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Martin XB-27 (Model 182)

High-Altitude Medium Bomber Proposal

Martin XB-27 (Model 182)

High-Altitude Medium Bomber Proposal

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
IMAGES
Overview



The Martin XB-27, developed from the B-26 Marauder line, was drawn up as a possible high-altitude medium bomber solution.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: United States
YEAR: 1939
STATUS: Cancelled
MANUFACTURER(S): Glenn L. Martin Company - USA
PRODUCTION: 0
OPERATORS: United States (abandoned)
National flag of United States
USA
Technical Specifications



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Martin XB-27 model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: 7
POWER: 2 x Pratt & Whitney R-2800-9 air-cooled radial piston engines developing 2,000 horsepower and driving three-bladed propeller units.
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Armament



PROPOSED, STANDARD:
1 x 0.50 caliber Browning M2 Heavy Machine Gun (HMG).
3 x 0.30 caliber Browning M1919 Medium Machine Guns (MMGs).

PROPOSED, OPTIONAL:
Up to 4,000lb of conventional drop bombs in an internal bomb bay with optional underwing stores. Aerial rockets also assumed.
Graphical image of an aircraft medium machine gun
Graphical image of an aircraft heavy machine gun
Graphical image of aircraft aerial rockets
Graphical image of an aircraft conventional drop bomb munition
Variants / Models



• XB-27 - Base Project Designation.
• Model 182 - Martin company project designation.


History



Detailing the development and operational history of the Martin XB-27 (Model 182) High-Altitude Medium Bomber Proposal.  Entry last updated on 4/2/2019. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
Ground-based air defenses remained a potent threat to aircraft in the lead-up to World War 2 (1939-1945). As such, there remained a focus on acquiring high-altitude bomber types by the major military players of the period, platforms that could fly higher than ground-based defenses could reach and stay out of the grasp of pesky interceptors attempting to knock the bomber out of the sky. "Twins" - twin-engined aircraft forms - became the normal arrangement for medium-class types and the United States had no shortage of stellar twins before the war drew to a close in 1945.

By this time in history, the Glenn L. Martin Company ("Martin") was a storied, long-running established player for the United States military, supplying all manner of aircraft from the World War 1 (1914-1918) period onward. For the latter part of the 1930s, the company was deeply involved in work on a new "twin", a medium bomber of considerable capability which flew for the first time on November 25th, 1940 and was ultimately accepted into service with the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) in 1941 to become the famous B-26 "Marauder" - the medium bomber seeing action throughout World War 2 and beyond.

Two major developments sprung from the B-26 initiative: the "Model 182" (becoming the "XB-27") and "Model 190" (proposed as a "Super Marauder"). The Model 182, the focus of this article, was proposed to USAAC/USAAF authorities as a high-altitude, medium-class bomber which was slated to retain much of the form and function that made the B-26 such a success in service. The design was aerodynamically refined, as expected, with a glazed-over nosecone section, stepped cockpit, and single-finned tail unit. A modern tricycle undercarriage would aid in ground-running and related actions. Each mainplane would be mounted at shoulder-height along the fuselage sides and carry underslung nacelles, each engine driving multi-bladed propellers in "tractor" / "puller" fashion. The mainplanes were envisioned with a swept-back leading edge and straight-lined trailing edge while sporting rounded tips.

The primary crew workspaces were contained in the nose, tail, cockpit, and midsection - the crew complement numbering seven and including two pilots (seated side-by-side under a framed canopy space), a bombardier, and several dedicated machine gunners. The expected high-altitude operations of this aircraft required it to have pressurized work spaces for the crew - the aircraft called to operate at altitudes in excess of 30,000 feet.

Structural dimensions included a running length of 60.8 feet with a wingspan of 84 feet. Height was 20 feet and loaded weight would have reached around 33,000lb.




The bomber was drawn up with a war load up to 4,000lb, this to be carried mostly internally in a bomb bay section at the belly of the aircraft (also, in keeping with other similar designs of the period, externally-held munitions could / should not be ruled out). Standard armament was to include 3 x 0.30 caliber Browning M1919 air-cooled (medium) machine guns and 1 x 0.50 caliber Browning M2 air-cooled (heavy) machine gun for point self-defense. One 0.30 caliber weapon was to be focused at the nose with another in a rear-facing dorsal position and the final gun found at a rear-facing ventral position. The remaining 0.50 caliber was to be installed at the extreme end of the fuselage to help cover the most vulnerable area of the bomber.

Power for the twin-engined bomber centered on 2 x Pratt & Whitney R-2800-9 "Double Wasp" air-cooled, turbo-supercharged radial piston engines, each delivering 2,000 horsepower and driving four-bladed propeller units. These engines, first run in 1937, became the centerpiece of many-a-classic design of the World War 2 period: the Grumman F6F "Hellcat" naval fighter, the Republic P-47 "Thunderbolt" USAAF fighter, and the Vought F4U "Corsair" naval fighter to name a few.

Estimated performance specs included a maximum speed between 280 and 375 miles-per-hour (sources vary), an operational range out to 2,900 miles, and a service ceiling up to 33,500 feet.

The bomber was being developed around a USAAC specification (Specification XC-214) originating in August of 1939 - just weeks before World War 2 arrived in Europe (September 1st with the German invasion of Poland). Martin was in direct competition with North American (makers of the famous B-25 "Mitchell" medium twin-engined medium bomber) for the requirement but, in any event, neither design proved an outright success. The North American NA-63 was actually ordered and flown as a prototype through the "XB-28" (detailed elsewhere on this site) but the Martin Model 182 was only advanced on paper as the "XB-27" - becoming nothing more than a relatively advanced design study.

The requirement was eventually fulfilled by a collection of other in-service aircraft that could more than meet the demand of different mission types. The changing requirements of war, namely air superiority for the Allies in the march to Rome, Berlin and Tokyo, also played a role in the demise of such aircraft projects.




Media







Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

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Relative Maximum Speed
Hi: 300mph
Lo: 150mph
This entry's maximum listed speed (280mph).

Graph average of 225 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
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Graph showcases the Martin XB-27's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
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Pie graph section
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production (0)
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
0
0

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


Altitude Visualization
Small airplane graphic
Supported Roles
A2A
Interception
UAV
Ground Attack
CAS
Training
ASW
Anti-Ship
AEW
MEDEVAC
EW
Maritime/Navy
SAR
Aerial Tanker
Utility/Transport
VIP
Passenger
Business
Recon
SPECOPS
X-Plane/Development
A2A=Air-to-Air; UAV=Unmanned; CAS=Close Support; ASW=Anti-Submarine; AEW=Airborne Early Warning; MEDEVAC=Medical Evac; EW=Electronic Warfare; SAR=Search-Rescue
Commitments / Honors
Military lapel ribbon for Operation Allied Force
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Britain
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Midway
Military lapel ribbon for the Berlin Airlift
Military lapel ribbon for the Chaco War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cuban Missile Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for pioneering aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the French-Indochina War
Military lapel ribbon for the Golden Age of Flight
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Iran-Iraq War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1982 Lebanon War
Military lapel ribbon for the Malayan Emergency
Military lapel ribbon representing modern aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Six Day War
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Suez Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for Warsaw Pact of the Cold War-era
Military lapel ribbon for the WASP (WW2)
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur War
Military lapel ribbon for experimental x-plane aircraft
* Ribbons not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns/operations.


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