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Tachikawa Ki-94


Fighter Prototype


Imperial Japan | 1945



"The Tachikawa Ki-94 emerged through two very different fighter forms in the latter part of World War 2 - only one was furthered into prototype form."



Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 02/08/2018 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
Many aircraft in development by Japan at the time of the surrender of 1945 were ended in whatever state they resided (if they had not already been destroyed, either by the Japanese themselves or by the relentless Allied air campaign). Tachikawa undertook two late-war programs intended as bomber interceptors for the Army under the "Ki-94" designation. As the American Boeing B-29 "Superfortress" high-altitude heavy bomber became the primary concern for the Japanese homeland, a high-altitude fighter capable of intercepting these machines was in order.

The initial Ki-94 offering, later bestowed the designation of "Ki-94-I" was a unique twin-boom, single-engine/twin-propeller fighter design with a centralized fuselage nacelle housing the cockpit, armament and engine. The wing mainplanes were low-mounted with the booms emanating from their trailing edges. The single-seat cockpit was fitted at the center of the fuselage nacelle with the engine in the nose. The aircraft would be powered by one engine installation - a Nakajima Ha-211 18-cylinder air-cooled radial piston type - while driving a twin-propeller arrangement: there was a four-bladed propeller unit at the nose and a second unit at the extreme end of the fuselage nacelle driven via an extension shaft (termed a "push-pull" configuration). Proposed armament was 2 x 37mm cannons along with 2 x 30mm cannons - a formidable frontal "punch" against any Allied bomber of the war.

This design proved too complex for the Army and was passed on by authorities.

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The follow-up Ki-94-II took on a more conventional design arrangement. A low-wing monoplane planform was used which sat the wings ahead of midships and the cockpit over it. The tail unit utilized a single vertical plane along with two low-set horizontal planes. The engine was held in the nose and a tail-dragger undercarriage featured. A pressurized cockpit was to be used to satisfy the high-altitude requirement. Power came from a Nakajima Ha-219 (Ha-44-12) 18-cylinder of 2,461 horsepower output driving a six-bladed propeller unit. Armament centered on 2 x 30mm Ho-155 series cannons paired with 2 x 20mm Ho-5 cannons - all fitted to the wing elements. There would be provision for carrying 2 x 550 lb drop bombs for the attack role if needed.

It was this second offering that was championed by the Army and further development would be had through three prototypes and one static test airframe. Additionally there would be some eighteen pre-production aircraft for useful operational experience. The first prototype appeared fitted with a Nakajima Ha-219 engine of 2,541 horsepower though only a four-bladed propeller was available to pair with it. The prototype did not see a first flight due to the end of the war in August 1945. A second prototype was still under construction at about this time and not completed. All work was scrapped in the period following the close of the war.

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Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Tachikawa Ki-94 Fighter Prototype.
1 x Nakajima Ha-219 (Ha-44/12) 18-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine developing 2,460 horsepower.
Propulsion
442 mph
712 kph | 384 kts
Max Speed
48,163 ft
14,680 m | 9 miles
Service Ceiling
1,305 miles
2,100 km | 1,134 nm
Operational Range
1,880 ft/min
573 m/min
Rate-of-Climb
City-to-City Ranges
Operational range when compared to distances between major cities (in KM).
NYC
 
  LON
LON
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MOS
MOS
 
  TOK
TOK
 
  SYD
SYD
 
  LAX
LAX
 
  NYC
Structure
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Tachikawa Ki-94 Fighter Prototype.
1
(MANNED)
Crew
39.4 ft
12.00 m
O/A Length
45.9 ft
(14.00 m)
O/A Width
15.3 ft
(4.65 m)
O/A Height
10,229 lb
(4,640 kg)
Empty Weight
14,220 lb
(6,450 kg)
MTOW
Design Balance
The three qualities reflected below are altitude, speed, and range. The more full the box, the more balanced the design.
RANGE
ALT
SPEED
Armament
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the Tachikawa Ki-94 Fighter Prototype .
STANDARD (Ki-94-I, proposed):
2 x 37mm cannons
2 x 30mm cannons

STANDARD (Ki-94-II):
2 x 30mm Ho-155 cannons in wings
2 x 20mm Ho-5 cannons in wings

OPTIONAL (Ki-94-II):
2 x 550 lb bombs
Variants
Notable series variants as part of the Tachikawa Ki-94 family line.
Ki-94 - Base Series Designation
Ki-94-I - Twin-boom, push-pull configuration; Nakajima Ha-211 engine; armed with 2 x 37mm cannons and 2 x 30mm cannons; mock-up form only.
Ki-94-II - Conventional fighter design; Nakajima Ha-219 engine of 2,461 horsepower driving six-bladed propeller; 2 x 30mm and 2 x 20mm cannons in wings with 2 x 550lb bomb provision.
Operators
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Tachikawa Ki-94. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 2 Units

Contractor(s): Tachikawa Aircraft Company Ltd - Imperial Japan
National flag of modern Japan

[ Imperial Japan (cancelled) ]
Relative Max Speed
Hi: 500mph
Lo: 250mph
Aircraft Max Listed Speed (442mph).

Graph Average of 375 MPH.
Era Crossover
Pie graph section
Showcasing Aircraft Era Crossover (if any)
Max Alt Visualization
Small airplane graphic
Production Comparison
2
36183
44000
Entry compared against Ilyushin IL-2 (military) and Cessna 172 (civilian) total production.
MACH Regime (Sonic)
Sub
Trans
Super
Hyper
HiHyper
ReEntry
RANGES (MPH) Subsonic: <614mph | Transonic: 614-921 | Supersonic: 921-3836 | Hypersonic: 3836-7673 | Hi-Hypersonic: 7673-19180 | Reentry: >19030
Aviation Timeline
EarlyYrs
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Interwar
WWII
ColdWar
Postwar
Modern
Future
1 / 2
Image of the Tachikawa Ki-94
Image from the Public Domain; Ki-94-II pictured.
2 / 2
Image of the Tachikawa Ki-94
Image from the Public Domain; Ki-94-I pictured.

Mission Roles
Some designs are single-minded in their approach while others offer a more versatile solution to airborne requirements.
AIR-TO-AIR COMBAT
X-PLANE
Recognition
Some designs stand the test of time while others are doomed to never advance beyond the drawing board; let history be their judge.
Going Further...
The Tachikawa Ki-94 Fighter Prototype appears in the following collections:
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