FAIRCHILD A-10 THUNDERBOLT II
Title: Fairchild A-10 Thunderbolt II
The A-10A, officially called “Thunderbolt II” but known more commonly by its unofficial name of “Warthog”, was the first jet aircraft designed specifically for the close air support mission. The A-10 was one of two designs selected after an initial design contest, and subsequently beat the other contender the Northrop YA-9 to the production contract after a fly-off competition.
The initial YA-10 first flew in 1972. The production aircraft first flew in 1975 with deliveries to the USAF commencing in 1976. Production ended in 1984 after 715 aircraft had been built.
The A-10 was designed for maneuverability at low speeds and altitudes, good field performance, but especially for protection from small arms fire. The pilot sits in a titanium “bathtub” and there is multiple redundancy of systems and structure. The aircraft had minimal avionics and was built around a huge 30 mm gatling cannon. The large rounds and massive rate of fire means the aircraft can destroy a heavily armed battle tank in as few as six direct hits. Only short bursts can be fired to
protect the barrels from overheating, but also due to the massive recoil of the weapon.
The files have been scanned from the original manuals and retain any colour pages.