The B-29 Superfortress was the most capable bomber of World War II. It could carry more payload and fly faster and at higher altitudes than contemporary types such as the Boeing B-17, Consolidated B-24, or Avro Lancaster. Its performance enabled long-range systematic bombing of Japan in 1944 and 1945. Two modified B-29s dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan in August 1945, helping end the war in the Pacific.

The B-29 continued in frontline bomber service through the Korean War. The aircraft was also used in other roles, such as maritime patrol, aerial refueling, weather reconnaissance, and search and rescue. Specific B-29s were adapted as "motherships" for research aircraft in the late 1940s and 1950s, including Chuck Yeager's first supersonic flight in the Bell X-1. The design was further developed as the B-50, introduced in 1947.

The B-29 development program was an unprecedented industrial effort in the early 1940s. The aircraft introduced several innovations for bomber types, including pressurized crew areas, remotely-controlled gun turrets, and dual bomb bays with alternating bomb release. It was the world's heaviest production airplane at the time of its introduction. The B-29's refined aerodynamics benefited from significant wind tunnel testing.

The initial XB-29 prototype first flew from Boeing Field in Seattle, Washington on September 21, 1942. The powerful Wright R-3350 engines experienced chronic overheating issues during testing, leading to the crash of the second prototype just north of Boeing Field on February 18, 1943. Wartime production of the B-29 was spread among Boeing plants in Wichita, Kansas and Renton, Washington and built under license by Martin and Bell.

The Museum's B-29, known as T-Square 54, fought in the Pacific during World War II, flying at least 37 combat missions with the 875th Bomb Squadron, 498th Bomb Group. After the war, the bomber was converted to an aerial refueling tanker and served in the Korean War. The aircraft was then retired to the China Lake Naval Gunnery Range, where it remained until a rescue was organized in 1986 by volunteers from Lowry Air Force Base in Colorado. Restoration work was begun, but the closure of Lowry in 1994 resulted in the aircraft's transfer to The Museum of Flight, where detailed restoration continues while on public display.

This aircraft is on loan from the National Museum of the United States Air Force.

Serial Number:
44-69729
Registration:
44-69729
Wingspan:
141.25ft
Length:
99ft
Height:
28ft
Wing Area:
1 739.00ft²
Empty Weight:
69,610lbs
Gross Weight:
105,000lbs
Maximum Speed:
365mph
Cruise Speed:
220mph
Power Plant:
Four Wright R-3350-23 engines, 2,200 horsepower each
Range:
5,830miles

360˚ Panoramas

Cockpit
Gunner Position
Tail

Matterport 3D Tour

B-29 Matterport 3D Tour

The B-29 Superfortress was the most capable bomber of World War II. It could carry more payload and fly faster and at higher altitudes than contemporary types such as the Boeing B-17, Consolidated B-24, or Avro Lancaster. Its performance enabled long-range systematic bombing of Japan in 1944 and 1945. Two modified B-29s dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan in August 1945, helping end the war in the Pacific.

The B-29 continued in frontline bomber service through the Korean War. The aircraft was also used in other roles, such as maritime patrol, aerial refueling, weather reconnaissance, and search and rescue. Specific B-29s were adapted as "motherships" for research aircraft in the late 1940s and 1950s, including Chuck Yeager's first supersonic flight in the Bell X-1. The design was further developed as the B-50, introduced in 1947.

The B-29 development program was an unprecedented industrial effort in the early 1940s. The aircraft introduced several innovations for bomber types, including pressurized crew areas, remotely-controlled gun turrets, and dual bomb bays with alternating bomb release. It was the world's heaviest production airplane at the time of its introduction. The B-29's refined aerodynamics benefited from significant wind tunnel testing.

The initial XB-29 prototype first flew from Boeing Field in Seattle, Washington on September 21, 1942. The powerful Wright R-3350 engines experienced chronic overheating issues during testing, leading to the crash of the second prototype just north of Boeing Field on February 18, 1943. Wartime production of the B-29 was spread among Boeing plants in Wichita, Kansas and Renton, Washington and built under license by Martin and Bell.

The Museum's B-29, known as T-Square 54, fought in the Pacific during World War II, flying at least 37 combat missions with the 875th Bomb Squadron, 498th Bomb Group. After the war, the bomber was converted to an aerial refueling tanker and served in the Korean War. The aircraft was then retired to the China Lake Naval Gunnery Range, where it remained until a rescue was organized in 1986 by volunteers from Lowry Air Force Base in Colorado. Restoration work was begun, but the closure of Lowry in 1994 resulted in the aircraft's transfer to The Museum of Flight, where detailed restoration continues while on public display.

This aircraft is on loan from the National Museum of the United States Air Force.

Serial Number:
44-69729
Registration:
44-69729
Wingspan:
141.25ft
Length:
99ft
Height:
28ft
Wing Area:
1 739.00ft²
Empty Weight:
69,610lbs
Gross Weight:
105,000lbs
Maximum Speed:
365mph
Cruise Speed:
220mph
Power Plant:
Four Wright R-3350-23 engines, 2,200 horsepower each
Range:
5,830miles

360˚ Panoramas

Cockpit
Gunner Position
Tail

Matterport 3D Tour

B-29 Matterport 3D Tour