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 Fairchild 79 / XBQ-3
 
 Fair-XBQ3-01
 
The Fairchild BQ-3, Model 79, was an early expendable unmanned aerial vehicle– referred to at the time as an "assault drone". Development of the BQ-3 began in October, 1942, under a program for the development of "aerial torpedoes" that had been instigated in March of that year. Fairchild was awarded a contract for the construction of two XBQ-3 prototypes, based largely on the AT-21 Gunner advanced gunnery trainer already in United States Army Air Forces service.
 
 Fair-XBQ3-02
XBQ-3 Serial # 43-25253
 
The XBQ-3 was a twin-engined, low-wing aircraft, fitted with retractable tricycle landing gear and a twin-finned empennage; although the aircraft was intended to be operated by radio control with television assist, a two-seat cockpit was included in the design for testing and ferry flights. Power was provided by two Ranger V-770 inline piston engines of 520 horsepower (390 kW) each; up to 4,000 pounds (1,800 kg) of explosives could be carried by the aircraft in unmanned configuration. The aircraft would be destroyed in the act of striking the target.
 
 Fair-XBQ3-03
 
The first flight of the XBQ-3 took place in July 1944; later that month, one of the prototypes was severely damaged in a forced landing. Despite the accident, flight testing continued; however, the assault drone was determined to have no significant advantage over conventional bombers, and advances in the field of guided missiles were rapidly rendering the concept obsolete. As a result, the program was cancelled towards the end of 1944.
 
XBQ-3
Engines: 2 × Ranger V-770-15, 520 hp (390 kW) each
Wingspan: 37 ft (11 m)
Length: 52 ft 8 in (16.05 m)
Height: 31 ft 1 in (9.47 m)
Gross weight: 15,300 lb (6,940 kg)
Maximum speed: 220 mph (350 km/h, 190 kn)
Range: 1,500 mi (2,400 km, 1,300 nmi)
4,000 pounds (1,800 kg) warhead
Crew: 1 (optional)
 
 
 
 


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