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E-1 Tracer

During World War II the Navy and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology conducted experiments, codenamed Project Cadillac, with the development of airborne early warning equipment that would enable aircraft to detect enemy aircraft and ships at great distances. Modified TBM Avenger torpedo-bombers and later single-engine AF Guardians filled the role in the immediate postwar years until the development of the WF Tracer, which incorporated a TF Trader modified with twin-tails and a radome mounted atop the fuselage. Delivered to the fleet beginning in 1960, the WF Tracer (later redesignated E-1) was referred to as the "Stoof with a Roof" or "Willy Fudd" by those who flew it, and equipped carrier-based airborne early warning squadrons until retired in 1977. Their service included 56 deployments in support of Vietnam War operations.

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