengthened and more powerful Model 14.
The Lockheed P-38 Lightning of 1939, introduced as a high-altitude interceptor, had worldwide use, mainly as ground-attack and fighter-bomber aircraft.
In 1939 TWA formulated a requirement for a long-range transport and C. L. Johnson designed the 558km/h Constellation, which first flew in 1943. First 22 requisitioned as military transports. Built up to 1958 in increasingly powerful, larger-capacity and longer-range versions.
Ventura of 1941 was a bomber variant of Model 18. Naval PV-1 came in 1942 and the torpedo-carrying PV-2 Harpoon in 1943. Success of the Harpoon led to long-range Neptune, main equipment of patrol squadrons 1947-1962.
First flight August 1954 of C-130 Hercules tactical military turboprop transport, later also produced in commercial form; delivered from 1956 and remaining in production in 1999 in latest C-130J form with fully integrated digital avionics, advanced engines and propellers, and other improvements (well over 2,200 Hercules transports built).
Company also produced the four-turboprop Electra airliner (first flown December 1957) and derived P-3 Orion long-range maritime patrol/reconnaissance aircraft (first flown August 1958, and remaining in production in the U.S.A. until 1995, although Japanese Kawasaki-built examples continued in production).
C-130 followed by much larger strategic C-141 StarLifter transport (first flown December 1963) and C-5A Galaxy (first flown June 1968) which, at 348,810kg gross weight and with a span of 67.88m, was then the world's largest operational aircraft; C-5B followed for USAF and two C-5As modified to carry outsized space cargoes as C-5Cs.
First U.S. jet fighter was Lockheed P-80 Shooting Star (first flown January 1944) which later saw service in Korea. F-104 of 1954 was smallest-span-ever American service aircraft (wings spanned 6.7m) and first fighter capable of sustained Mach 2.0. Saw widespread service as part of U.S. offshore arms and aid deals. Subsequent activities included CP-140 Aurora for Canada as a development of the Orion ;S-3 Viking carrier-borne anti-submarine aircraft (first flown January 1972 and later also used by the U.S. Navy in ES-3A electronic reconnaissance and signals/ communications intelligence, and US-3A carrier onboard delivery variants); and L-1011 TriStar widebodied airliner (first flown November 1970).
A secret "Skunk Works" at Palmdale, California, was responsible for the military U-2 Dragon Lady spyplane (first flown August 1955), A-12 Mach 3.6 strategic reconnaissance aircraft sponsored by the CIA (first flown April 1962) and developed into the YF-12 interceptor and fully operational SR-71A Mach 3+ strategic reconnaissance aircraft for the USAF, and the F-117A stealth fighter for subsonic night attack on priority targets (first flown June 1981), among other types.
In September 1977 Lockheed Aircraft Corporation took new name Lockheed Corporation.
The Tactical Military Aircraft division of General Dynamics bought by Lockheed Corporation in March 1993, becoming Lockheed Fort Worth Company. In March 1995 Lockheed Corporation merged with Martin Marietta to form Lockheed Martin Corporation. Intended merger with Northrop Grumman, announced in July 1997, did not take place. Company set-up then included Lockheed Martin Tactical Aircraft Systems in charge of F-16 production and updates and part of the F-22 program; Lockheed Martin Aeronautical Systems tasked with F-22, military transport and maritime patrol aircraft work, plus production and support of C-130 and P-3; and Lockheed Martin Skunk Works which undertakes advanced, secret and innovative design/development, work including support and improvement of F-117A, U-2 / TR-1, X-33 reusable launch vehicle and more. There are many other divisions.
1990 Lockheed Martin programs include continued production of the F-16 fighter and C-130 transport, development and production of the F-22 Raptor air dominance fighter (first flown September 1990, with first flight of an engineering and manufacturing development aircraft September 1997, and deliveries of full production to start to USAF in 2002 to allow initial operational capability in 2005); and development in association with Northrop Grumman and BAe of Joint Strike Fighter for U.S. forces.