Sydney Camm and his team responded to Specification
F.18/37 which called for a single-seat interceptor, with
two tenders. One was referred to as the "R-type" and
the other as the "N-type". These were to use fundamentally
similar airframes and differ essentially in the
type of engine installed. The former, which was to be
named Tornado, initially appeared the most promising
and was powered by a 24-cylinder X-type Rolls-Royce
Vulture - basically two 12-cylinder Peregrine V engines
driving a common crankshaft. The first of two prototypes
was flown on 6 October 1939 with a 1760hp Vulture
II, provision being made for an armament of 12 7.7mm machine guns. The similarly-powered
second prototype, flown on 5 December 1940,
had provision for a four 20mm cannon armament. A
Tornado assembly line was laid down by Avro, the production
model being intended to receive the Vulture V
of 1980hp, with which both prototypes were reengined.
The Vulture, meanwhile, was suffering
various problems, such as connecting rod bolt failures,
and as the Merlin possessed absolute priority, Rolls-
Royce .was forced to abandon the production of this
X-type engine. This led to cancellation of the initial production
batch of 201 Tornados, only one production
example being completed and flown on 29 August 1941.
Approval was also given for completion of a third Tornado
prototype with a 2210hp Bristol Centaurus CE.4S
18-cylinder air-cooled radial engine, this flying on 23
| Take-off weight||4839 kg||10668 lb|
| Empty weight||3800 kg||8378 lb|
| Wingspan||12.77 m||42 ft 11 in|
| Length||10.00 m||33 ft 10 in|
| Height||4.47 m||15 ft 8 in|
| Wing area||26.29 m2||282.98 sq ft|
| Max. speed||640 km/h||398 mph|
|A three-view drawing (1288 x 1146)|
Fighter prototype that was hampered by an unsatisfactory engine, the R-R "Vulture". The same engine ruined the Avro Manchester bomber. The Manchester became a success when its' Vulture engines were replaced by Merlins and, in a similar fashion, this fighter became a success after its' Vulture engine was replaced by a Napier Saber, and it became the Hawker "Typhoon".
what about range?
I wish I could get my hands on one of these engines ?
Do you have any comments about this aircraft ?