an expert can be expected to know and recognize
them all. Bombers, fighters, fighter-bombers, and
reconnaissance planes may be propeller-driven or jet,
single- or multi-engine, straight-wing, delta-wing,
swept-wing, or combinations of these, and various
Instruction in identification of aircraft should
consist primarily of classroom lectures, slides, and
motion pictures, together with on-the-job instruction
when aircraft are operating in the ship's vicinity.
With each advance in aeronautical engineering and
design, aircraft are able to fly higher and faster. High-
speed characteristics tend to make aircraft of different
nations look very much alike, thus increasing the
difficulty of in-flight identification. For the foregoing
reasons, shipboard recognition training should stress
ability to recognize aircraft likely to be seen in a
local rather than a worldwide area of deployment.
Determination of the friendly or unfriendly character
of aircraft is a prime function of the ship's installed
IFF system, which can be used to interrogate aircraft
long before the craft are within visual range. Exact
names and designations may prove unimportant but
personnel should be taught to distinguish between
the various classes of aircraftbombers, fighters,
reconnaissance, transport, pilotless, and so forth.
Airplanes, like automobiles and people, do differ,
and their underlying differences can be detected. Basic
aircraft recognition features follow:
1. Fuselage. The fuselage is the main body of the
aircraft where all equipments required for control are
located and to which the wings and tail units are
attached. The foremost part of the fuselage is the nose.
Various types of fuselages are shown in figure 32.