SF-S 137Squadron Manston June 1944 flown by F/O A.N.Sames
MR? 245 Squadron Holmesly 1944 flown by Squadron Leader Jack Collins
PR-m 609 Squadron Thorney Island June 1944
18-P 440 Squadron September 1944
TP-F 198 Squadron August 1944
ZY-Y 247 Squadron December 1944 Flown by Squadron Leader B.G. Stapleton
In 1938 the British Air Ministry issued Specification F.18/37 for a fighter, to be capable of at least 400 mph at 15,000 ft with an engine equipped with a two-speed supercharger. At Hawker, Sydney Camm, designer of the legendary Hurricane fighter, laid out designs for a successor to the Hurricane even before that masterpiece was to distinguish itself in the Battle of Britain.
Designed to be built with traditional Hawker construction methods, the Typhoon was powered with the new Napier Sabre engine, an ‘H’ pattern 24-cylinder monster producing 2,200 hp initially, rising to a whopping 3,500 hp in later models.
Initial Typhoons were built with ‘car-door’-style cockpit canopies with multi-pane glazing. This was later replaced with a ‘bubble’ clear-view canopy which gave excellent all-round vision for the pilot.
Many modifications and upgrades were incorporated in new Typhoons and retro-fitted to existing ones. Early production Typhoons suffered from tail section failures under the high-stress conditions of diving. Responsible for 23 pilot deaths, tail structure failure was a major issue for the design team and ultimately all Typhoons were updated using a series of external fish-plates, riveted to the transport joint, ahead of the tail-fin.
Carbon monoxide leaked from the engine compartment into the cockpit so pilots were ordered to wear oxygen masks at all times when the canopy was closed, even on the ground. Despite these initial production problems and continuing changes, the Typhoon became one of WWII's most successful ground attack aircraft and with the addition of long-range external tanks could penetrate deep into enemy territory, disrupting industry, destroying transport systems and clearing the way for the post-D-Day campaigns.