Bristol Beaufighter

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Bristol Beaufighter
Bristol Beaufighter.jpg
Beaufighter Mk X of No. 404 Squadron RCAF
Bristol Beaufighter 2.jpg
Type Multi role aircraft
Role Night fighter, torpedo bomber, ground attack
Designer Roy Fedden
Manufacturer Bristol Aeroplane Company
Produced UK, Australia
Number built 5,928
Primary users RAF, RCAF, RAAF
In service 27 Jul 1940
Out of service 1960 in both UK and Australia


The Beaufighter saw extensive service during the war with the RAF (59 squadrons), Fleet Air Arm (15 squadrons), RAAF (seven squadrons), Royal Canadian Air Force (four squadrons), United States Army Air Forces (four squadrons), Royal New Zealand Air Force (two squadrons), South African Air Force (two squadrons) and the Free Polish Air Force; one squadron.

The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) also made extensive use of the type as an anti-shipping aircraft, such as during the Battle of the Bismarck Sea.

General characteristics

  • Crew: Two - pilot, observor
  • Length: 12.60 m
  • Wingspan: 17.63 m
  • Height: 4.83 m
  • Empty weight: 7,072 kg
  • Max takeoff weight: 11,521 kg
  • Powerplant: 2 x Bristol Hercules XVII or XVIII 14 cylinder engines
  • Maximum speed: 510 km/h
  • Range: 2,820 km
  • Service ceiling: 5,800 m
  • Armament
  • Guns: 4 x 20mm Hispano MkII cannon in nose; 1 x manually operated .303 Browning Machine Gun
  • Rockets: 8 x 60 kg rockets
  • Bombs: 2 x 110 kg bombs or 1 x Mark XIII Torpedo

Crew members

Ground Crew No. 30 Squadron