Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II

Role Close air support, and ground-attack aircraft
Crew 1
Passengers 1
First flight
Entered service
Manufacturer Fairchild Aircraft
Produced 716
Length 53 ft 4 in 16.26 m
Wingspan 57 ft 6 in 17.42 m
Height 14 ft 8 in 4.42 m
Wing area 505 sq ft 47.01 m²
Empty 24,959 lb 9,761 kg
Loaded 14,846 kg
Maximum takeoff 50,000 lb 22,680 kg
Engine 2 × General Electric TF34-GE-100A turbofans
Power (each) 9,065 lb st 40.32 kN
Maximum speed 420 mph (Mach 0.56)(Sea Level 439 mph) (Sea Level) 706 km/h
Cruising speed 560 km/h
Range 4091 km
Rate of climb 6,000 ft per min 1,829 m per min


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An A-10 landing

The A-10 Thunderbolt II is the result of the Attack Experimental (A-X) program, which was formed in 1966 to develop a new close air support attack aircraft to succeed the A-1 Skyraider. 21 companies were prompted to make first concepts for such an aircraft in 1967. Three years later, designs were submitted by Boeing, Cessna, Fairchild, General Dynamics, Lockheed and Northrop. Fairchild-Republic's and Northrop's designs were declared as the winners on 18 December 1970.

Both companies manufactured one prototype, the YA-9 by Northrop and the YA-10 by Fairchild-Republic. The competition was won by the YA-10.

The first A-10 aircraft were delivered in October 1975 to the Davis–Monthan Air Force Base in Arizona. A total of 715 A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft have been produced.



A-10 GAU-8

The A-10's 30 mm GAU-8 Avenger cannon.

The A-10 Thunderbolt II is literally built around its 30-mm General Electric GAU-8 Avenger seven barrel cannon, the most powerful gun ever fitted to an aircraft of this class, designed to be used for tank burst. The A-10 features eleven under-wing/under-fuselage hard-points and can carry 16,000lb of ordnance -- including AGM-65 Maverick anti-armor missiles, cluster bombs, LGBs, and AIM-9 AAMs.

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The A-10 Thunderbolt II received its popular nickname "Warthog" (sometimes simply hog) from the pilots and crews of the USAF attack squadrons who flew and maintained it.

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