MoMI appreciates content submissions* by visitors, and we are pleased to present here a selection of photos taken by a MoMI contributor during a tour of the Pima Air and Space Museum in Tucson, Arizona, on 28 December 2011.
The Pima Air and Space Museum is located next to the Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, the world's largest aircraft storage and preservation facility and home to the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group. The museum opened in May 1976 with 48 historic aircraft on display. Since then, it has grown to comprise nearly 300 aircraft, displayed over 80 acres. In addition to its own aircraft collection, the museum offers bus tours of the 'boneyard' of decommissioned military and commercial aircraft stored at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base.
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|The entrance to the Main Hangar of the Pima Air and Space Museum.|
The Main Hangar houses a variety of diverse aircraft, centred on the SR-71 Blackbird.
The U.S. Army retired the AH-1 in 1999, transferring many to NATO allies and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service for firefighting duties.
The Republic RF-84F Thunderflash, a photographic reconnaissance version of the F-84F Thunderstreak fighter-bomber. Of 3,428 F-84Fs built, 715 were of the RF-84F variant.
One of three Columbia XJL-1 amphibian prototypes, designed for the US Navy during the Second World War. When flight tests in 1947-48 uncovered numerous structural failures, the aircraft was cancelled.
Various vintage U.S. fighter aircraft parked outside the Pima Air and Space Museum. The aircraft at centre is a Grumman F9F-2 Panther, which entered service in 1947 and was retired by the U.S. Navy in 1958. A total of 1,382 F9F Panthers were built.
A lineup of classic U.S. fighters. From right to left: Grumman TF-9J Cougar; Grumman F9F-2 Panther; North American AF-1E Fury; Douglas F-6A Skyray; McDonnell F-3B Demon.
The McDonnell Douglas F-15A Eagle, in the livery of the U.S. Air Force's 325th Tactical Fighter Wing, Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida, circa 1992.
Retired historic fighters parked under the blue skies of Tucson, Arizona.
Various retired transport aircraft on display outside the Pima Air and Space Museum.
An iconic Trans World Airlines L-049 Constellation propeller-driven airliner, one of 88 (74 for airlines) built by Lockheed Martin beginning in 1945.
With the advent of the jet engine, the propeller-driven B-36 was obsolete and was soon replaced by the jet-powered B-47 and B-52 bombers. All of the U.S. Air Force's B-36s were retired by early 1959.
The B-36J variant was a high altitude model with strengthened landing gear, increased fuel capacity, reduced armament (tail guns only), and a reduced crew complement. A total of 33 B-36Js were built.
A Martin B-57E Canberra. The B-57E model was stripped of all combat equipment and re-equipped as a dedicated aerial target towing aircraft. A number of B-57Es were converted to bombers to replace B-57s lost during the Vietnam War.
Various models of Soviet MiG fighters on display outside the Pima Air and Space Museum.
A MiG-17PF Fresco D, a significantly improved version of the MiG-15. With an increased wing sweep, other aerodynamic enhancements, and a more powerful engine, the MiG-17P was the first true all-weather radar-equipped interceptor in the Soviet Union.
A diverse range of historic aircraft are parked on the dusty, sun-baked grounds the Pima Air and Space Museum.
A U.S. Coast Guard Sikorsky HH-3F Pelican. The HH-3F served the Coast Guard from 1967 to 1994 as its primary long-range search and rescue helicopter. Coast Guard Pelicans saved more than 23,000 lives during their operational service.
A Bell UH-1H Huey medevac helicopter (right); Bell OH-58A Kiowa (centre); and a Sikorsky UH-19B Chickasaw (left).
A number of surplus CH-54As have been purchased by civilian operators for use in fighting forest fires, hauling timber, and raising antennae and electrical towers.
Tour buses take Pima Air and Space Museum visitors around the aircraft 'boneyard' at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, the world's largest aircraft storage and disposal facility.
Lines of retired F-16 fighters, with cockpit canopies and upper fuselages wrapped in white plastic to protect from sun damage.
Dozens of salvaged military jet engines from scrapped aircraft are stored in rows in the desert.
A Grumman S-2 Tracker anti-submarine warfare aircraft. Entering service with the U.S. Navy in February 1954, a total of 1,284 Trackers were constructed, including many for U.S. allies. Argentina and Brazil still operate the Tracker.
With their rotors removed and wrapped in white protective plastic, a Kamen SH-2 Seasprite helicopter (left) and a Sikorsky CH-53E Super Stallion on display along the tour bus route at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base.
A Douglas A-4 Skyhawk.
A Grumman A-6 Intruder all-weather attack aircraft. Entering service in 1963, a total of 693 Intruders were built. The A-6 was retired by the U.S. Marine Corps in April 1993 and by the U.S. Navy in February 1997.
A McDonnell Douglas F/A-18B in the colours of the U.S. Navy's Blue Angels flight demonstration squadron.
A Beechcraft UC-12B, a derivative of the Super King Air A200C built for the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps for logistics support between bases. A total of 64 UC-12Bs were ordered by the U.S. Navy between 1979 and 1982.
A retired U.S. Air Force McDonnell F-101 Voodoo all-weather fighter.
|An F-16 Fighting Falcon.|
|A decommissioned Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II.|
A former United Airlines Boeing 727-200, serial number N7004U, built in 1963. The engines have been removed and all windows have been covered with white plastic wrap.
A Lockheed T-1 SeaStar trainer, a derivative of the T-33 Shooting Star. The SeaStar entered U.S. Navy service in May 1957 and, eventually, a total of 150 such aircraft were built. The T-1 was retired from U.S. Navy service in the 1970s.
A McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II twin-engine, all-weather fighter, formerly of the 20th Fighter Squadron (nicknamed 'Silver Lobos') based at Holloman Air Force Base, Alamogordo, New Mexico.
A view of the lines of KC-135 aircraft stored at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, pending scrapping.
Decommissioned KC-135 tankers parked in the desert awaiting scrapping.
A KC-135 tanker aircraft in the midst of being cut up.
Lines of decommissioned F/A-18A fighters await scrapping at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. Note that the aircraft are sitting on jacks, having already had their tires removed.
A Lockheed C-130 Hercules formerly of the 2nd Airlift Squadron, Pope Air Force Base, Fayetteville, North Carolina.