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Boeing XB-15

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    The XB-15 was a larger version of the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress and had a wing span of 149 ft. (45.5 m). Construction was approved in February 1934 and its first flight was 15 October 1937.1 At the time, it was the largest plane in the United States and had internal wing passages for inflight engine maintenance.2 The XB-15 was always considered experimental and was grossly underpowered. The 850 hp Pratt & Whitney R-1830 Twin Wasps produced a disappointingly top speed of only 195 mph (314 km/h). Only one airplane was produced and afterwards, it converted to a transport with cargo doors and was relegated to cargo duties and redesignated as the XC-105.


1. William N. Hess. Wings of Fame. Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress. London: Aerospace Publishing Ltd., 1997. 41.
2. Lloyd S. Jones. U.S. Bombers. Fallbrook, California: Aero Publishers, 1974. 38.

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Created August 26, 2013. Updated January 20, 2023.