The Northrop F-89 Scorpion was a twin engine all-weather interceptor aircraft by the American company Northrop.
History[edit | edit source]
The F-89 was designed to be a jet-powered replacement for the P-61 Black Widow and was developed according to a requirement of the ATSC (Air Technical Service Command) in March 1945. After the development-contract was finished in May 1946, the US Air Force ordered two prototypes of the aircraft. The first flight of a XF-89 prototype was on 16th August 1948. The prototype showed very great performance and after a fly-off with a Curtiss XF-87 in October 1948, the US Air Force contracted over 48 F-89A in January 1949. The first F-89A was flown on 25th November 1950, the first aircraft were delivered in the year 1951.
On 19th July 1957 a F-89J Scorpion launched the first and the only time a nuclear Air-to-Air missile at the Nevada National Security Site. The missile was an AIR-2 Genie, that was fired at a ceiling of 4,600 m, which exploded after a short time.
From 1957 to 1969 the F-89 was replaced by the Convair F-102. Some aircraft were modified into target drones but most of them were moved to the squadrons of the Air National Guard.