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FMA IAe 30 Namcu (Eagle)

Twin-Engine Escort / Heavy Fighter Aircraft

Argentina | 1948

"The promising FMA IAe 30 Namcu of Argentina was doomed by the rise of the jet age following World War 2."

Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the FMA IAe 30 Namcu (Eagle) Twin-Engine Escort / Heavy Fighter Aircraft.
2 x Rolls-Royce Merlin 604 V12 liquid-cooled inline piston engines developing 1,800 horsepower each.
460 mph
740 kph | 400 kts
Max Speed
26,247 ft
8,000 m | 5 miles
Service Ceiling
1,678 miles
2,700 km | 1,458 nm
Operational Range
3,280 ft/min
1,000 m/min
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the FMA IAe 30 Namcu (Eagle) Twin-Engine Escort / Heavy Fighter Aircraft.
37.8 ft
11.52 m
O/A Length
49.2 ft
(15.00 m)
O/A Width
16.9 ft
(5.15 m)
O/A Height
13,691 lb
(6,210 kg)
Empty Weight
16,755 lb
(7,600 kg)
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the FMA IAe 30 Namcu (Eagle) Twin-Engine Escort / Heavy Fighter Aircraft .
6 x 20mm Hispano-Suiza HS.804 autocannons

1 x 550lb bomb under the fuselage
10 x Rockets underwing (five to a wing)
Notable series variants as part of the FMA IAe 30 Namcu (Eagle) family line.
IAe 30 "Namcu" - Base Series Designation; one flyable prototype completed along with two under-construction units - all ultimately scrapped.
Authored By: Dan Alex | Last Edited: 07/22/2018 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

In 1947, the Argentine Air Force broadened its strategic reach by purchasing a fleet of 30 Avro Lincoln heavy bombers (some former RAF models) along with 15 Avro Lancasters. With this considerable air arm by South American standards, it was decided to pair the group with a new escort / heavy fighter of local design and production. Italian aeronautical engineer Cesare Pallavicino, having arrived in Argentina during 1946 in the post-World War 2 drawdown, was hired to head the new initiative and this work ultimately revealed the IAe 30 "Nancu" - a short-lived, yet very promising, single-seat, twin-engined platform which eventually saw only one example completed.

The new heavy fighter was designed in the same vein as the British de Havilland "Hornet" series in which a centralized fuselage was straddled by engines fitted to the wing leading edges (also reminiscent of the classic de Havilland "Mosquito" series of World War 2 fame). The engine of choice became 2 x Rolls-Royce "Merlin" 604 series V-12 liquid-cooled inline piston types each outputting at 1,800 horsepower. The overall appearance of the aircraft was well-streamlined from nose to tail with the pilot seated just aft of a short nose cone assembly. The tail unit utilized a single vertical fin with mid-mounted horizontal planes. The wing mainplanes were fitted well-ahead of midships and were straight in their general shape with rounded tips - each holding an engine installation driving four-bladed propeller units. Dimensions included a length of 38 feet, a wingspan of 49.2 feet and a height of 17 feet. Empty weight was 13,685 pounds against a gross weight of 16,755 pounds. Armament settled on 6 x 20mm Hispano-Suiza HS.804 autocannons (originally Oerlikon types were considered) with support for a single 550 lb conventional drop bomb held under the belly. Each wing was also to gain provision for launch rails for up to five rockets apiece.

The clean shape, coupled with the strong-performing powerplants, resulted in a maximum speed of 460 miles per hour, cruising speeds of 310 miles per hour and ranges out to 1,680 miles. It service ceiling was listed at 26,250 feet. Mission endurance was up to 5.5 hours.

In late 1947, the Argentine government commissioned for three prototypes as the "IAe 30". The first example came online in June of 1948 and a first flight was recorded a month later on July 17th. Subsequent testing revealed a very capable, high-performance piston-powered aircraft with good handling characteristics. The prototype set a South American level speed record of 403.89 (650 kmh) miles per hour during a test flight from Cordoba to the capital city of Buenos Aires - a record still standing today (2015). This feat was achieved with the engines running at just 60% of power - showcasing the potential of this new fighter.

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The aircraft was also eventually being broadened along two other lines - one as a jet-powered version (powered by 2 x Rolls-Royce Derwent turbojets of 3,500 lb thrust each) similar to the Gloster Meteor jet fighter already in service with the Argentine Air Force and the other as a two-man light bomber / heavy attack aircraft similar in scope to the classic de Havilland Mosquito (neither of these designs were furthered beyond what was already the established IAe 30 form).

Despite the mounting confidence in the IAe 30 Nancu product, there came a decided shift in the Argentine direction with the advent of the jet age and mounting financial constraints heading into the 1950s. As more and more world powers turned to turbojet developments, Argentina was forced to follow suit and invested in the IAe 27 "Pulqui" prototype which became Latin America's first turbojet-powered offering. While failing in its intended goal, this line was bettered in the ultimately-abandoned "Pulqui II" venture which was based on the wartime German Focke-Wulf Ta 183 "Huckebein" jet fighter (detailed elsewhere on this site).

This left the IAe 30 out in the lurch with no real investors and thus the IAe 30 project was retired in 1948. The aircraft did continue to fly for a short while longer until, in 1949, it suffered damaged during a hard landing. Formal cancellation came in April of 1949 and the three prototypes were scrapped. Despite its good performance (by World War 2 standards), the IAe 30 (and the entire Argentina bomber fleet) would most certainly have been made quickly obsolete by jet-powered developments.

The IAe 30 received its "Namcu" name from an eagle species native to the region of Patagonia making up the southern end of the country of Argentina.

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Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the FMA IAe 30 Namcu (Eagle). Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 3 Units

Contractor(s): Fabrica Militar de Aviones (FMA) - Argentina
National flag of Argentina

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Image of the FMA IAe 30 Namcu (Eagle)
Image from the Public Domain.

Going Further...
The FMA IAe 30 Namcu (Eagle) Twin-Engine Escort / Heavy Fighter Aircraft appears in the following collections:
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