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Thread: Battlle of Britain squadron analysis

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    Default Battlle of Britain squadron analysis

    I am looking for an article which appeared in either AEROPLANE MONTHLY or FLYPAST within the last 15 years (I think). This dealt with the fighter squadrons of the Battle of Britain and entailed a scholarly approach, comparing their effectiveness in terms of number of victories claimed in relation to the number of days engaged. Can anyone guide me as to the exact magazine and issue ?

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    Hugh I remember the article as well.. But not when and where

    I seem to remember it might have been done by someone from Poland

    I suggest posting question on flypast forum

    Paul
    Last edited by paulmcmillan; 9th October 2014 at 12:06.

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    Hello

    Being a subscriber to aeroplane, I'm quite sure it was in it. But I may be wrong and someone will just prove that within a few minutes... ;-)

    I too remember this article, which was a new approach, speaking of "efficiency" rather than just the figure. I reckon too it was a long time ago, 10 years at least.

    Joss

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    Hello,

    The article you are after appeared in Aeroplane Monthly:

    Battle of Britain Top Guns:
    Alcorn,John
    September 1996. Vol.24. No.9 Issue No.281.
    pp.14-18.

    John Alcorn has produced the results of lengthy research into the performance of individual RAF fighter squadrons during the Battle. Readers may find his conclusions interesting - and perhaps controversial.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 9th October 2014 at 12:54.

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    Yes but after critic he updated it (e.g. he used BoB Then And Now Mk V as his basic source instead of the older Mason's The Battle over Britain)
    The updated article was published in Aeroplane July 2000.

    HTH
    Juha

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    The Author of the original article, John Alcorn, has this to say about his sources:

    Methodology.

    Before discussing the findings, an explanation is in order on how they were reached. The main sources were: The Battle of Britain Then and Now Mk V, various authors; Battle Over Britain, Francis Mason; The Hardest Day, 19 August 1940, Alfred Price; The Narrow Margin, Derek Wood and Derek Dempster; Aces High, Christopher Shores and Clive Williams, and Angriff Westland, Dilip Sarkar.

    Using research kindly supplied by John Freeman from Fighter Command records (file AIR16/960 in the Public Records Office), a day-by-day list of RAF squadron victory claims and losses was prepared for the 123-day period under review (July 1 to October 31 1940). A similar day-by-day listing gave the known Luftwaffe losses during the same period. By collating information regarding times, locations and targets, it was possible to link German losses and RAF claims.

    The conclusions from the various source works were accepted at face value. Where sources gave conflicting information l used my judgement, usually deferring to the verdicts from John Foreman or the Then and Now publications. When multiple squadrons' claims exceeded Luftwaffe losses during an action, the victories were credited in proportion to the claims from each unit. In 30 cases it was not possible to credit German losses to individual RAF squadrons, these losses, 2,5 per cent of the total, were omitted from the analysis except where specifically mentioned.

    The above data was assembled to produce Table 1. This shows victory claims and credits, accuracy of claims, RAF unit losses, victory/loss ratios and the number of days each squadron was in action. It is believed this is the first serious attempt to quantify the relative performance of Fighter Command units during the Battle. (p.14).

    Whilst the information on the update is welcomed, you seem to be a bit confused about the sources used. l ceased my subscription to Aeroplane Monthly in 1997, hence never saw the update.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 9th October 2014 at 22:37.

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    The problem with the research is, that the method is faulty. Looks good, but basically is senseless.

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    Hello Col
    My copy of Aeroplane Monthly September 1996 is or should be in my attic and I'm not inclined to dig it from there just now but in the update he stated that in this he relied the info in BoBTN Mk V over that in BoverB when they are in conflict. While in general there are not big changes, there are some significant changes, e.g. the following big Accuracy % changes, 145Sqn 114%->68%, 266 Sqn 57%->91%, 616Sqn 46%->68% 603Sqn 86%->67% (but still nr 1). I agree with Franek that the accuracy % info is rather arbitrary but have kept the July 2000 Aeroplane downstears because its info per sqn on claims, losses and days engaged plus the table on LW losses.

    Juha

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    Sounds like the usual statistician's problem. Figures taken to 18 decimal places, and then having to admit to +/- 25%!
    HTH (but it won't!)
    Peter Davies
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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    I am not sure if it shall be in proper English, but statistic is a science of big numbers, thus cannot be used to discuss small ones. In other words, it cannot be used to discuss individual results. Also, results were not broken down for groups, and obviously, overclaim in 11 Group should be significantly higher than in 13 Group due to intensity and number of engagements.

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