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The Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2 was a British single-engine tractor two-seat biplane which was in service with the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) from 1912 until the end of World War I. About 3,500 were built. Initially used as front-line reconnaissance aircraft and light bombers, variants of the type were also used as night fighters. Like many warplanes since, the B.E.2 was retained in front line service after it had become obsolete, for want of a suitable replacement. After its belated withdrawal it finally served as a trainer, communications aircraft and on anti-submarine coastal patrol duties.