The Grumman XF5F Skyrocket was a prototype twin-engine shipboard fighter interceptor.
The United States Navy ordered one prototype, model number G-34, from Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation on 30 June 1938; its designation was XF5F-1.
The aircraft had a unique appearance:
The forward “nose” of the fuselage did not extend forward of the wing.
Provisions were included for two 20 mm (0.906 in) Madsen cannon as armament.
In 1938 Grumman presented a proposal to the U. S. Navy for a twin engine carrier-based aircraft, unlike any other fighter aircraft that had ever been considered.
The design was for a lightweight fighter (under 10,000 lbs maximum take-off weight) powered by two 1,200 hp Wright R-1820 engines, with propellers geared to rotate in opposite directions to cancel out the effects of each engine’s torque, promising high-speed, and an outstanding rate of climb.
The XF5F Skyrocket was a low-wing monoplane with a short fuselage that began aft of the wing’s leading edge with a twin tail assembly that featured a pronounced dihedral to the horizontal stabilizer.
The main landing gear and tail wheel were fully retractable.
The Grumman XP-50 was a land-based development of the shipboard XF5F-1 Skyrocket fighter, entered into a United States Army Air Corps contest for a twin-engine heavy interceptor aircraft.
The USAAC placed an order for a prototype on 25 November 1939, designating it XP-50, but it lost the competition to the Lockheed XP-49.
First assigned Design 34, later G-41 by the builder, Grumman, the design was entered into competition alongside proposals from Bell, Brewster, Curtiss, Lockheed, and Vought.
The XP-50 design was similar to that of the XF5F-1 with modifications to the fuselage nose to house the nose-wheel of the tricycle landing gear and provisions for self-sealing fuel tanks and pilot armour.
The planned armament was two 20 mm (.79 in) cannon and two .50 in (12.7 mm) machine guns.