Wing Span: 48'
|The XF 15 was the last fighter that Curtiss would make for the US Navy. The Idea behind the composite-powered arrangement was to give the aircraft more low down power, as the early jet engines tended to take some time to reach full power, thus making take off and landing on a carrier some what hazardous as well as being vulnerable to attack from other planes, also it was hoped that using a piston engine would help to increases the jet's range.|
On 7/4/1944 the US Navy issued a contract for three prototypes with the first aircraft taking to the air on the 27/2/1945 with out it's jet engine to test the flight characteristics, with the jet engine being fitted one month later. The XF 15 then promptly crashed due to the failure of it's piston engine and was written off.
The second plane took to the air on 9/7/1945 followed by the third, with the original vertical tail being replaced by a T-tail on the remaining prototypes, testing continued until the end of 1946, when the program was canceled as the new generation of pure jet powered fighters, fulfilled the Navy's needs.
The 3rd XF-15
|A line drawing of the first Curtiss XF-15-C1, note the different tail design.|