Ling-Temco Vought USA

Vought OS2U Kingfisher

Vought OS2U Kingfisher

USA Aircraft

Ling-Temco Vought

The Vought OS2U Kingfisher is an American catapult-launched observation floatplane

Goto Vought Aircraft

The Vought OS2U Kingfisher is an American catapult-launched observation floatplane. It was a compact mid-wing monoplane, with a large central float and small stabilizing floats. Performance was modest because of its low-powered engine. The OS2U could also operate on fixed, wheeled, taildragger landing gear.

The OS2U was the main shipboard observation seaplane used by the United States Navy during World War II, and 1,519 of the aircraft were built. It served on battleships and cruisers of the US Navy, with the United States Marine Corps in Marine Scouting Squadron Three (VMS-3), with the United States Coast Guard at coastal air stations, at sea with the Fleet Air Arm of the Royal Navy, and with the Soviet Navy. The Royal Australian Air Force also operated a few Kingfishers from shore bases.

Operational History

The first 54 Kingfishers were delivered to the U.S. Navy beginning in August 1940 and six had been assigned to the Pearl Harbor-based Battle Force before the end of the same year. Many of the following 158 OS2U-2s were attached to flight training at Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida, but 53 were assigned to equip the newly established Inshore Patrol Squadrons, based at NAS Jacksonville, Florida. In 1942, nine more Inshore Patrol Squadrons were established, all exclusively equipped with OS2N-1s built by the Naval Aircraft Factory

RoleObservation floatplane
First flight1938
Retired1959 (Cuba)
Primary usersUnited States Navy
Royal Navy
Royal Australian Air Force
Soviet Navy
Number built1,519


Gilbert Taylor


15 aircraft, operated 1942–1957.
Operated four aircraft between 1942 and 1959.
 Dominican Republic
(Three aircraft)
Six aircraft, 201 Squadron.
24 aircraft, not delivered in time for hostilities.
 Soviet Union
2 aircraft on the ship USS Milwaukee (Murmansk)
 United Kingdom
Received 100 aircraft.
 United States
Received six OS2U-3s in 1942 under Lend Lease.[10]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 2
  • Length: 33 ft 7.2 in (10.241 m)
  • Wingspan: 35 ft 10.7 in (10.940 m)
  • Height: 14 ft 8 in (4.47 m)
  • Wing area: 261.9 sq ft (24.33 m2)
  • Airfoil: root: NACA 23015; tip: NACA 23009[23]
  • Empty weight: 3,335 lb (1,513 kg)
  • Gross weight: 4,980 lb (2,259 kg)
  • Max takeoff weight: 6,000 lb (2,722 kg)
  • Fuel capacity: 144 US gal (120 imp gal; 545 l) in an integral wing tank
  • Powerplant: 1 × Pratt & Whitney R-985-AN2 Wasp Junior 9-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine, 450 hp (340 kW) for take-off
400 hp (298 kW) at 5,000 ft (1,524 m)



  • Maximum speed: 171 mph (275 km/h, 149 kn) at 5,000 ft (1,524 m)
  • Cruise speed: 152 mph (245 km/h, 132 kn) with 75% power at 6,000 ft (1,829 m)
  • Landing speed: 55 mph (48 kn; 89 km/h)
  • Range: 908 mi (1,461 km, 789 nmi) with 75% power at 6,000 ft (1,829 m)
  • Service ceiling: 18,200 ft (5,500 m)
  • Rate of climb: 960 ft/min (4.9 m/s) at 4,000 ft (1,219 m)
  • Wing loading: 19 lb/sq ft (93 kg/m2)
  • Power/mass: 0.08 hp/lb (0.13 kW/kg)


Aircraft of comparable role, configuration, and era


Aircrafttoaal encyclopedia

The first incarnation of Vought was established by Chance M. Vought and Birdseye Lewis in 1917. In 1928, it was acquired by United Aircraft and Transport Corporation, which a few years later became United Aircraft Corporation; this was the first of many reorganizations and buyouts. During the 1920s and 1930s, Vought Aircraft and Chance Vought specialized in carrier-based aircraft for the United States Navy, by far its biggest customer. Chance Vought produced thousands of planes during World War II, including the F4U Corsair.