Thursday, May 19, 2011

General Aviation: Catapult Aircraft: Seaplanes that Flew from Ships Without Flight Decks

Catapult Aircraft: Seaplanes that Flew from Ships Without Flight Decks, by Leo Marriott
Pen & Sword Aviation, 2006
157 pages plus Appendices, Bibliography and index
Library: 623.746 MAR

During World War I, the navies of the opposing forces discovered the value of aerial reconnaissance and many experiments were made to allow larger warships to carry one or sometimes two aircraft aboard. In the early days these were float planes that were lowered by crane into the sea and then lifted back aboard upon their return. This was a length affair and when a speedy departure was necessary, time was of the essence. A new system was devised so that a powerful catapult system or a short ramp could, with the added speed of the ship, get an aircraft airborne in a fraction of the time previously required. Thus was born a highly specialized type of aircraft.

This book includes all the major designs that flew in the First and Second World Wars and includes aircraft used by all the combatants. It looks at how the aircraft evolved and how the warships were modified to accommodate the aircraft and the catapult system. Eventually these fixed-wing aircraft were superseded by the helicopter in the early post WW II years.

Table of Contents
1. British and Commonwealth Navies
2. United States Navy
3. Imperial Japanese Navy
4. Germany
5. Italy
6. France
7. Other Nations
Appendix 1: Aircraft and Submarines
Appendix 2: Aircraft Technical Data

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