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CONVAIR RB-58A

Posted 7/8/2009 Printable Fact Sheet
 
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Convair RB-58A Hustler
Convair RB-58A Hustler 3/4 front view (S/N 58-1011). Note the two component pod (TCP) being assembled. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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The last 17 service test B-58 aircraft were completed as RB-58A reconnaissance bombers. Of the 30 pre-production aircraft ordered, nearly all carried two, three or even four different designations during their service life. The RB-58As were ordered as YB-58A, but redesignated RB-58A on the production line. These aircraft were intended to carry a reconnaissance pod, but most were used in test programs along with the XB-58 and YB-58A aircraft.

Most of the RB-58As were brought up to B-58A production standards and used in operational units. One RB-58A was converted to a TB-58A trainer, one aircraft was retained for static stress and fatigue testing, and three aircraft were destroyed in test program crashes between 1958 and 1960.


Type Number built/
converted
Remarks
RB-58A 17 Reconnaissance variant


TECHNICAL NOTES:
Armament: Designed for one 20mm cannon in tail; nuclear weapons in pod or on under-wing pylons (some RB-58As were armed, after conversion to B-58A standards)
Engines: Four General Electric J79-GE-5or -5A turbojets of 15,600 lbs. thrust each with afterburner
Maximum speed: 1,325 mph
Cruising speed: 610 mph
Range: 4,400 miles maximum ferry range
Service ceiling: 64,800 ft.
Span: 56 ft. 10 in.
Length: 96 ft. 10 in.
Height: 31 ft. 5 in.
Weight: 163,000 lbs. maximum
Crew: Three (pilot, navigator/bombardier, defensive systems operator)
Serial numbers: 58-1007 to 58-1023

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