Mitsubishi A6M Zero

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On 19 May 1937, the Staff of the Imperial Navy issued a specification describing a schematic loads successor to the 12-Shi carrier fighter A5M; design presented by Mitsubishi competitor was given to the team of Jiro Horikoshi. The first prototype flew April 1, 1939; it was powered, as the second, by a Mitsubishi engine Zuisei 13 of 875 bhp at 3600 m.

On September 14, the unit 12-Shi was accepted as the fighter aircraft carrier Type 0, that is to say, Rei shiki Kanjo sentoki, abbreviated as Rei-sen: it's the name that history recorded for the famous "Jap Zero" .. The unit was also called A6M; The first two prototypes were of AGML, and the third a AGM2 one, powered by a Nakajima Sakae 12 engine of 950 hp at 4200 m, flew 18 January 1940. The model Sakae engine was chosen for series production : an additional prototype, 15 identical copies of pre-series (who fought in China from July 1940) and 48 copies of series were delivered under the name fighter aircraft carrier type O Model 11.

From 68 Rei-sen, had all copies of the ends of folding wings; 740 copies provided with this characteristic were built under the name of Model 21; both versions were identical and armed with two 20 mm guns and two 7.7 mm machine guns. Another version, the A6M3 name, flew in June 1941: it had not of folding wingtips, reducing its size of one meter; it was however an engine Sakae 21 1130 hp at takeoff. 343 copies were built under the name Model 32 before returning to the foldable wings: production continued under the name of Model 22 and Model 22-K for devices with a long barrel: Another 560 copies were constructed of autumn 1942 to the summer of 1943.





Specifications : 

Crew 1
Length 9.07 m
Wing span 12,00 m
Height 2.80 m
Drive An air-cooled 14-cylinder twin-engine Nakajima Sakae 21 with 831 kW (1,130 hp)
Maximum speed 561 km / h in 6,000 m altitude
Range 1,560 km
Service Ceilling 10,700 m
Arming with two 20-mm guns in the wings and two 7.7-mm MG above the engine
Up to 318 kg bombs
Total weight 2,940 kg

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