Skip to content

Convair’s B-58 Hustler — Mach 2 hot and Bendix Trophy cool

23 January 2013

Convair’s B-58 Hustler — Mach 2 hot and Bendix Trophy cool

Bendix Trophy winning crew — photo by Joseph May

Bendix Trophy winning flight crew who were  Capt. Sowers (pilot), Capt. Robert MacDonald (navigator) and Capt . John Walton (Defense Systems Operator) with  Crew Chief MSgt Cockrell — photo by Joseph May

Convair’s B-58 Hustler was a fast mover — a strategic bomber which could fly high and fast or low and fast — more like a fighter aircraft than a conventional bomber. Four afterburning engines and a crew of three flying an aircraft meant to attack at Mach 2 brought challenges beyond the norm. So that crewmen could survive ejection into Mach velocity windstreams each occupied a seat that closed much like a clamshell when the ejection sequence was initiated. Parasitic drag was cleverly reduced with the multi use mission pod slung beneath the fuselage. Fuselage space reserved for fuel and weapons in conventional aircraft was eliminated in the Hustler with the result of having it become leaner and faster upon egressing the target area.

The Hustler on exhibit in the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force also was flown  n a speed run in 1962, called “Operation Heat Rise”, (averaging ~1215 mph/1944kph) across the United States which earned the flight crew the Bendix Trophy.

Bendix Trophy winning Convair B-58 Hustler displayed in the National Museum of the USAF — photo by Joseph May

Bendix Trophy winning Convair B-58 Hustler displayed in the National Museum of the USAF — photo by Joseph May

Bendix Trophy remark — photo by Joseph May

Bendix Trophy remark — photo by Joseph May

A second viewing angle of the Bendix Trophy winning — photo by Joseph May

A second viewing angle of the Bendix Trophy winning — photo by Joseph May

Seven-o-clock aspect angle of the B-58, note the  inert free fall nuclear weapons — photo by Joseph May

Seven-o-clock aspect angle of the B-58, note the inert free fall nuclear weapons and remotely controlled tail gun (stinger)— photo by Joseph May

B-58 Hustler escape pod, one each for each of the three flight crew members — photo by Joseph May

B-58 Hustler escape pod, one each for each of the three flight crew members — photo by Joseph May

Additional fact sheets from the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force are:

B-58 dual purpose free fall weapons and fuel cell pod exhibited at the Castle Air Museum — photo by Joseph May

B-58 dual purpose free fall weapons and fuel cell pod exhibited at the Castle Air Museum — photo by Joseph May

Detail of the B-58 Hustler pod pictured above — photo by Joseph May

Detail of the B-58 Hustler pod pictured above — photo by Joseph May

About these ads
No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 145 other followers

%d bloggers like this: