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North American A3J/A-5 Vigilante

The A-5 was designed to meet a US Navy requirement for a high-performance all-weather attack aircraft.  Originally designated the A3J, the prototype first flew on 31 August 1958.

Redesignated the A-5 in 1962, the Vigilante was capable of delivering a nuclear bomb.  Changes in Navy policy cut short the A-5's career as a Mach 2 strike aircraft; however, as the RA-5 the Vigilante was a successful reconnaissance aircraft.

Specifications (RA-5C)





Type: Attack/Reconnaissance
Engines: two 17,860 lb (8101 kg) afterburning thrust General Electric J79-GE-10 turbojets
A3J: US Navy Attack (prior to 1962)
A-5: US Navy Attack (after 1962)
RA-5: US Navy Reconnaissance

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