Service Tests on Airborne Searchlights,
ENGINEER BOARD FORT BELVOIR VA
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This report covers a program of service tests on Airborne Searchlights to determine their performance characteristics and relative advantages and disadvantages as compared with the standard 60-inch searchlight. The results of the tests indicated that the Airborne Searchlight compiled with all of the military characteristics which could be determined during the tests was transportable in one large or small door C-47 airplane, with personnel and necessary equipment was transportable on the ground in trailers at normal convoy speeds, or by towing on the attached dollies for short distances on roads at moderates speeds was suitable for tracking aircraft flying at low altitudes was only fair for tracking aircraft flying at medium altitudes not exceeding 10,000 feet was suitable for use with radar detector sets, but for short ranges only and was unsuitable for use in an amphibious landing unless special precautions are taken to prevent entry of sea water. Maintenance was required at frequent intervals during the test. Because of inherent design limitations and mechanical defects, the Airborne Searchlight did not equal the superior performance of the standard 60-inch searchlight for either low-flying or high-flying operations.
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