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Lockheed L-169

Carrierborne Long-Range Fighter Proposal

United States | 1948

"The promising, yet unsuccessful, Lockheed L-169 was proposed to the United States Navy in the post-World War 2 years as a carrierborne long-range fighter."

Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Lockheed L-169 Carrierborne Long-Range Fighter Proposal.
ORIGINAL: 2 x Westinghouse 24C turbojet engines of unknown thrust output.
739 mph
1,190 kph | 643 kts
Max Speed
44,997 ft
13,715 m | 9 miles
Service Ceiling
969 miles
1,560 km | 842 nm
Operational Range
11,900 ft/min
3,627 m/min
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Lockheed L-169 Carrierborne Long-Range Fighter Proposal.
44.5 ft
13.55 m
O/A Length
34.9 ft
(10.65 m)
O/A Width
16,998 lb
(7,710 kg)
Empty Weight
21,738 lb
(9,860 kg)
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the Lockheed L-169 Carrierborne Long-Range Fighter Proposal .
6 x 20mm automatic cannons fitted under the nose or in the wing leading edges.
Notable series variants as part of the Lockheed L-169 family line.
L-169 - Base Project Designation.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 05/21/2022 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

Lockheed engineers drew up plans for their "L-169" project aircraft in 1946-1947 to satisfy a United States Navy (USN) interest for a high-performance, long-range fighter utilizing a delta-wing planform. The resulting design was to feature a single-seat cockpit set over the nose in the usual way with swept-back, large-area blended wing-body planform powered by a pair of turbojet engines buried within the center of the fuselage - this in a traditional side-by-side arrangement. Like other project aircraft of the time, the L-169 was not advanced beyond its paper stage.

The design direction of the blended wing-body delta-wing meant that internal storage volume was considerably increased over that of contemporary fighters while also allowing the outward appearance of the fighter / interceptor to remain very clean, enhancing inherent control / stability due mainly to greater surface area at play. Internally, a pair of Westinghouse 24C series turbojets would be fitted until Lockheed's own L-1000 series jets came online - promising greater performance than the original Westinghouse installations. Coupled with its aerodynamically-refined shape, the L-169 was to have been an agile, high-performance aircraft suitable for the long-range fighter role.

The overall arrangement revealed a sleek offering from Lockheed with many conventional parts making up the sum. This included a retractable tricycle undercarriage for ground-running, an arrestor hook located under the tail for carrier-based landings, and a cruciform tail unit with mid-mounted tailplanes along a single vertical fin structure. The pilot had a commanding view out over and to the sides of the nose thanks to a three-piece canopy and elevated position though views to the rear remained mostly obstructed due to the large surface area of the planform.

The estimated combat range of the fighter was an impressive 1,000 miles to 1,450 miles depending on engine fit and operating altitude. Beyond this, maximum speed would have reached 740 miles-per-hour with a service ceiling beyond 35,000 feet. Rate-of-climb was 11,900 feet-per-minute. Structurally, the airframe has a running length of 44.5 feet and a wing span of 35 feet. Base weight was rated at 17,000lb with an MTOW reaching 21,730lb.

As a fighter / interceptor type, the L-169 was to feature a formidable battery of 6 x 20mm automatic cannons, either placed under the nose (three per fuselage side) or in the wings. In either case, this provided the fighter with an exceptional solution against enemy aircraft and ships prior to the age of the missile. Beyond this, no other armament was mentioned in the proposal.

The general shape of the L-169 was successfully tested as a subscale wind tunnel model with promising results. Even Lockheed championed the idea that a flyable prototype could be made available as soon as 1948 to help win over the Navy. Despite this and an official design review, the project was not evolved by the Navy's BuAer department and fell to the pages of history.

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Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Lockheed L-169. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 0 Units

Contractor(s): Lockheed Corporation - USA
National flag of the United States

[ United States (cancelled) ]
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Going Further...
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