The scientific tourist #230 — B-24 “Liberator” bomber

On display at the Pima Air and Space Museum outside of Tucson, Arizona — it’s a Consolidated B-24 “Liberator” bomber:

B-24 panorama

The B-24 was a heavy bomber used by allied forces in WWII, and was of a more-modern design than the better-known B-17 it supplemented. Of the two, the B-24 was faster, had greater range, and could carry a much heavier bomb load. But the B-24 was less damage tolerant, harder to fly, and prone to in-flight fires.

Nearly 19,000 B-24s were built by five manufacturers over the course of the war, the last one coming off the assembly line in July of 1945. Those aircraft that survived WWII were soon declared obsolete; not being stored with future flights in mind, most subsequently decayed beyond usability. Currently only three are airworthy; another dozen or so (like Pima’s B-24J, “Bungay Buckaroo”) are on display in whole or in part in various museums.

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