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Boeing B-52D Stratofortress (8511)
The B-52 was for a time the largest, heaviest aircraft ever flown. It came into its own in the Vietnam War. Equipped with ground-mapping radar and able to carry 84 internal and 24 external 500/750 pound bombs, it wreaked havoc in North Vietnam. This particular aircraft at Castle Air Museum was stationed at Utapao Royal Thai AB, where it carried out bombing missions against North Vietnam. By the end of the war 31 B-52s were lost, 15 of them during Operation Linebacker during December 1972. The "D" model was produced in 1956 and phased out in 1983, along with the tail gunner position. Later model B-52s were effective against Iraqi forces in Desert Storm. 94 B-52s have been updated and continue in service with both active and reserve units.