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Curtiss O-52

From PlaneSpottingWorld, for aviation fans everywhere

The Curtiss O-52 "Owl" is an observation aircraft used by the United States Army Air Corps before and during World War II.

In 1940, the Air Corps ordered 203 Curtiss O-52s for observation duties. Upon delivery, the aircraft was used in military maneuvers with the U.S.A., but following America's entry into WW II, the AAF determined that the aircraft did not possess sufficient performance for "modern" combat operations in oversea areas. As a result, the O-52 was relegated to courier duties within the U.S.A. and short-range submarine patrol over the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

The O-52 was the last "O" type aircraft procured in quantity for the Air Corps. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, the "O" designation was cancelled and "L" for liaison type aircraft was adopted to replace it.

Museum displays


  • Span: 40 ft 9 1/2 in (12.4 m)
  • Length: 26 ft 4 3/4 in (8 m)
  • Height: 9 ft 11 1/2 in (3 m)
  • Weight: 5,364 lb (2433 kg) loaded
  • Armament: One forward and one rearward firing .30-cal (7.62 mm) machine gun
  • Engine: Pratt & Whitney R-1340-51 of 600 hp (447 kW)
  • Cost: $31,000
  • Maximum speed: 215 mph (346 km/h)
  • Cruising speed: 169 mph (272 km/h)
  • Range: 455 miles (732 km)
  • Service Ceiling: 23,200 ft (7,100 m)

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