Albatros B.II

The Albatros B.II, (company designation L.2) was an unarmed German two-seat reconnaissance biplane of the First World War.

Designed by Robert Thelen based on his 1913 Albatros B.I, the B.II was the aircraft that brought this aircraft manufacturer to the world’s attention.

The B.II had a shorter wingspan than the B.I and used a variety of engines up to 89 kW (120 hp).

In 1914 it set an altitude record of 4,500 m (14,800 ft).

The seating arrangement was not ideal, the pilot occupied the rear cockpit, the observer sat in front over the wings which greatly reduced his downward view while the protruding engine block almost completely obscured the view over the nose.

When Albatros developed the armed C.I based on their B-series, the seat positions were swapped so that the observer/gunner had a better view and clear field of fire.

A floatplane variant of the B.II was developed, known as the W.1 or B.II-W, as was a purpose-built trainer with increased wingspan and different engines, designated the B.IIa.

Variants

B.II

Developed from the B.I, the B.II entered production in 1914.

B.IIa

Strengthened airframe, particularly the tail section and 120 hp (89 kW) Mercedes D.II or 120 hp (89 kW) Argus As III engines with radiators moved to the leading edge of the upper centre section.

B.II (Ph) series 23

Production of the B.I in Vienna by Phönix Flugzeug-Werke AG.

B.II (Ph) Series 24

Production of the B.I built in Vienna.

W.1

Seaplane with twin floats and a 150 hp (112 kW) Benz Bz.III engine.

Thulin C / SK-1 / Ö2

Licence built version by AB Thulinverken Sweden.

Specifications

Crew

Two

Length

7.63 m (25 ft 0.38 in)

Wingspan

12.8 m (42 ft 0 in)

Height

3.15 m (10 ft 4 in)

Wing area

40.12 m2 (431.8 sq ft)

Empty weight

723 kg (1,594 lb)

Gross weight

1,071 kg (2,361 lb)

Powerplant

1 × Mercedes D.II , 89.5 kW (120 hp)

Performance

Maximum speed

120 km/h (75 mph, 65 kn)

Endurance

4 hours

Service ceiling

3,000 m (9,840 ft)

Rate of climb

1.6 m/s (320 ft/min).

 

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