Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The Vickers Wellesley was a 1930s light bomber built by Vickers for the Royal Air Force. While it was obsolete by the start of World War II, and unsuited to the European air war, the Wellesley prospered in the desert theatres of East Africa, Egypt and the Middle East from 1940 to 1942.
The Wellesley utilised a radical geodetic construction that was derived from the airship structural developments of Barnes Wallis. Vickers originally used the technique to build a biplane to meet Air Ministry Specification G.4/31 but the result was a failure. Modifying it to make the monoplane Wellesley resulted in a successful aircraft capable of long range and high altitude flight. The RAF ordered a total of 176 Wellesleys.
Three aircraft were modified to become a long-range variant. These had a crew of three and were fitted with extra fuel tanks. On November 5, 1938 two of them flew non-stop for two days from Egypt to Darwin Australia (7,162 miles, 11,525 km).
While the Wellesley was not a significant combat aircraft, the design principles that were tested in its construction were put to good use with the Wellington heavy bomber that became on of the main types of RAF Bomber Command in the early years of the European war.
- Crew: two
- Length: 39 ft 3 in (11.96 m)
- Wingspan: 74 ft 7 in (22.73 m)
- Height: 12 ft 4 in (3.75 m)
- Wing area: 630 ft² (58.5 m²)
- Empty: 6,369 lb (2,889 kg)
- Loaded: 11,000 lb (5,035 kg)
- Maximum takeoff: 12,500 lb (5,670 kg)
- Powerplant: 1x Bristol Pegasus XX radial, 925 hp (690 kW)
- Maximum speed: 228 mph (369 km/h)
- Range: 1,110 miles (1,786 km)
- Service ceiling: 33,000 ft (10,060 m)
- Rate of climb: 1,200 ft/min (366 m/min)
- Wing loading: 18 lb/ft² (86 kg/m²)
- Power/Mass: 0.08 hp/lb (0.14 kW/kg)
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details