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Piaggio PD-808


Under an agreement signed in 1961, Piaggio and Douglas Aircraft developed the PD-808 for military and commercial use. Originally designed by the Douglas Aircraft Company of Long Beach, California, as a business jet. No orders were received, and the com-plete project was bought by Piaggio, which flew the first prototype in 29 August 1965. The PD-808 was powered by Bristol Siddeley Viper turbojets mounted on the sides of the rear fuselage. Piaggio also failed to secure any worthwhile commercial interest, but a few examples were taken by the Italian air force. Only 27 examples of this type, with low-set wings and aft-mounted turbojet engines, were produced, and 25 of these went to the Italian air force. The first aircraft were configured for the utility role (navaid calibration, navigation training for three pupils, and light transport of up to eight passengers or an equivalent freight load), but the last six aircraft were com-pleted as electronic warfare platforms with cabin accommodation for specialist Elint (electronic intelligence) equipment and its three operators.


Power increased in 1966 to 3,300 lbs. s.t. The PD-808 differed from the original model by having larger tip tanks, a longer dorsal fin, and a forward-sliding nose fairing. By 1972, the aircraft was available in several versions: a five-seat executive version, a seven-seat executive transport, a six-seat version for the Italian Air Force, and one powered by 3,500-lb. s.t. AiResearch turbofans. Other PD-808s are powered by twin 3,360-lb. s.t. turbojets drawing from two integrated tanks of 511 gallons total capacity and wingtip tanks with 473 gallons total capacity.

Four versions were produced for the Italian Air Force as the PD-808 VIP six-seater for government and military VIP transport duties; PD-808 TA nine-seat transport and navigation trainer; PD-808 ECM electronic-countermeasures version; and the PD-808 RM radio-calibration version that is equipped for medium- and high-altitude calibration of navigation aids.

Engines: two Rolls-Royce Bristol Viper Mk 526 turbojets, 3,368-lb. s.t / 1524kg
Wingspan: 13.2 m / 43 ft 4 in
Length: 12.85 m / 42 ft 2 in
Height: 4.8 m / 16 ft 9 in
Wing area: 20.9 sq.m / 224.97 sq ft
Max take-off weight: 8165 kg / 18001 lb
Empty weight: 4830 kg / 10648 lb
Max. speed: 850 km/h / 528 mph
Cruise 497 mph
Stall 104 mph
Service ceiling: 13700 m / 44950 ft
Range w/max.fuel: 2100 km / 1305 miles
Initial climb rate: 5,400 fpm
Takeoff distance (35'): 3,180 ft
Landing distance (50'): 2,990 ft
Seats: 5-9

Five-seat electronic warfare plane
Engines: two 3,360-lb (1,524-kg) thrust Piaggio -built Rolls-Royce (Bristol Siddeley) Viper Mk 526 turbojets
Maximum speed 529 mph (851 kph) at 19,685 ft (6,000 m)
Initial climb rate 5,415 ft (1,650 m) per minute
Service ceiling 44,950 ft (13,700 m)
Range 1,322 miles (2,128 km)
Empty weight 10,648 lb (4,830 kg)
Maximum take-off weight 18,001 lb (8,165 kg)
Wing span 43 ft 3.75 in (13.20 m)
Length 42 ft 2in (12.85 m)
Height l5ft 9in (4.80m)
Wing area 224.97 sq ft (20.90 sq.m)
Armament: none



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