MCDONNELL DOUGLAS

F-101B VOODOO

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Developed from the XF-88 penetration fighter, the F-101 originally was designed as a long-range bomber escort for the Strategic Air Command.

However, when high-speed, high-altitude jet bombers such as the B-52 entered active service, escort fighters were not needed. Therefore, before production began, the F-101′s design was changed to fill both tactical and air defense roles.

The F-101 made its first flight on Sep. 29, 1954. The first production F-101A became operational in May 1957, followed by the F-101C in Sep. 1957 and the F-101B in Jan. 1959.

By the time F-101 production ended in March 1961, McDonnell had built 785 Voodoos including 480 F-101Bs, the two-seat, all-weather interceptor used by the Air Defense Command.

The F-101 could climb four miles straight up in one minute.

In the reconnaissance versions, the Voodoo was the world’s first supersonic photo-recon aircraft. These RF-101s were used widely for low-altitude photo coverage of missile sites during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis and during the late 1960s in Southeast Asia.

The F-101B’s, used as fighter interceptors by Air Defense Command, all were two-seaters. The F-101 set the world speed record in 1958 of 1208mph. The F-101C was the world’s first super sonic reconnaissance plane. Flight controls in the F-101 were only in the front cockpit.

SPECIFICATIONS
Span: 39 ft. 8 in.
Length: 71 ft. 1 in.
Height: 18 ft. 0 in.
Weight: 52,400 lbs. max.
Armament: Two AIR-2A rockets plus two AIM-4 guided missiles
Engines: Two Pratt & Whitney J57-P-55s of 16,900 lbs. thrust ea. (with afterburner)
Crew: Two
Cost: $ 1,819,000
Tail Number: 58-0321
Years in Service: 1957-1978
PERFORMANCE
Maximum Speed: 1,095 mph
Cruising Speed: 545 mph
Range: 1,754 miles
Service Ceiling: 52,100 feet