Boeing B-52E Stratofortress (Cockpit)
in Hangar 39
The B-52E was a slightly improved version of the B-52D. The E model was virtually identical to the D in outward appearance. Most of the improvements were to internal systems. A new bomb navigation system and an improved Doppler radar system were the major avionics upgrades.
The first of 100 B-52Es ordered was completed in October 1957. The first flight was on the roll out date, in part, because the E model was so similar to the D, there was no need for an extensive ground test program. Boeing and the USAF also used the concurrent rollout/first flight for public relations purposes.
Initial deployment of the B-52E in late 1957 was to the 6th Bomb Wing stationed at Walker Air Force Base. Improvements in surface-to-air missile technology during the late 1950s made high-level penetration of enemy airspace increasingly dangerous. Because of this threat, B-52 combat tactics began to change from high-level penetration missions to standoff weapons delivery.
The AGM-28 Hound Dog missile was the primary air-to-ground missile used beginning in the late 1950s. Two AGM-28s were carried on wing pylons mounted between the fuselage and inboard engine nacelles. The B-52E remained in operational frontline service until the early 1970s when the last aircraft were phased out in favor of more modern models.
First flight on August 4, 1954
Eight Pratt & Whitney J57-P-19W turbojets of 10,500 lbs. thrust each (dry), 12,100 lbs. thrust each wet (water injection)
185 ft. 0 in. (56.4m)
156 ft. 7 in. (47.8m)
48 ft. 4 in. (14.7m)
450,000 lbs. @ maximum takeoff weight (204,117kg)
638 mph/551 knots at 20,000 ft. (6,096m)
526 mph (847 km/ph)
46,200 ft. (14,082m) at combat weight of 293,100 lbs. (132,948kg))
3,305 nautical miles combat radius at combat weight of 293,100 lbs. (without in-flight refueling); 8,338 miles (13,418.7 km) maximum ferry range
Six (pilot, copilot, electronic warfare officer, navigator, bombardier-radar navigator, tail gunner)
Four .50-cal. M-3 machine guns in the tail barbetteand up to 60,000 lbs. of bombs (27,216 kg)