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Supermarine 508 / 529

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Responding to Admiralty interest in "undercarriage-less" aircraft suitable for operation from flexible decks on aircraft carriers, Supermarine designed the Type 505 single-seat fighter in 1945. Two Rolls-Royce AJ65 (later to be named Avon) turbojets were located side-by-side in a broad centre fuselage to provide a stable base for alighting on the "carpet" and a Vee configuration kept the tail surfaces clear of the jet efflux. An armament of twin 20mm cannon was planned and provision was made to provide for a fixed tricycle undercarriage for flight development and operation from shore bases. It was thus relatively simple to incorporate a retractable undercarriage in the design when Admiralty interest in the flexible deck concept waned in late 1947 and the fighter was modified as the more conventional Type 508.

Three aircraft were ordered to Specification N.9/47 for a naval fighter, and, configurationally similar to the Type 505 apart from the undercarriage, the first of these flew on 31 August 1951. The second (as the essentially similar Type 529) followed a year later, on 29 August 1952.

In February 1950, the contract covering the third prototype was amended to introduce sweptback wings, and this, as the Type 525, became, in effect, the prototype of the Scimitar. The Types 508 and 529 were each powered by a pair of 2948kg Avon RA3 engines and had provision for an armament of four 20mm cannon.

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Type 529
Engines: 2948kg Avon RA3
Empty weight: 8373 kg / 18459 lb
Wingspan: 12.50 m / 41 ft 0 in
Length: 15.24 m / 50 ft 0 in
Height: 3.54 m / 12 ft 7 in
Wing area: 31.59 sq.m / 340.03 sq ft
Max. speed: 977 km/h / 607 mph

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Supermarine 508 / 529


 

 


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