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Blackburn B.48 Firecrest / YA.1

 

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The Blackburn B.48, designed to specification S.28/43 as a potential successor to the Firebrand, and unofficially known as the Firecrest, was flown for the first time on April 1, 1947, although design work on this aircraft was actually initiated in October 1943. Three prototypes were built, the third of these (VF172) featuring power-operated ailerons and a reduction in dihedral angle (from nine to three degrees) on the outboard wing panels. Power was provided by a Bristol Centaurus 59 eighteen-cylinder radial rated at 1,825 hp. (with water/methanol injection) for take-off, and although no armament was actually installed, provision was made for two wing-mounted 0.5in. (12.7-mm) machine guns, and a torpedo and two 500lb. (227-kg) bombs plus rocket projectiles could be carried beneath the fuselage and wings.

 

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No production of the B.48 was undertaken, although before all development was abandoned versions were projected with the Bristol Proteus, the Armstrong Siddeley Python, and Rolls-Royce Clyde turboprops.

 

031B48Firecrest

 

Engine: Bristol Centaurus 59, 1,825 hp
Wing span: 44ft 11.5in (13.7 m)
Length: 39 ft 3.5 in (12 m)
Height: 14 ft 6 in (4.42 m)
Wing area: 361.5 sq.ft (33.6 sq.m).
Empty wt: 10,513 lb (4773 kg)
Loaded weight with a 1,850-1b. (839-kg) torpedo: 15,183 lb (6 887 kg)
Max speeds: 323 mph (521 kph) at sea level
Max speed: 345 mph (556 kph) at 5,000 ft (1524 m)
Max speed: 382 mph (615 kph) at 19,000 ft (5791 m).
Cruising speed: 299 mph (482 kph) at 20,000 ft (6096 m)
Max range internal fuel: 518 mls (834km)
Max range three 100 Imp.G (455 lt) drop tanks: 1,440 mls (2 317 km)
Initial climb rate: 2,100 fpm (10.7 m/sec).

 

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