Gloster Trent Meteor
The Gloster Meteor was an important development platform for many jet related technologies including early engine design, this is highlighted by the fact that the eight Meteor F9/40's were powered by no less than four entirely different engine designs with only two powered by the same engine (The W2/B 23's of DG205 & DG208).
In many ways the Meteor contributed more at the end of their service life which is seen for the first time with F Mk I Meteor EE227.
Rolls-Royce began to develop the experimental Trent in May 1944, using as the basis of the engine the centrifugal-flow Derwent turbojet which was to power the F.3 and later marks of the Meteor.
EE227 was originally issued to 616 squadron but after just 80 hours was retired from service in favour of the improved Meteor F. Mk III. Initially sent to RAE Farnborough it soon moved to Rolls Royce at Hucknell in March 1945 where its Derwent Turbojets were exchanged for a pair of Rolls Royce RB50 turboprops.
Fitted with 7ft 11 inch Rotol propellors and reduction gear the combination produced 750 shp and 1,000 lbs of jet pipe thrust. Other modifications included a six inch undercarriage extension for better propellor clearance and ballast in place of its cannons. It first flew from Church Broughton on the 20th September 1945 with Eric Greenwood at the controls.
Initial trials showed that the aircraft was directionally unstable which was improved by the addition of small fins on the horizontal stabilizer fitted in May 1946. Later the propellors were reduced in size to 4ft 10.5 inches which had the effect of reducing shaft horsepower to 350 although jet thrust increased to 1,400 lbs. In April 1948 the aircraft spent time at Boscombe Down in simulated deck-landing trials. In total it accumulated 47 hours of flight time in a successful program which would lead to the Rolls Royce Dart turboprop. After having its engines removed in October 1948 it ended its days as a standard F Mk I in fire destruction tests at Farnborough.
Engines: 2 x Rolls-Royce R.B.50 Trent turboprops, 1305kW
Wingspan: 13.12 m / 43 ft 1 in
Length: 12.57 m / 41 ft 3 in
Height: 3.96 m / 12 ft 12 in
Wing area: 34.75 sq.m / 374.05 sq ft