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Canberra bomber for Rob and Steve!

Member Since Jul 3, 2006
2944 Images, Last upload Jul 30, 2015

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Canberra bomber

The Canberra bomber was Australia's first jet bomber. The Lincoln bomber had been in Australian service for only a short period of time when it became apparent the age of the propeller-heavy bomber was on the decline. The RAAF needed a more modern bomber than the Lincoln and in 1950 an order was placed for 48 English electric Canberras.

The Canberras were built in Australia, under licence, by the Government Aircraft Factory (GAF). Its Rolls Royce Avon engines were built by the Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation (CAC).

The first Australian built Canberra bomber flew in May 1953, entering service with 82 Wing in December, and the last was delivered in September 1958. In addition to these 48 Australian Canberras, the RAAF also flew seven British Canberras (three of which were on loan from the RAF).

The Canberras were flown by 1, 2, and 6 Squadrons, although they only saw operational service with 2 Squadron - during the Malayan Emergency and the Vietnam War. The Canberras were also flown by 2 Squadron for the longest peiod of time, from December 1953 until June 1982.

Five aircraft (A84-201 and 203-206) were converted to dual control Mk 21 trainers in 1958-59.

In the mid 1970s the Canberras were gradually replaced by the General Dynamics F-111.


English Electric/GAF Canberra Mk 20/Mk 21

Type: Tactical bomber

Entered service: 1953

Crew: 2

Wing span: 19.5 m

Length: 19.96 m

Weight (laden): 22 680 kg

Ceiling endurance: 45,000 ft

Speed: cruising speed 703 km/h; max. 933 km/h

Armament: max. bomb load 3,629 kg. The typical load during the Vietnam War was six 340 kg bombs, four in the bomb bay and one under each wing tip.

Below is a closeup shot I took of one of the Rolls-Royce Avon MK 109 engines.

Please zoom on both photos for more detail.

December 31, 2012
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Image Comments

Dec 31, 2012 1:30:07 am
Superb capture my friend.
God Bless.

by kgb224 Homepage »

Dec 31, 2012 1:57:06 am
Looks very nice. Great aircraft.

by knupps Homepage »

Dec 31, 2012 2:28:37 am
A good flight into the year 2013!
I wish you all good....

by JuliSonne Homepage »

Dec 31, 2012 2:37:41 am
Nice photos and zoom is worth it too! The information is interesting as well!

by whaleman Homepage »

Dec 31, 2012 4:52:53 am

by alanwilliams Homepage »

Dec 31, 2012 4:53:50 am
Amazing capture Andrew.
I love these along with the Hunters, Vampires and Vulcans of the time.
Nice shot of the Rolls-Royce Avon too, i've not seen one of these uncovered like this before.

Happy New Year mate and enjoy the VB!

by Maxidyne Homepage »

Dec 31, 2012 8:05:11 am
Very cool photos and information
Happy New Year to you and yours

by Faemike55 Homepage »

Dec 31, 2012 10:11:27 am
Beautiful mate.. Thanks!!!!!!!
The last RAF Canberra's were based not far from me, so I can still remember their shape flapping around! Great memories! Thanks again...

by debbielove Online Now!   Homepage »

Dec 31, 2012 10:35:59 am
One Man Gang Pilots this craft? Kewl.... Hope one day that we'll never need bombers... Have a safe and Happy New Year! Aloha

by sharky_ Homepage »

Dec 31, 2012 11:50:43 pm
Except, if they made one today, the "Canberra" bomber would have three pilots and they'd each try taking off from a different runway...
Great to see one in such good condition and not in a paddock...

by Briney Homepage »

Jan 1, 2013 12:08:22 am
Great shot of this plane, they are something else!!

by beachzz Homepage »

Jan 1, 2013 1:14:06 am
Fine photo Andrew. What a great aircraft. We used them as B-57s...built under license by the Glen L. Martin Company. And like you, we flew them for 30 years between 1953 and 1983.

by bmac62 Homepage »

Feb 6, 2013 10:58:49 pm
A beautiful plane and especially like the engine photo that you included!

by danapommet Homepage »


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