USN NASWF Douglas F3D Skyknight
First Albuquerque Visit: 1952
The Douglas F3D “Skyknight” was an American twin-engine mid-wing jet fighter aircraft designed and manufactured by the Douglas Aircraft Company. It was designed in response to a requirement issued by the United States Navy in 1945 for a jet-powered, radar-equipped, carrier-based night fighter aircraft. The F3D’s primary mission was to locate and destroy enemy aircraft at night. The Skyknight was not produced in great numbers, yet it achieved numerous firsts in its role as a night fighter during the Korean War where the aircraft frequently escorted Boeing B-29’s on night bombing missions.
The US Navy F3D was assigned to the Naval Air Special Weapons Facility (NASWF), later the Naval Weapons Evaluation Facility (NWEF), at Kirtland Air Force Base in 1952 in order to receive extensive testing along with flying as a camera aircraft to record other aircraft involved with supporting the NASWEF national labs research programs.
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