Bath, England, United Kingdom: Parragon Publishing, 2004. Presumed First printing this edition. Hardcover. THe format is approximately 8.75 inches by 11 inches. 384 pages. Decorative binding. No dust jacket present. Illustrations (Many in color). Index. This is a large and heavy book that if sent outside of the United States would require additional shipping charges. Over 650 Entries from 1914 to the date of publication. Robert Jackson (b. 1941) is a prolific author of military and aviation history, having become a full time writer in 1969. As an active serviceman in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve he flew a wide range of aircraft, ranging from jets to gliders. Contains over 700 photographs and full-color artworks. Featured aircraft include: Avro Lancaster Boeing B-52 Curtiss P-40 Kittyhawk De Havilland Mosquito Douglas SBD Dauntless English Electric Lightning Focke-Wulf FW 190 Gloster Meteor Junkers JU-87 Stuka Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor McDonnell Douglas F-18 Hornet MiG-29 Fulcrum North American P-51 Mustang Republic F-84 Thunderjet Supermarine Spitfire. Every entry gives the design and development history and brief service record of the type, alongside a full specification table. Over 600 of the aircraft features are illustrated with color or black and white photographs, and a number are also illustrated with full-color artworks. A military aircraft is any fixed-wing or rotary-wing aircraft that is operated by a legal or insurrectionary military of any type. Military aircraft can be either combat or non-combat: Combat aircraft, such as fighters and bombers, are designed to destroy enemy equipment or personnel using their own aircraft ordnance. Combat aircraft are typically developed and procured only by military forces. Non-combat aircraft, such as cargo transports and tankers are not designed for combat as their primary function, but may carry weapons for self-defense. These mainly operate in support roles, and may be developed by either military forces or civilian organizations. In 1783, when the first practical aircraft (hot-air and hydrogen balloons) were established, they were quickly adopted for military duties. The first military balloon unit was the French Aerostatic Corps, who in 1794 flew an observation balloon during the Battle of Fleurus, the first major battle to feature aerial observation. Balloons continued to be used throughout the 19th century, including in the Napoleonic Wars and the Franco-Prussian War, for observation and propaganda distribution. During World War I, German Zeppelin airships carried out multiple air raids on British cities, as well as being used for observation. In the 1920s, the U.S. Navy acquired several non-rigid airships, the first one to see service being the K-1 in 1931. Use by the U.S. as well as other countries continued into World War II. The U.S. Navy retired its last balloons in 1963. Only a handful of lighter-than-air military aircraft were used since, such as the American Blimp MZ-3, used for research and development by the U.S. Navy from 2006 to 2017. Soon after the first flight of the Wright Flyer, several militaries became interested in powered aircraft. In 1909 the United States Army purchased the Wright Military Flyer, a two-seat observation aircraft, for the Aeronautical Division, U.S. Signal Corps. It served until 1911, by which time powered aircraft had become an important feature in several armies around the world. Airplanes performed aerial reconnaissance and tactical bombing missions in the Italo-Turkish war, and the First Balkan War saw the first naval-air operations. Photoreconnaissance and propaganda leaflet drops followed in the Second Balkan War. Air combat was a notable component of World War I, as fighter aircraft were developed during the war, long-range strategic bombing became a possibility, and airplanes were deployed from aircraft carriers. Airplanes also took on a greater variety of support roles, notably medical evacuation, and deployed new weapons like air-to-air rockets for use against reconnaissance balloons. Aviation technology advanced rapidly in the interwar period, and military aircraft became increasingly capable. Autogyros and helicopters were also developed at this time. During World War II, military aviation reached new heights. Decisive air battles influenced the outcome of the war, early jet aircraft flew combat missions, cruise missiles and ballistic missiles were deployed for the first time, airborne troops and cargo parachuted into battle, and the nuclear weapons that ended the war were delivered by air. In the Cold War era, aviation technology continued to advance at an extremely rapid pace. Jet aircraft exceeded Mach 1 and Mach 2, armament focus switched mainly to missiles, aircraft began carrying more sophisticated avionics, air-to-air refueling matured into practicality, and transport aircraft grew in size. Stealth aircraft entered development during the 1970s and saw combat in the 1980s. Condition: Very good.
Keywords: Reference Works, Encyclopedia, Military Aircraft, Avro, British Aerospace, Curtiss-Wright, Dassault, Eurofighter, Grumman, Halberstadt, Junkers, Kawanishi, Myasischchev, Northrop, Panavia, Ryan, Supermaring, Tupolev, Vickers, Zeppelin-Staaken