The Northrop YC-125 was a military version of the Northrop N-23 "Pioneer" commercial cargo aircraft. Although a derivative of the Northrop model N-23 commercial aircraft, the C-125 was far more powerful than the N-23. It was a shoulder-wing aircraft with fixed landing gear, and three engines. For the USAF 23 were built: 13 YC-125A tactical transports, and 10 YC-125B Arctic rescue aircraft. Their operational career was short.
The YC-125 series was intended to satisfy two types of missions for the Air Force: troop and equipment transport to forward combat areas and Arctic rescue. The YC-125 was designed to operate from rough, short airfields and to be easily maintained. The C-125 was equipped with three Wright R-99 Cyclone radial engines, each with a power of 1200 hp. For takeoff from short airstrips, the plane could be equiped with six rocket boosters (JATO) by the thrust of 454 kg.ch, which made possible for aircraft to take off less than with 500 feet. It could transport 32 landing force members or 5450 kg of cargo. As entrance served cargo the ladder- hatchway under the fuselage, and the counter of tailed wheel worked as jack, raising the tail end of the fuselage with loading of bulky equipment.
In March 1948 Northrop obtained a contract for 23 aircraft N -32 raider. Thirteen YC-125A's were ordered to test the aircraft's ability to haul troops and cargo. Ten additional aircraft were ordered, slightly modified as YC-125B's, to test their capabilities in the Arctic rescue role. The first flight of the YC-125A occurred on 01 August 1949, and deliveries to the Air Force began in 1950. The tests found the aircraft to be significantly underpowered for the intended missions. Furthermore, helicopters were recognized as a better solution for moving troops into forward areas and for performing rescue missions. As a result, the YC-125s were sent to Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas, to be used as ground maintenance trainers. They were declared surplus in 1955.
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