Curtiss-Wright XP-55 Ascender

XP-55 Ascender picture #1 XP-55 Ascender picture #2
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Developed to meet a 1939 USAAC specification for an interceptor fighter, the XP-55 was an unconventional design. It was a swept wing canard pusher aircraft that lacked a tail. Only three prototypes were produced, with the first taking flight in July 1943. Testing continued through 1944, but due to inherent stability problems and poor low-speed handling characteristics the type was abandoned.

For more data and history on this aircraft, click here for Joe Baugher's webpage.
USAF archives on this aircraft, click here.
To acquire a model of this aircraft: Collect-Aire Models
Additional information on this aircraft can be found at Wikipedia here.
(updated February 2009)

Curtiss-Wright XP-55 Ascender

Type:           single seat interceptor fighter
Crew:           1: Pilot
Armament:       four .50 cal machine guns in the nose

        Length:         29' 7" (9.02 m)
        Height:         10' 0.75" (3.07 m)
        Wingspan:       44' 0.5" (13.42 m)
        Wing area:      235 sq. ft (21.83 sq. m)
        Empty Weight:   6354 lb (2882 kg)
        Max Weight:     7929 lb (3597 kg) max at takeoff

        No. of Engines: 1
        Powerplant:     Allison V-1710-95 inline
        Horsepower:     1275 hp

        Range:          635 miles (1022 km)
        Cruise Speed:   296 mph ( 476 km/h)
        Max Speed:      390 mph ( 628 km/h) at 19300 ft
        Ceiling:        34600 ft (10545 m)

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