P-38J-15 Lightning

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Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator

General info

P-38J-15 Lightning in the Garage.

The P-38J-15 Lightning is a Rank IV American heavy fighter with a battle rating of 4.3 (AB/RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.53 "Firestorm".

The main purpose, usage and tactics recommendations

General play style

Vehicle characteristics

The P-38J is a sleekly designed, two-engine monoplane made by Lockheed. This plane has a top speed of 431 mph (694 km/h) and a VNE of 460 mph (740 km/h). Its main armament consists of 1 AN/M2 20mm cannon and 4 12.7mm Browning machine guns. With upgrades, the Lightning can function as a multi-role fighter with Bazooka rockets or bombs to help lead your team to victory, both in the air and on the ground.

Tactics

When playing the P-38J, climb to a high altitude, search for the enemy, and then pick an enemy you feel confident in engaging.

Once these steps have been ticked-off, assuming you are above the enemy target, put the Lightning into a gradual descent. This gives allows you to maintain a speed advantage. As you are descending, make small course corrections, so you don't give the element of surprise away by shooting too soon, overshooting or being within view. When you are about 1-2 seconds away from your target, line your sights up and fire a short burst with your cannon and machine guns. Your target should now be heavily damaged or shot down. If you fail to damage your target, climb back up above using your energy advantage and repeat or move on.

Ground Battles
Using the Lightning in ground forces (RB) is very effective once you have unlocked the appropriate modules. FMBC Mk.1 allows you to equip 2 500lb bombs, which are mounted under your wings. To help get the bombs on target, put the plane into a steep dive. As you near the ground, drop the bombs then pull up. Make sure you either pull up with altitude to spare or have a timed fuse to avoid crashing or blowing yourself up. The M10 Bazooka module allows you to equip your P-38J with 2 triple Bazooka launchers. These are attached to the lower nose panel, and are very accurate. These are ideal for destroying tanks and bunkers.

Once the enemy ground units have been destroyed or you run out of external ordnance, you can use the Lightning to help maintain air superiority. This will help you secure that much wanted victory.

Specific enemies worth noting

Counter-tactics

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Excellent speed.
  • Excellent acceleration.
  • Excellent climb rate.
  • Very powerful armament, great for bomber hunting.
  • Nose mounted armament allows it to have great and fearsome head-on capability.
  • Multiple armament presets; allows it to function as ground attack and/or air superiority.
  • Good roll and turn time.
  • Good overall visibility in simulator matches.
  • Great air superiority aircraft.

Cons:

  • Fuel tanks catch on fire easily.
  • Low initial roll rate.
  • Unable to dive to put fires out without breaking wings.
  • Easy to rip wings in dives; no airbrakes installed unlike the P-38L.
  • Easy to black-out if your crew's G-Tolerance and Stamina are low .
  • Low cannon ammunition amount compared to other planes at the rank.

Specifications

Armaments

Offensive armaments

  • 1 x 20 mm AN/M2 cannon, nose-mounted (150 rpg)
  • 4 x 12.7 mm M2 Browning machine gun, nose-mounted (500 rpg = 2,000 total)

Payloads

  • 2 x 500 lbs AN-M64A1 bombs
  • 6 x M8 rockets

Engine & mobility

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator


Engine

Name: Allison V-1710-91 12-cylinder inline x2
  • Cooling type: Water
  • Max power: 1292 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Takeoff power: 1463 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Mass: 610 kg
Name: Allison V-1710-91 12-cylinder inline x2
  • Cooling type: Water
  • Max power: 1278 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Takeoff power: 1449 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Mass: 610 kg
Name: Allison V-1710-91 12-cylinder inline x2
  • Cooling type: Water
  • Max power: 1278 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Takeoff power: 1449 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Mass: 610 kg

Stat card

Stock
  • Max speed: 661 km/h
    • at height: 7,921 m
  • Max altitude: 12,192 m
  • Turn Time: 22.9 s
  • Rate of Climb: 13.7 m/s
  • Takeoff run: 332 m

Upgraded

  • Max speed: ___ km/h
    • at height: 7,921 m
  • Max altitude: 12,192 m
  • Turn Time: __._ s
  • Rate of Climb: _._ m/s
  • Takeoff run: 332 m
Stock
  • Max speed: 651 km/h
    • at height: 7,921 m
  • Max altitude: 12,192 m
  • Turn Time: 23.4 s
  • Rate of Climb: 15.9 m/s
  • Takeoff run: 332 m

Upgraded

  • Max speed: ___ km/h
    • at height: 7,921 m
  • Max altitude: 12,192 m
  • Turn Time: __._ s
  • Rate of Climb: _._ m/s
  • Takeoff run: 332 m
Stock
  • Max speed: 651 km/h
    • at height: 7,921 m
  • Max altitude: 12,192 m
  • Turn Time: 23.4 s
  • Rate of Climb: 15.9 m/s
  • Takeoff run: 332 m

Upgraded

  • Max speed: ___ km/h
    • at height: 7,921 m
  • Max altitude: 12,192 m
  • Turn Time: __._ s
  • Rate of Climb: _._ m/s
  • Takeoff run: 332 m

Performance

Warning this is still in the test phase and is probably incorrect. Take information with a grain of salt (data taken from 1.55)



0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
0
0.64
1.28
1.92
2.56
3.2
Horsepower in 1000hp
Altitude in 1000m

Supercharger Stage #1: 100%

Supercharger Stage #1: WEP



Modules and improvements

Depending on your preference and play style, you have two options: Air superiority and Ground Attack.

Air Superiority,
If your play-style is hunting down enemy planes, protecting bombers and aiming to be the ace of the sky, this path will help you:

Air Superiority
Stage Module
I Offensive 12mm then Fuselage
II New 12mm, Airframe then Compressor
III Offensive 20mm, Engine then Wing Repair
IV Engine Injection, New 20mm then Cover
V Once the above have been unlocked, unlock the reaming modules in any-order: FMBC Mk.1 and M10 Bazooka

Ground Attack,
If your play-style is hunting down enemy tanks, bases and installations; this path is recommended:

Ground Attack
Stage Module
I Offensive 12mm then Fuselage
II FMBC Mk.1, New 12mm, Airframe then Compressor
III Offensive 20mm, Engine then Wing Repair
IV M10 Bazooka, Engine Injection, New 20mm then Cover

__MODIFICATIONS__

History of creation and combat usage

Development

The concept of the plane was made in February 1937 when the US Army Air Corps made a requirement for a plane that had twin-engine and can act as an high-altitude interceptor that can hold a large amount of armament and ammunition. The term "interceptor" was used for the aircraft by the requirement authors, 1st Lt Benjamin S. Kelsey and Gordon P. Saville, to bypass the Air Corps' strict requirements on aircraft designs at the time. The specifications laid by this new requirements also called for a maximum speed of 360 mph (580 km/h) and able to climb to 20,000 ft altitude in six minutes, making it the most tough specifications at the time. Design proposals were made for the specifications, one of which would become the Bell P-39 Airacobra, but it was the Lockheed design team headed by Hall Hibbard and Clarence "Kelly" Johnson that made the final product. They made many designs with a twin-engine configuration. The prototypes made for the design used a twin-boom design to hold all the components of the aircraft. Various armaments were tested on the aircraft, from different machine gun combinations and auto cannons. It was finally settled to four M2 .50 cal machine guns and one Hispano 20 mm auto cannon. The aircraft armament configurations, all at the nose of the aircraft, was very unusual for an American aircraft design, as most of their designs and those of their foreign contemporaries had the armament mounted on the wings angled forward. Because of this mounting, the aircraft is able to fire at a longer distance accurately than wing-mounts.

P-38J

The P-38J model of the series was introduced into service in August 1943. Its distinctive form is the movement of the turbo-supercharger intercooler system from the leading edges of the wings to in between the oil coolers of the engine to protect them from combat damages. Thus, the J models of P-38s have a distinctive "chin" in the engine design. The empty spaces on the wing now made room for fuel tanks for an additional 55 gallons of fuel when installed. Other improvements in the P-38J's was a hydraulically boosted ailerons and flat bullet-proof windscreens. 2970 P-38J's were built during its production period.

Combat usage

The P-38 performed very well in the Pacific and European theaters during World War II. They were used in roles such as bomber and transport escorts, performing reconnaissance, Combat Air Patrols, ground attack, Search and Rescue and other important and critical roles.

Survivors

Unfortunately it is estimated that only five P-38J's survive to this day. Only two of them are still airworthy.

Screenshots and fan art

Skins and camouflages for the ___ from live.warthunder.com.

Additional information (links)

References


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p-38j.png

Icon-country-usa.png P-38J-15 Lightning
Nation USA
Manufacture Lockheed
Design Family XP-38G Lightning (U.S.)
P-38E Lightning (U.S.)
P-38G-1 Lightning (U.S.)
P-38L-5-LO Lightning (U.S.)
P-38K Lightning (U.S.)
Type Interceptor/Heavy Fighter
Fighting style Boom & Zoom
Ground Attack
Close Air Support
Strike Fighter
Tremendous Firepower

   Metric✓       Imperial   

   Metric       Imperial✓   

Characteristics
Empty Weight ~6480 kg
Empty Weight + fuel ~7594 kg
Takeoff Weight ~8500 kg
Wing Area ~30 m²
# Flap Positions 3 (Takeoff/Landing/Combat)
Number of Engines 2
Air Brakes no
Arrestor Gear no
Statistics
Power per Engine 1415 hp
WEP Duration infinite
top speed ~693.00 kph at 7921 m
Climb Rate ~19.60 m/s
Turn Time ~21.50 s
Wing loading (Empty) ~213.00 kg/m²
Characteristics
Empty Weight ~14286 lb
Empty Weight + fuel ~16742 lb
Takeoff Weight ~18739 lb
Wing Area ~327 ft²
# Flap Positions 3 (Takeoff/Landing/Combat)
Number of Engines 2
Air Brakes no
Arrestor Gear no
Statistics
Power per Engine 1415 hp
WEP Duration infinite
Top speed ~430.61 mph at 25988 ft
Climb Rate 64.30 ft/s
Turn Time 21.50 s
Wing loading (Empty) ~43.63 lb/ft²
Main Weapons
1 x AN/M2 150 RPG
4 x M2/early Browning 500 RPG
Payload Option 1
Without load Clean Plane
Payload Option 2
2 x 💣 500 lbs Bomb
Payload Option 3
6 x 🚀 114mm, 17.2kg M8 rocket
Limits
Max Speed limit 790 kph
Gear lmit 289 kph
Combat Flaps 534 kph
Max static +G's ~9
Max static -G's ~5
Optimal Velocities
Ailerons <321 kph
Rudder <460 kph
Elevators <500 kph
Radiator >240 kph
Limits
Max Speed limit 491 mph
Gear lmit 180 mph
Combat Flaps 332 mph
Max static +G's ~9
Max static -G's ~5
Optimal Velocities
Ailerons <199 mph
Rudder <286 mph
Elevators <311 mph
Radiator >149 mph
Manual Control
Mixer is controllable
Pitch is controllable
has automatic pitch
Radiator (water) is controllable
Radiator (oil) is not controllable
Oil and water uses combined radiator control
Supercharger is not controllable
Turbocharger is not controllable
Compressor settings 1
Optimal Altitude
7500 m
24606 ft
100% Enginepower 2540 hp
WEP Enginepower 2845 hp
* Warning this is still in the test phase and can be incorrect. Take information with a grain of salt (data from 1.57 initial release)