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SIPA 200 Minijet


In 1949 Yves Gardan created the SIPA 200 Minijet, a single jet-engine light two-seater capable of 250 mph (400 kph) maximum level speed with 358 lb (160 kg) static thrust. It was distinctive in its twin-boom configuration and short, tubby nacelle housing the engine and cockpit.

The SIPA 200 was built at the request of the French government, which was evaluating new aviation concepts as part of the progressive build-up of France's postwar aircraft industry.

Although its extreme height is given as 6ft, the wings are at waist level, the cabin roof very little higher, and the underside of the fuselage just a few inches clear of the ground. The second prototype fins and rudders are very slightly modified; the original Y control-column was replaced by two separate sticks, and a full blind-flying panel was now installed, and five-point seat harness. All instruments are on a vertical panel, and flap, undercarriage, fuel and trim controls and indicators are on a console down the centre of the cockpit, between the two pilots. 

The monoplane cantilever wing has a laminar profile. The undercarriage is of tricycle. It has been designed and manufactured by ERAM. The main gear retracts completely into the body. The front landing gear remains slightly out, providing protection to the cockpit in case of landing gear retracted. There is a retractable rear stand that protects when landing.
Kerosene fuel is held in 2 x 60 lt tanks in each wing, and one central reservoir of 120 lt in the fuselage. A total capacity of about 240 lt.

To climb in, one ducks under the open roof panel and then wriggles down and back into the seat. Once in, there is just enough room for elbows and plenty for the legs. The view is reasonable over the instrument panel, good to the sides and poor everywhere behind the three to nine o'clock sectors.


To started up; select petrol on, oil on, pressed the starter for two seconds, then further pressed the igniter button and at 10,000 revs released these two buttons, switched to kerosine, and opened the throttle. Taxi is about 25,000 revs, using toe-operated hydraulic brakes for steering. The noise is distinctive but neither loud nor penetrating.

Takeoff uses 15 deg of flap and 35,000 revs against the brakes and the take-off is about 400 yd. By the time the undercarriage is pumped up, the speed has gone from 70 to 100 kt and climb is between 200 and 300 m/min (990 ft/min).

The S.200 made its first flight on 14 January 1952 at the hands of Roger Launay. Early test flights revealed that it was underpowered and performance fell short of expectations, and it was unable to compete with contemporary types such as the Fouga Magister.

The second prototype Minijet, unlike the first prototype, is fully aerobatic at its take-off weight of 1,675 lb.

The flaps are double slotted but so arranged that, when retracted, both slots are shrouded by the wing under-skin. The approach is about 80 kt. The flap selector was left "down" and one full stroke of the pump lowered 5 deg of flap to some 30 deg. More than this is available but is never required.


It stalls at about 50 kt, cruises at 150 kt at 1,500 ft at 31,500 r.p.m., and climbs at almost 1,500 ft/min. Although there is nothing "hot" about it, it does behave like a jet aircraft.

Besides the two prototypes, a pre-production batch of five has been ordered by the French Government Secretariat for Light and Sporting Aviation. Furthermore, NATO training authorities have shown interest in the Minijet as a possible basic trainer. Seven prototypes were built. All except one (No.5) were assigned to the Training Service Aviation and based in Saint Yan.

Prototype N ° 1
Engine: Turbomeca Palas I, 150kg / 330 lb thrust.
Wingspan: 7.20 m / 24 ft 7 in
Length: 5.12 m / 17 ft 10 in
Height: 1.78 m / 6 ft 10 in
Wing area: 7.90 m²
Empty weight: 488 kg
Max weigh: 824 kg
Wing loading: 85 kg / m²
Max speed: 185 kt / 400 km/h / 249 mph
Cruise: 195 kt
Stall speed: 55 kt
Ceiling: 8000 m / 26250 ft
Range: 500 km / 311 miles
Seats: 2
Prototypes N ° 2 of 7
Engine: Turbomeca Palas I, 160kg
Wingspan: 8.00 m
Length: 5.12 m
Height: 1.75 m
Wing area: 9.62 m²
Empty weight: 488 kg
Max weight: 825 kg
Max speed: 240 kt
Stall speed: 70 kt






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