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The A-10 is the first USAF aircraft designed specifically for close air support of ground forces. It is named for the famous P-47 Thunderbolt, a fighter often used in a close air tư vấn role during the latter part of WW II.

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The A-10 is designed for maneuverability at low speeds và low altitudes for accurate weapons delivery, & carries systems và armor lớn permit it to survive in this environment. It is intended for use against all ground targets, most specifically tanks và other armored vehicles.

The Thunderbolt II’s great endurance gives it a large combat radius and/or long loiter time in a battle area. Its short takeoff và landing capability permits operation from airstrips close to the front lines. Service at forward area bases with limited facilities is possible because of the A-10’s simplicity of design.

The first prototype Thunderbolt II made its initial flight on May 10, 1972. A-10A production commenced in 1975. Delivery of aircraft lớn USAF units began in 1976 & ended in 1984.

Designed for close air support for ground troops, the A-10 was about lớn be retired. However, it proved itself so well in the Gulf War that it has been retained.

Capable of firing 6000 rounds per minute, the 30mm gun holds about 1000 rounds and the total fire time is about trăng tròn seconds. The A-10 has 11 pylons khổng lồ hold ordnance & can carry more than its own weight in bombs & rockets.

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A titanium tub around the pilot can take a hit from a 20mm bullet. The engines are also armor-covered & have dual hydraulic systems.

Fire/explosion proof fuel systems make for a very safe plane. The ejection seat can be used, if necessary, from the ground with no forward speed.

SPECIFICATIONS
Span:57 ft. 6 in.
Length:53 ft. 4 in.
Height:17 ft. 8 in.
Weight:47,000 lbs.
Armament:One GAU-8/A 30mm Gatling Gun & 16,000 lbs. Of mixed ordnance
Engines:Two General Electric TF34-GE-100 turbofans of 9,000 lbs. Thrust each
Crew:One
Cost:$ 2,400,000
Tail Number:77-0228
Nickname:Warthog
Years in Service:1981 – Present
PERFORMANCE
Maximum Speed:450 mph
Cruising Speed:335 mph
Range:2900 miles
Service Ceiling:44,200 feet

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