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  • Savoia-Marchetti SM.92 Heavy Fighter Prototype Aircraft

    The Savoia-Marchetti SM.92 was an Italian World War 2 attempt at producing a twin-fuselage heavy fighter.

     Updated: 5/31/2017; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ¬©www.MilitaryFactory.com

    The conjoining of two airframes to produce an all-new design was a somewhat common occurrence throughout World War 2 (1939-1945) - the Americans and Germans both attempted it through several notable designs. The benefits to such design work was in increased range, firepower and straightline performance though often at the cost of maneuverability, weight and valuable war material. One of the classic examples of this conjoining became the North American F-82 "Twin Mustang" of the United States which mated the bodies of two P-51 fighters along a common central wing mainplane element and tail stabilizer. One of the lesser-known of the conjoined fighter developments of the war became an Italian design - the twin-engine, twin-boom, two-crew Savoia-Marchetti SM.92 - a heavy fighter based on the earlier twin-engine, single-boom, three-crew SM.88 of which only one was built. Like the SM.88, the SM.92 was also only seen in one completed example in 1943 which was destroyed before the end of the war by an Allied air raid.

    The SM.92 utilized an asymmetric cockpit arrangement in which the two crew were seated in tandem under a shared canopy within the portside fuselage (as opposed to having two individual cockpits, one in each fuselage as in the F-82). The two crewmen consisted of the pilot and a dedicated rear gunner. Both fuselages included a Daimler-Benz DB 605 series liquid-cooled supercharged inverted V12 engine (1,290 horsepower each) at their front (driving three-bladed propeller assemblies) and vertical rudders at their rear. The two aircraft halves were joined by a common central wing mainplane and a common tail stabilizer plane. The outboard wing mainplanes were symmetrical and held well-forward of midships. The undercarriage was of a "tail-dragger" arrangement with a main leg held under each fuselage section and a single tailwheel fitted under the tail stabilizer unit. Dimensions included a length of 13.7 meters, a wingspan of 18.5 meters and a height of 4.15 meters. Performance from the twin-engine, twin-fuselage arrangement netted a maximum speed of 382 miles per hour, a range out to 1,245 miles and a service ceiling up to 39,360 feet.

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    Savoia-Marchetti SM.92 Technical Specifications

    Service Year: 1943
    Type: Heavy Fighter Prototype Aircraft
    National Origin: Kingdom of Italy
    Manufacturer(s): Savoia-Marchetti - Italy
    Production Total: 1

    Structural (Crew Space, Dimensions and Weights)

    Operating Crew: 2
    Length: 44.95 feet (13.7 meters)
    Width: 60.86 feet (18.55 meters)
    Height: 13.62 feet (4.15 meters)

    Weight (Empty): 13,007 lb (5,900 kg)
    Weight (MTOW): 19,290 lb (8,750 kg)

    Installed Power and Standard Day Performance

    Engine(s): 2 x Daimler-Benz DB 605 V12 liquid-cooled supercharged inline piston engines developing 1,290 horsepower each.

    Maximum Speed: 382 mph (615 kph; 332 knots)
    Maximum Range: 1,243 miles (2,000 km)
    Service Ceiling: 39,370 feet (12,000 meters; 7.46 miles)
    Rate-of-Climb: 860 feet-per-minute (262 m/min)

    Armament / Mission Payload

    2 x 20mm MG 151 cannons in central wing section
    1 x 20mm MG 151 cannon in starboard fuselage
    1 x 12.7mm Breda-SAFAT heavy machine gun under portside engine.
    1 x 12.7mm Breda-SAFAT heavy machine gun under starboard side engine.
    1 x 12.7mm Breda-SAFAT heavy machine gun (remotely-controlled) in tail installation.

    Up to 4,400 pounds of conventional drop stores under central wing unit and 350 pounds under each outboard wing unit.

    Global Operators / Customers

    Kingdom of Italy (cancelled)

    Model Variants (Including Prototypes)

    SM.92 - Base Series Designation