First flying in June 1942, the Grumman F6F Hellcat was a carrier based fighter aircraft powered by a 2,000 hp Pratt and Whitney R-2800 Doble Wasp engine. The Hellcat was the most successful aircraft in U.S. Naval and Marine history, credited for destroying 5,271 aircraft and making over 300 aces.
12,275 Hellcats were produced between 1942 and 1945, serving in Europe and the Pacific. After the war the demand for metals meant that most were scrapped. Today they are a rare sight in the sky with only around 5 still airworthy.
|F6F Hellcat preparing for takeoff from Yorktown. The motion of propellors causes an "aura" to form around this Grumman F6F Hellcat fighter on the aircraft carrier USSYorktown.||A side view of a section of the carrier Yorktown (CV 10) that shows the hangar deck (with hangar deck catapult) and flight deck, an F6F-3 Hellcat of Fighting Squadron (VF) 1 visible on the latter. Yorktown was placed in commission on April 15, 1943, and was nicknamed "The Fighting Lady." She carried the name of another carrier Yorktown (CV 5), which was lost at the Battle of Midway in June 1942.||F6F-3 Hellcats of Fighting Squadron (VF) 1 spotted on the flight deck of the carrier Yorktown (CV 10) ready for launch, TBF/TBM Avengers are visible behind them.|
|View of a formation of aircraft from Carrier Air Group (CVG) 3, including an F8F-1 Bearcat, TBM-3E Avenger, SB2C-5 Helldiver, and F6F-5 Hellcat, in formation.||
Men Work on Bombs on Aircraft Carrier. Surrounded by F6F's ordnancemen work on bombs on hanger deck of USS Yorktown. Officers and men in background watch movie, ca. 1943.
|An F6F-3 Hellcat of Fighter Squadron (VF) 15 launches from the hangar deck catapult on board the carrier Hornet (CV-12) operating off Hawaii, Taking the name of the first carrier Hornet (CV 8), which was sunk during the Guadalcanal campaign, the second Hornet was placed in commission on November 29, 1943.|
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