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Q1W Tokai "Lorna", Japanese Antisubmarine Patrol Aircraft


Photograph of Q1W "Lorna"

U.S. Air Force. Via Francillon (1979)


Kyushu Q1W Tokai ("Eastern Sea") "Lorna"


Specifications:


Crew

3 or 4

Dimensions

52'6" by 39'8" by 13'6"
16.0m by 12.1m by 4.1m
Wing area 411 square feet
38 square meters

Weight

6,839-11,724 lbs
3102-5318 kg
Maximum speed       200 mph at 4395 feet
322 km/h at 1340 meters

Cruise speed

150 mph at 3280 feet
241 km/h at 1000 meters

Climb rate

12.5 feet per second
3.8 meters per second

Service ceiling

14,730 feet
4490 meters
Power plant Two 610 hp (455 kW) Hitachi GK2C Amakaze 31 nine-cylinder radial engines driving three blade variable pitch propellers.

Armament

One flexible 7.7mm Type 92 machine gun in the rear cockpit
Optional 1 or 2 forward-firing 20mm Type 99 cannon

External stores

Two 250 kg (551 lb) bombs or depth charges
Range 834 miles
1342 km
Sensors
Type 3 radar
Magnetic anomaly detector

Production

A total of 153 Q1W at Kyushu Hikoki K.K. from 1943-9 to 1945-8


The Q1W Tokai "Lorna" was just about the only dedicated antisubmarine aircraft produced by any nation during the Second World War. It was equipped with a rudimentary Type 3 radar and magnetic anomaly detector and was configured with dive brakes to allow it to attack as a dive bomber. The cabin arrangement resembled the German Junkers 88 and allowed the crew to communicate with each other easily. The radar was poor enough that most searching was done by eyeball.

Development began in 1942 in response to a Navy specification for a three-seat antisubmarine aircraft with good loitering capability. The aircraft was wanted as quickly as possible, and designer Nojiri Eng had the prototype ready in September 1943. Production was authorized in the spring of 1944 but only a modest number could actually be produced. A version with a wooden rear fuselage to reduce aluminum requirements never went into production.

"Lorna" operated from Japan, Formosa, and China. Though it handled well, the aircraft was very slow and almost defenseless against Allied fighters, and it suffered heavy casualties late in the war attempting to patrol convoy routes that were already within Allied fighter range.

References

Francillon (1979)


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