National Museum of the USAF   Right Corner Banner
Join the Air Force

Home > Fact Sheets > B-36 Remote Gun Turret

B-36 REMOTE GUN TURRET

Posted 1/14/2009 Printable Fact Sheet
 
Photos 
B-36 Remote Gun Turret
DAYTON, Ohio -- B-36 remote gun turret on display in the Cold War Gallery at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)
Download HiRes

Early models of the B-36 Peacemaker intercontinental bomber relied on concentrated fire from multiple gun turrets for protection from fighters. This concept had been used in World War II bombers, and the B-36 was the last U.S. bomber to employ massed gun turrets for defense.

Early B-36s had six turrets like the General Electric model on display, which mounts two M24 20mm cannon. Separate gunners operated each turret by remote control in individual sighting stations. When not in use, turrets retracted into the Peacemaker's fuselage to cut wind resistance and save fuel, thus preserving the bomber's great range. A turret in the tail was radar-aimed and nonretractable. The nose also had a nonretractable turret.

Reliability and aiming problems made the gun system troublesome. Finally the B-36 "Featherweight program" removed the heavy guns and protected the aircraft instead with speed, maneuverability and altitude. Only the tail turret remained for protection from the rear. All B-36s eventually were converted to Featherweights.

Click here to return to the Cold War Gallery.







 Inside the Museum

ima cornerSearch

ima cornerHistoric

 


tabCategories
tabRelated Links
tabConnect

Museum Virtual TourMuseum Facebook PageMuseum Twitter PageMuseum Google Plus PageMuseum Pinterest Page
Museum YouTube ChannelMuseum Flickr PageMuseum PodcastsMuseum E-newsletter Sign-upMuseum RSS Feeds



Site Map      Contact Us     Questions     USA.gov     Security and Privacy notice     E-publishing  
Suicide Prevention    SAPR   IG   EEO   Accessibility/Section 508   No FEAR Act