Captured Aircraft

The marriage of aviation and warfare has provided a major impetus for advancement of aviation technology This is particularly true during times of direct conflict. The result has been that combatants have taken a great interest into the developments made by their adversaries. This page is devoted to the efforts of the technical air intelligence units of the world's powers from the inception of aviation to today.


Contents:

World War I

World War II

Post -War

Miscellaneous

References


World War I

The most famous air technical intelligence coup in the First World War was the recovery of French ace Roland Garros' Morane-Saulnier Type L on April, 18, 1915. Garros was shot down and landed on the German side of the trenches. He was captured before he could destroy his machine. The Type L was equipped with deflector plates on the propellors that would allow machine guns to fire through the propellor arc, increasing accuracy. The system served as a stop-gap until Anthony Fokker perfected his interrupter gear that made firing through the propellor arc completely safe.

World War II

The combatants in the Second World War made a major effort to capture, study, and, in some cases, employ aircraft of their adversaries. The Allies had the Technical Air Intelligence Units (TAIU) whose specific job was to recover and gather captured aircraft for study of their technical and tactical capabilities. They were one of the first units into Japan after the surrender. They attempted to find four flyable examples of the more advanced aircraft types- one for the army, navy, British, and a spare. Their labors may be seen today in the world's museums, since many of these aircraft were preserved after their secrets were gleaned. The Germans also expended a considerable effort in technical intelligence as well.

Japanese Army Aircraft Evaluated by U.S.


References


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