Airco DH.10 Amiens

The DH.10 was designed by Geoffrey de Havilland to meet the requirements of Air Board Specification A.2.b for a single or twin engine day bomber.

It was a development of the earlier Airco DH.3 bomber, which had flown in 1916, but had been rejected by the War Office because of a belief that strategic bombing would be ineffective and that twin engines were impracticable.

The first prototype flew on 4 March 1918, powered by two 230 hp (186 kW) Siddeley Puma engines mounted as pushers.

When evaluated by the RAF, the performance of this prototype was well below expectation, reaching only 90 mph (145 km/h) at 15,000 ft (4,572 m) with the required bomb load, compared with the specified 110 miles per hour (180 km/h).

Owing to this poor performance, the DH.10 was redesigned with more powerful engines in a tractor installation.

The second prototype, known as the Amiens Mark II was powered by two 360 hp (268 kW) Rolls-Royce Eagle VIII engines and first flew in April 1918, showing greatly superior performance and proving to be faster than the DH.9A while carrying twice the bomb load.

While shortages of the Eagle meant that the Amiens Mark II could not be put into production, it proved the design of the definitive aircraft, the Amiens Mark III, which was powered by the more readily available 395 hp (295 kW) Liberty 12 from America, as was the DH.9A.

Following successful evaluation, large orders were placed, with a total of 1,291 ordered.

Specifications

Crew

3

Length

39 ft 7 7⁄16 in (12.076 m)

Wingspan

65 ft 6 in (19.96 m)

Height

14 ft 6 in (4.42 m)

Wing area

837.4 sq ft (77.80 m2)

Empty weight

5,750 lb (2,608 kg)

Gross weight

8,500 lb (3,856 kg)

Max take-off weight

9,060 lb (4,110 kg)

Powerplant

2 × Liberty 12 water-cooled V-12 engines, 400 hp (300 kW) each

Performance

Maximum speed

131 mph (211 km/h, 114 kn) at sea level

124 mph (200 km/h; 108 kn) at 10,000 ft (3,000 m)

Endurance

6 hr

Service ceiling

19,000 ft (5,800 m)

Time to altitude

11 min to 10,000 ft (3,000 m)

Armament

Guns

1 or 2 × .303 in (7.7 mm) Lewis guns on Scarff rings at both nose and amidships gunners cockpits

Bombs

Up to 920 lb (420 kg) bombs carried internally.

 

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