Airspeed AS.5 Courier

The Airspeed Courier was a wooden low-wing cantilever cabin monoplane.

Multiple power plants were also offered, while the Armstrong Siddeley Lynx engine was promoted for domestic use, the Armstrong Siddeley Cheetah radial engine was also used upon most Couriers.

Owing to its advanced aerodynamics, two Couriers were used as research aircraft, one by the Royal Aircraft Establishment (RAE) and one by Napier’s, who used it for development of the Napier Rapier engine.

The RAE aircraft was modified by Airspeed via the addition of high-lift devices and drag inducers, along with modified controls, for testing purposes.

At the outbreak of the Second World War, the majority of the surviving Couriers were impressed into the Royal Air Force (RAF), where they were typically used for communications purposes.

Only a single Courier survived the conflict, and was briefly used for joyriding flights at ‘Southend on Sea’ prior to being scrapped during December 1947.

Specifications

Crew

1

Capacity

Five passengers

Length

28 ft 6 in (8.69 m)

Wingspan

47 ft 0 in (14.33 m)

Height

8 ft 9 in (2.67 m)

Wing area

250 sq ft (23 m2)

Empty weight

2,344 lb (1,063 kg)

Gross weight

3,900 lb (1,769 kg)

Powerplant

1 × Armstrong Siddeley Lynx IVC air-cooled seven-cylinder radial engine, 240 hp (180 kW)

Performance

Maximum speed

153 mph (246 km/h, 133 kn)

Cruise speed

132 mph (212 km/h, 115 kn)

Range

635 mi (1,022 km, 552 nmi)

Service ceiling

13,500 ft (4,100 m)

Rate of climb

730 ft/min (3.7 m/s).

 

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