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B57 Night Intruder

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Image of a plane in the sky with black text on blue background.

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During the Korean War, the U.S. Air Force was in need of a high-performance bomber that was capable of accurate weapon delivery at night and in poor weather conditions. The outdated Douglas B-29 Intruder could not meet those demands despite its success as an Allied plane in World War II. Since there was not enough time to design, build, and test a new bomber from scratch, the Americans looked to the United Kingdom for some help. The U.K. allowed the USAF to adapt its newly developed jet—the English Electric Canberra—to suit the wartime needs of the United States. The resulting product was the Martin B-57 Night Intruder, which was not only well equipped for volatile weather, but also fuel-efficient. In collaboration with the Glenn Martin Company, the USAF manufactured over 400 B-57 Night Intruders between 1951 and 1959. The aircraft took its maiden flight on July 20, 1953, and was officially retired in 1983. The plane was also sold and exported to other nations including Pakistan, which used the B-57 Night Intruder in the Indo-Pakistani Wars of 1965 and 1971.


Defence Journal. (2001, September). PAF and the three wars.

ScaleCraft (n.d.). Martin B-57 Night Intruder (Canberra).

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