commonwealth aircraft corporation...

Commonwealth Aircraft  Logo

The Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation was was formed in 1936 in response to the need for Australia to have an aircraft manufacturing industry of its own. The CAC reduced Australia's dependence on other countries by manufacturing aircraft and engines.

Under licence a licence agreement with North American CAC mass produced 755 NA-16 trainers between 1939 and 1946. The first military production aircraft was the NA33 modified from the original North American version, the aircraft, named the Wirraway, was powered by a Pratt and Whitney Wasp engine. 200 hundred Wirraway aircraft had been delivered to to the RAF by the end of 1940.

In 1939 the government factory also built an improved version of the twin engined Bristol Beaufighter. The Royal Australian Air Force was able to get by with these fairly effective aircraft until modern Allied types arrived. It also became possible to develop some original designs, including the the CA-12 Boomerang, a fighter that or some time was the only combat aircraft available for action against the Japanese.