The Mitsubishi Type 96 A5M 'Claude' was a single seat carrier fighter used by the Japanese Navy during the late 1930s and early 1940s.

History

Mitsubishi Ka-14

Developed to meet a 1934 requirement issued by the IJN, the Ka-14 made its first flight on 4 February 1935. During early trials, the aircraft demonstrated a top speed of 280 mph (450 km/h), comfortably exceeding the 217 mph (350 km/h) specified in the requirement. Unfortunately, the Ka-14 also demonstrated some aerodynamic shortcomings, resulting in the inverted gull wing being replaced on the second prototype by a conventional monoplane wing, with this configuration being selected for production as the A5M in the autumn of 1936.[2]

A5M1

Powered by a Nakajima Kotobuki 2 KAI-ko engine rated at 630 hp at 4,920 ft (1,500 m), and armed with a pair of 7.7 mm machine guns, the A5M1 became the first shipboard cantilever monoplane fighter to enter service anywhere in the world. Seventy five examples were delivered before production switched to the A5M2.[3]

A5M2

A5M3

References

  1. Avistar
  2. World Aircraft Information Files Aviation Partwork. Midsummer Books Ltd. File 901 Sheet 30 (A-Z of Aircraft:M - Mitsubishi A5M (Navy Type 96 Carrier fighter) to Mitsubishi B2m (3MR4, Navy Type 89-1 Carrier Attacker) )
  3. Green, William and Gordon Swanborough. Complete Book of Fighters. Salamander Books. 2001. ISBN 1-84065-269-1 Page 408.


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