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By Jonathan Martin; Robert Powell

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The first production HP. 52, now known to the Royal Air Force as the Handley Page Hampden Mk I, flew its initial trials flight on 24 June 1938 following the issue of promising orders. The first example to serve with the RAF was passed to the Central Flying School at Upavon, and by December 1938 Nos 49, 50 and 83 Squadrons of RAF 306 Bomber Command were in the process of re-equipment. On the outbreak of war Hampden Mk I bombers were in service with Nos 44, 49, 50, 61, 83, 106, 144 and 185 Squadrons based in Lincolnshire and H u n t i n g d o n s h i r e u n d e r No.

These smashed RAF and RAAF facilities at Alor Star, Sungei P a t a n i and B u t t e r w o r t h , being escorted by Nakajima Ki-27 and Ki-43 fighters. In the flush of Japanese victory in 1941-2 the Mitsubishi Ki-21, codenamed 'Sally', performed well; only over Rangoon over December 1941 and January 1942 did the Ki-2 Is suffer heavy casualties. The Ki-21-IIb was the final model to enter service, which was seen on all fronts in the Pacific and Far East theatres, Some 2,064 Ki-2 Is were built, Specification Mitsubishi Ki-21-lib Type: five-seat medium bomber Powerplant: two 1,500-hp (1119-kW) Mitsubishi Ha-101 (Army Type 100) radial piston engines Performance: maximum speed 486 km/h (302 mph) at 4720 m (15,485 ft); cruising speed 380 km/h (236 mph); climb to 6000 m (19,685 ft) in 13 minutes 13 seconds; service ceiling Mitsubishi Ki-21-lib of the Imperial Japanese Army.

06 n/ The Hampden did not have any power-operated gun turrets, and so with only hand-held guns for tail defence it was particularly vulnerable in the presence of figh ters. This is a Hampden Mkl with Bristol Pegasus engines. E. C. Walker, started work on a light bomber constructed entirely of wood to offset the demand for strategically vital materials that war would inevitably bring. After a 1940 order of 50, built to Specification B, I/ 40, the first prototype de Havilland Mosquito flew on 25 November 1940, powered by two 1,460-hp (1089-kW) Merlin 21s.

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