Folland Fo.108

The Fo.108 was Folland’s response to Air Ministry Specification 43/37 for an engine testbed.

It was Folland’s first design to be accepted by the Air Ministry for production.

The Fo.108 was a large low-wing cantilever monoplane with a conventional cantilever tailplane and a fixed tailwheel landing gear.

It had a glazed cockpit for the pilot, and a cabin for two observers behind and below the pilot, fitted out so that they could make detailed measurements of engine performance during flight.

To enable the aircraft to be delivered from the Hamble factory and later ferried to new assignments, they were normally fitted with a Bristol Hercules radial engine.

In service, the Fo.108 was fitted with a number of other engines including the inline Napier Sabre (four), Bristol Centaurus radial, and Rolls-Royce Griffon V-engine.

Entering service in 1940, the type was operated by the Bristol Aeroplane Company, Napier and Rolls-Royce, Five of the twelve production aircraft were lost in crashes.

The last examples of the Fo.108 were withdrawn from service in 1946, by de Havilland’s engine division.

12 aircraft were built.

Specifications

Centaurus

Crew

1

Capacity

2 observers

Length

43 ft 4 in (13.21 m)

Wingspan

58 ft (18 m)

Height

16 ft 3 in (4.95 m)

Wing area

588 sq ft (54.6 m2)

Gross weight

16,000 lb (7,257 kg)

Powerplant

1 × Bristol Centaurus 18-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine

Propellers

4-bladed constant-speed propeller

Performance

Maximum speed

292 mph (470 km/h, 254 kn)

Cruise speed

267 mph (430 km/h, 232 kn).

 

 

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