This is coolbert:
For a period of about a decade and a half beginning in the aftermath of the Second World War [WW2], the U.S. Navy sought in a mighty and controversial way to achieve a strategic nuclear attack potentiality
. Part of the nuclear deterrent, aircraft carriers able to carry heavy and large long-range warplanes with a strategic mission [SIOP].
A potentiality lasting for over ten years and only ending with the advent of the submarine launched ballistic missile [SLBM] of the Polaris/Poseidon/Trident variety.
The carrier borne strategic bomber aircraft is an idea that at the time was worthy of merit?
The intercontinental manned bomber aircraft defined previously as:
"A bomber capable of traveling from one major land mass to another to deliver a load of bombs on target."
Rather than the warplane [manned intercontinental bomber] traveling "from one major land mass to another" have the AIRFIELD
[aircraft carrier] travel "from one major land mass to another"?
easier to do and not having to rely upon foreign bases and "entangling alliances" with governments of nations that are of dubious reliance. Strategic clout and global nuclear deterrent reach with nuclear-armed carrier borne LAUNCHED AND RECOVERED
[my emphasis!] aircraft! The storage of atomic bombs on foreign soil also a tricky item - - NOT
even a question with the strategic navy concept!
Combat naval aviation with the strategic mission in mind, nuclear capable, aircraft to include:
1. AJ Savage
A most interesting concept and design. Able to be "LAUNCHED AND RECOVERED" [again my emphasis] from an aircraft carrier, nuclear capable, a push-pull design [?] with two conventional propeller driven engines up-front AND
a turbo-jet in the rear providing power, a hybrid airplane.
"two Pratt & Whitney R-2800 piston engines, with a large turbocharger fitted inside each engine nacelle . . . [and] An Allison J33 turbojet was fitted in the rear fuselage."
"The Heavy Attack versions were the first nuclear bomb carrying bombers able to be launched from and recovered on aircraft carriers".
"The AJ Savage was a large composite-powered carrier-borne Attack Bomber designed to deliver nuclear ordnance"
With regard to the range and capability of the AJ Savage, the combat radius of that plane somewhat in doubt in contrast to the specification sheets? From an authority with some repute we have this comment:
"I note the plane had a 12,000lb bomb carrying capability, which was necessary in those days when many of the nukes weighed in excess of 10,000lbs. But I assume if one carried the nuke bomb, the fuel load would be significantly reduced--and so would range. The carriers launching them would usually be stationed about 200 miles offshore for self protection. That means the Navy's "strategic" bomber likely would be limited to ranges of less than 200 miles inside enemy territory--meaning in turn that 90% of the Soviet Union would be out of range
. That's my guess, anyway."
Special emphasis here with regard to the take-off of the AJ Savage. As is intuitively obvious, maximum take-off weight during a SIOP [single integrated operational plan] mission to include a nuclear weapon and fuel. The greater the weight of the bomb that much less fuel the warplane is able to carry, the round-trip range reduced by that much!
2. A-3 Skywarrior
The Skywarrior. Two engine JET
bomber aircraft, carrier-borne, capable of take-off and landing, nuclear capable with SIOP mission on-call.
"The Douglas A-3 Skywarrior was originally designed as a strategic bomber
for the United States Navy"
The U.S. Air Force carried this plane it their inventory too and referred to it as the B-66.
3. A-5 Vigilante
The Vigilante. Nuclear capable jet warplane that was able to achieve SUPERSONIC SPEED
"The North American A-5 Vigilante was a carrier-based supersonic bomber
designed for the United States Navy."
"In 1953, North American Aviation began a private study for a carrier-based, long-range, all-weather strike bomber, capable of delivering nuclear weapons at supersonic speeds
At this point the obvious progression is clear. The prop driven long-range bomber giving way to the jet version followed by the supersonic model!
4. P6M SeaMaster
The SeaMaster. A jet flying boat with long-range capability. That flying boat able take off and land from any large size body of water. An oceanic "airbase" almost anywhere on the planet. And serviced, fueled, armed and tended to by "seaplane tenders or even special submarines". That total lack of reliance on ordinary and common "logistical support" as "envisioned" by military planners A BIG PLUS
"The Martin P6M SeaMaster . . . was a 1950s strategic bomber flying boat for the United States Navy . . . Envisioned as a way to give the Navy a strategic nuclear force,"
"a 'Seaplane Striking Force' useful for both nuclear and conventional warfare . . . Groups of these planes, supported by seaplane tenders or even special submarines, could be located closer to the enemy
, and as mobile targets would be harder to neutralize
Again, the advent and sailing of submarines carrying ballistic missiles, the SLBM becoming the U.S. Navy nuclear deterrent, the role of the strategic carrier-borne bomber becoming obsolescent, NOT
needed, null and void, removed from the inventory. An idea worthy of merit for a time, but not for some time and maybe never again?