Battle Cruiser, a large, fast, heavily armed warship. The battle cruisers of World War I and World War II were the size of battleships and had the heavy guns of battleships, but were lightly armored, giving them the speed of cruisers. During World War I, they scored successes against smaller and older ships, but proved vulnerable against battleships and other battle cruisers. During World War II, only a few battle cruisers were used; most notable was the British vessel Hood, which was destroyed by the German battleship Bismarck in 1941. No more battle cruisers were built until the Soviet Union built two during the 1980's. They are the size of small battleships and their main armament consists of surface-to-surface and surface-to-air missiles.
The Nieuport 17 incorporated the best features of monoplanes and biplanes in what was termed the sesquiplane setup. It featured a large top wing and a smaller lower wing joined by a V-shaped strut. Learn the advantages of this classic hybrid design.
The Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird first flew in 1964, and since that time it has remained the world's fastest aircraft. Tanks in the inner wings and upper fuselage carry the 80,000 pounds of special, superheated fuel.