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Republic P-47D Thunderbolt

History of the P-47D Thunderbolt

The P-47 nicknamed the “Jug,” served as a bomber escort and ground attack aircraft during World War II. Over the course of production, the P-47Ds were greatly improved with increased climb rate and speed, greater internal fuel capacity and new wing mounts for drop tanks or bombs.

Republic P-47D Thunderbolt

Serial Number: 44-32798

Manufacturer: The Republic Aviation Corporation

Crew: One

Engines: One Pratt & Whitney R2800 Double Wasp eighteen-cylinder radial; 2,500 horsepower

Wingspan: 40 feet 9 3/8 inches

Length: 36 feet 1 3/4 inches

Height: 14 feet 7 inches

Weight: 10,700 pounds (empty); 13,500 pounds (maximum)

Speed: 260 mph (cruising); 433 mph at 30,000 feet (maximum)

Range: 950 miles without external fuel

Service Ceiling: 40,000 feet

Armament: Eight .50-caliber machine guns and ten 5-inch rockets or 1,500 pounds of bombs

Cost: $83,000

The P-47D Thunderbolt at Hill Air Force Base

During World War II, Hill Air Force Base maintained, repaired, rehabilitated and stored many Thunderbolt aircraft and their engines. The P-47D on display was manufactured in 1944 and served on bases all over the United States. In 2003, this aircraft was recovered from a salvage yard and brought to Hinckley Airport in Ogden, Utah, for restoration. In 2007, it was put on display at Hill Aerospace Museum.

Was the P-47 the best fighter of WWII?

An exceedingly difficult argument, the Thunderbolt was widely considered one of the toughest aircraft of the Second World War, able to carry 3,000 pounds of external ordnance, including eight .50 caliber guns.

Are there any P-47s still flying?

Of the original 15,636, only 24 Thunderbolts are still considered airworthy.

How was the P-47 used?

The P-47 was developed as a fighter and fighter-bomber in both the European and Pacific fronts.

How many aircraft did the P-47 shoot down?

It is reported in the European Theater alone, some 7,000 aircraft were destroyed, with more than half being destroyed in air-to-air combat.

Which was the strongest plane in WWII?

Fully loaded, the P-47 weighed up to 8 tons, making it the heaviest fighter of WWII.