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Yokosuka R2Y (Keiun)


Reconnaissance / Heavy Fighter Prototype


Imperial Japan | 1945



"Just one flyable prototype - eventually destroyed by American bombs - was witnessed for the Yokosuka R2Y fighter project."



Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 08/24/2020 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
Heading into 1945, the Imperial Japanese military services were hard-pressed to find viable fighters and turn the tide of the war in the Pacific. Many aircraft projects were undertaken but very few were actually realized, mainly due to the quickly deteriorating situation in Japan proper (caused largely by the American bombing effort on major Japanese infrastructure and weapons-producing facilities). Just prior to the end of the war - which came in August of 1945 for the Japanese Empire - the concern of Yokosuka undertook work on a new fighter platform with reconnaissance capabilities. This product turned out to be the short-lived R2Y "Keiun" ("Cirrus Cloud") which existed only in prototype form before its own end came. A first flight was recorded on May 8th, 1945.

The R2Y was intended for service with the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) and followed the unsuccessful, underperforming, R1Y development. The newer design seated a crew of two and carried a pair of coupled engines (2 x Aichi Atsuta of 1,700hp, collectively designated the Aichi Ha-70) driven by a single gearbox. Output power was 3,400 horsepower and a six-bladed propeller unit was fitted at the nose. The cockpit was set well-forward along the tubular fuselage which shifted the engine installations to midships and aft. A retractable tricycle undercarriage gave the R2Y a very modern appearance. The tail unit incorporated a single fin with traditional horizontal planes. Dimensions included a length of 42.9 feet, a wingspan of 45.10 feet and a height of 13.8 feet - the R2Y was a large aircraft for its intended operating class. Empty weight was 13,260lb and Maximum Take-Off Weight (MTOW) reached 20,725lb.

Performance-wise, the design could manage a maximum speed of 480 miles per hour, a range out to 2,250 miles and a service ceiling up to 38,375 feet. Rate-of-climb reached 3,610 feet-per-minute.

The aircraft's armament suite appears to not have been finalized but it most likely would have revolved around automatic cannons fitted to the nose section.

The prototype was made available as soon as April (1945) and this example was the one taken into the air in May. The flight was of short duration and the vehicle was parked when it was caught under the bombs of an American air raid - proving a total loss for the project. This effectively killed any future the R2Y program had. A short-lived jet-powered offshoot, the R2Y2 "Keiun-Kai", was also considered but the proposal was not furthered beyond an incomplete prototype by war's end.

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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 Yokosuka R2Y Reconnaissance / Heavy Fighter Prototype.
1 x Aichi Ha-70 inline piston engine (2 x Aichi Atsuta of 1,700 horsepower each) developing 3,400 horsepower driving a six-bladed propeller unit at the nose.
Propulsion
478 mph
770 kph | 416 kts
Max Speed
41,667 ft
12,700 m | 8 miles
Service Ceiling
2,243 miles
3,610 km | 1,949 nm
Operational Range
3,610 ft/min
1,100 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 Yokosuka R2Y Reconnaissance / Heavy Fighter Prototype.
2
(MANNED)
Crew
42.8 ft
13.05 m
O/A Length
45.9 ft
(14.00 m)
O/A Width
13.9 ft
(4.25 m)
O/A Height
13,261 lb
(6,015 kg)
Empty Weight
20,723 lb
(9,400 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 Yokosuka R2Y (Keiun) Reconnaissance / Heavy Fighter Prototype .
ASSUMED:
2 OR 4 x Automatic cannons fitted to the nose or wing assemblies.
Variants
Notable series variants as part of the Yokosuka R2Y (Keiun) family line.
R2Y - Base Series Designation; single prototype destroyed in Allied air raid.
R2Y2 - Proposed twin turbojet-powered form; incomplete prototype.
Operators
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Yokosuka R2Y (Keiun). Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 1 Units

Contractor(s): Yokosuka - Imperial Japan
National flag of modern Japan

[ Imperial Japan ]
Relative Max Speed
Hi: 500mph
Lo: 250mph
Aircraft Max Listed Speed (478mph).

Graph Average of 375 MPH.
Era Crossover
Pie graph section
Showcasing Aircraft Era Crossover (if any)
Max Alt Visualization
Small airplane graphic
Production Comparison
1
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
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Image of the Yokosuka R2Y (Keiun)
Image from the Public Domain.

Mission Roles
Some designs are single-minded in their approach while others offer a more versatile solution to airborne requirements.
AIR-TO-AIR COMBAT
RECONNAISSANCE
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 Yokosuka R2Y (Keiun) Reconnaissance / Heavy Fighter Prototype appears in the following collections:
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