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Hanglands
07-15-2007, 11:04 AM
Hi,

Some time ago I read about Turbin lights. They were an idea used for night fighter support, and were, I would guess, used as a means to avoid having to fit radar to all/many night fighters.

The idea was a failure and was eventually binned.

I forgot about it until I met this man down at Legends Aviation in Kent :

http://i105.photobucket.com/albums/m203/ChickenHawk_2006/TerryClarke.jpg

He is Flight Lieutenant William 'Tom' Clark DFM, of 219 Squadron. He was W/op Gunner on Blenheims originally, and later Mosquitos.

The second time I met him, he told me his story of Turbin lights. This is pretty much how they are used :

http://i105.photobucket.com/albums/m203/ChickenHawk_2006/turbinlight.jpg

A Mosquito (Think Bostons used too) fitted with a Turbin light finds a German aircraft by radar. The Turbin aircraft has luminous paint on the upper surfaces of its wings so that A Hurricane can fly above it and follow it. Once the Turbin plane is within range and directly behind the invader, the Turbin light is switched on and the Hurricane goes in for the kill.

I tried to re-enact this scenario in Il-2. Unfortunately, landing lights are not fitted to the Mosquito, so after finding an alternative aircraft and spending an age lining up on it in a pitch black sky, I found that the light only illuminates ground objects. You cant illuminate anything that is not on the ground. Damn!

So, anyway, Tom Clark spoke with some dispair evident in his voice about when they came and stripped everything out of his Mossie and replaced it with one whole ton of batteries, and a Turbin light.
He said the worst thing about it all was flying in such close formation with fighters in the pitch black.


Here is about the only web link I can find for them : http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/stories/85/a4167885.shtml
Once again, courtesy of the Beebs Peoples War Pages.

Regards.

Hanglands
07-15-2007, 11:04 AM
Hi,

Some time ago I read about Turbin lights. They were an idea used for night fighter support, and were, I would guess, used as a means to avoid having to fit radar to all/many night fighters.

The idea was a failure and was eventually binned.

I forgot about it until I met this man down at Legends Aviation in Kent :

http://i105.photobucket.com/albums/m203/ChickenHawk_2006/TerryClarke.jpg

He is Flight Lieutenant William 'Tom' Clark DFM, of 219 Squadron. He was W/op Gunner on Blenheims originally, and later Mosquitos.

The second time I met him, he told me his story of Turbin lights. This is pretty much how they are used :

http://i105.photobucket.com/albums/m203/ChickenHawk_2006/turbinlight.jpg

A Mosquito (Think Bostons used too) fitted with a Turbin light finds a German aircraft by radar. The Turbin aircraft has luminous paint on the upper surfaces of its wings so that A Hurricane can fly above it and follow it. Once the Turbin plane is within range and directly behind the invader, the Turbin light is switched on and the Hurricane goes in for the kill.

I tried to re-enact this scenario in Il-2. Unfortunately, landing lights are not fitted to the Mosquito, so after finding an alternative aircraft and spending an age lining up on it in a pitch black sky, I found that the light only illuminates ground objects. You cant illuminate anything that is not on the ground. Damn!

So, anyway, Tom Clark spoke with some dispair evident in his voice about when they came and stripped everything out of his Mossie and replaced it with one whole ton of batteries, and a Turbin light.
He said the worst thing about it all was flying in such close formation with fighters in the pitch black.


Here is about the only web link I can find for them : http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/stories/85/a4167885.shtml
Once again, courtesy of the Beebs Peoples War Pages.

Regards.

WOLFPLAYER2007
07-15-2007, 01:15 PM
Damn this is so mean, crazy brits. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Waldo.Pepper
07-15-2007, 05:47 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">I would guess, used as a means to avoid having to fit radar to all/many night fighters. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

The initiatives real charms were to be the magical transformation of ordinary day fighters into effective night fighters with no additional expenditure.

It was a dismal failure that the flight crews knew would be a failure even before they tried it. The flight crews knew what would work before they tried it. They knew it would never work, just like they knew AI Mk V would be a step backward as well.

One Turbinlite aircraft was intended to fly information at night with two Hurricanes. That part alone was unworkable. I would have thought that if you can lay a beam of light on an enemy plane you could lay a stream of bullets/cannon shells on it instead. However, the driving force behind the project had enough clout during the war that several aircraft were modified and crews diverted onto this foolish project.

Viper2005_
07-15-2007, 06:23 PM
Don't forget that:

1) German night bombing was of only limited effectiveness militarily due to the difficulty of hitting pinpoint targets with any accuracy and the German's lack of a strategic bomber.

2) Although Radar, and particularly AI radar was considered to be the most effective long term solution to the problem (other than putting tanks on the enemy's runways, which is the ultimate in air superiority), there was a requirement to be seen to be doing something in order to help maintain public morale in the meantime.

The key advantage of the Turbin light programme was that it provided a very visible demonstration to the public that the authorities were attempting to tackle the problem. It was in this respect equivalent to firing visually aimed AAA guns at nothing in particular during a raid...

HellToupee
07-16-2007, 02:47 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">One Turbinlite aircraft was intended to fly information at night with two Hurricanes. That part alone was unworkable. I wo </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


wernt turbin lights successfully used later against uboats? Not in the same way tho i mean :P