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Convair 7 / XF-92A



The Convair Model 7 submission was ordered in prototype form as the XF-92 to be powered by a 1600-lb (726-kg) thrust Westinghouse 130 turbojet supplemented for take-off and combat by a 6000-lb (2722-kg) thrust Reaction Motors LR-11 liquid-propellant rocket. This was a tailless delta type with mixed powerplant, and its wing was designed with the aid of Dr Alexander Lippisch. This would have been a very fast point-defence interceptor with exceedingly limited range and duration.

Validation of the basic design’s 60 degree swept delta wing (complete with full-span elevons for pitch and roll control) was entrusted to a smaller-scale aeroplane, the Model 7-002, which used components from five other aircraft and was powered by an Allison J33-A-23 turbojet. The Model 7-002 was generally successful, and development of the XF-92 proceeded without undue problems. In June 1949 the XF-92 was cancelled, but the Model 7-002 was kept in development as the XF-92A high-speed research aeroplane. Re-engined with the 6800-lb (3084-kg) J33-A-29 afterburning turbojet, the XF-92A eventually reached a speed of Mach 0.95 at 40,000-ft (12,190-rn). Meanwhile the LTSAF was completing the competition for the fire-control system originally specified for the XF-92, and this was later installed in the modestly supersonic F-102 Delta Dagger interceptor that was evolved as the Convair Model 8 on the aerodynamic basis of the XF-92A with the advanced Pratt & Whitney J57 afterburning turbojet.
The Convair made its first flight on 8 June 1948, This was a simple airplane with latticed canopy cover, nose air inlet, and through-flow arrangement for its 2358kg thrust Allison J33-A-23 turbojet. Its delta wing was swept 60 degrees. When the fully-fledged rocket-powered XF-92 design was cancelled because of its obviously limited military application, the model 7002 was redesignated XF-92A.
The XF-92A originally flew without afterburning. During continuing tests at Edwards AFB it was re-engined and its fuselage lengthened to provide reheat for the new 3402kg afterburning thrust Allison J33-A-29. At the same time, the natural-metal XF-92A was painted gloss white.
Always a research aircraft rather than a fighter, the XF-92A was turned over to NACA for tests before its flight career ended in 1953.
Since it had been intended only as a flying mock-up for the cancelled machine, the XF-92A was never a candidate for a production order, though it performed valuable, if unintended, service as a testbed for the company's F-102 interceptor.

Engine: 1 x 3402kg afterburning thrust Allison J33-A-29 turbojet
Max take-off weight: 6800 kg / 14992 lb
Wingspan: 9.5 m / 31 ft 2 in
Length: 12.9 m / 42 ft 4 in
Wing area: 39.0 sq.m / 419.79 sq ft
Max. speed: 1000 km/h / 621 mph
Crew: 1




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