Messerschmitt P.1101 / Bell X-5

The Bell X-5 was the first aircraft capable of changing the sweep of its wings in flight.

It was inspired by the untested wartime P.1101 design of the German Messerschmitt Company.

In contrast with the German design, which could only have its wing sweepback angle adjusted on the ground, the Bell engineers devised a system of electric motors to adjust the sweep in flight.

Specifications

X-5

Crew

1

Length

33 ft 4 in (10.16 m)

Wingspan

30 ft 6 in (9.30 m)

Lower wingspan

20 ft 9 in (6.32 m) swept at 60° sweep

Height

12 ft 0 in (3.66 m)

Wing area

175 sq ft (16.3 m2)

Airfoil

Root

NACA 64A011

Tip

NACA 64A08

Empty weight

6,350 lb (2,880 kg)

Gross weight

9,875 lb (4,479 kg)

Powerplant

1 × Allison J35-A-17A turbojet engine, 4,900 lbf (22 kN) thrust at sea level

Performance

Maximum speed

705 mph (1,135 km/h, 613 kn)

Range

750 mi (1,210 km, 650 nmi)

Service ceiling

42,000 ft (13,000 m)

Thrust/weight

0.5.

Messerschmitt P.1101

Crew

1

Length

9.18 m (30 ft 1 in)

Wingspan

8.25 m (27 ft 1 in)

Height

3.71 m (12 ft 2 in)

Wing area

15.9 m2 (171 sq ft)

Aspect ratio

4.29

Airfoil

Root

NACA 00011.41-1.1-40

Tip

NACA 00009-1.1-40

Empty weight

2,594 kg (5,719 lb)

Gross weight

4,065 kg (8,962 lb)

Max take-off weight

4,500 kg (9,921 lb)

Fuel capacity

1,250 kg (2,756 lb) / 1,432 l (378 US gal; 315 imp gal)

Powerplant

1 × Heinkel HeS 011A turbojet engine, 12.01 kN (2,700 lbf) thrust

Performance

Maximum speed

980 km/h (610 mph, 530 kn) at 7,000 m (22,966 ft) (estimated)

Maximum speed

Mach 0.8

Cruise speed

905 km/h (562 mph, 489 kn)

Landing speed

172 km/h (107 mph; 93 kn) (with ⅓ fuel aboard)

Range

1,500 km (930 mi, 810 nmi)

Service ceiling

14,000 m (46,000 ft)

Rate of climb

22.2 m/s (4,370 ft/min) at sea level

Time to altitude

10,000 m (32,808 ft) in 9 minutes 30 seconds

Wing loading

296.5 kg/m2 (60.7 lb/sq ft) maximum

Take-off run

709 m (775 yd)

Landing run

572 m (625 yd)

Armament

Guns

4 × 30mm MK 108 cannons on production aircraft

Missiles

4 × Ruhrstahl X-4 air-to-air missiles on production aircraft.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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