It was single engined, low-winged all-metal monoplane initially intended as a pure fighter although its early development saw it eveolve into a strike fighter with huge carrying capacity. Power was to be provided by the new Napier Sabre engine, with an armament of four 20mm cannon. Three Sabre-powered prototypes were then followed by nine Firebrand F. These Sabre powered aircraft featured a slim engine installation to provide the best possible forward view for the pilot when deck landing.
|Published (Last):||11 March 2007|
|PDF File Size:||19.52 Mb|
|ePub File Size:||12.61 Mb|
|Price:||Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]|
Credit: Image from the Public Domain. The high-performance Blackburn Firebrand navy fighter arrived too late to see action in World War 2. The Blackburn Firebrand was a carried-based strike fighter aircraft developed by Blackburn Aircraft of the United Kingdom.
She was a design of G. Petty and went on to live a troubled development before reaching operation status thanks to an engine switch that effectively doomed the Firebrand to mediocrity. Despite the aircraft appearing during the middle years of World War 2 and achieving first flight by February 27th, , the Blackburn Firebrand - in its definitive production form - simply arrived too late in the conflict to ever see combat.
The selected powerplant for the new fighter was to be the impressive Napier Sabre III, a cylinder H-type inline engine. Blackburn responded with its Firebrand proposal and developed the unarmed B prototype. This was followed by the armed F. Mk I prototype that produced 9 working examples. At the same time that the Firebrand was being developed, the Hawker Typhoon was ready to hit the assembly lines and effectively "stole" the available Napier Sabre III engines.
As such, Blackburn was forced to re-engine their design and settle on the Bristol Centaurus VII cylinder radial piston powerplant. This redesign also forced a rethinking in the intended roles of the Firebrand. Along with its fighter duties, the Firebrand was now envisioned to double as a strike platform capable of delivering bombs, rockets and even a torpedo ala the Hawker Typhoon.
The new design was fitted with lengthened wings and appropriate munitions provisions in the form of pylons. The resulting product became the B model - achieving first flight on March 31st, - and entered production as the TF. Mk II. Like the F. Mk I model before it, the TF. Mk II was limited to just 12 production examples.
Mk III model. This "improved" design revealed flaws in low-speed flight thanks to poor rudder control and a tremendous amount of torque output from the new engine. A first flight was achieved on December 21st, and further testing resulted in the deaths of two test pilots along with months of re-evaluation before the Firebrand was even successfully test-landed on a carrier deck.
Despite the successful landing, the aircraft was deemed too dangerous for use as a production aircraft. As such, this particular Firebrand model was dropped from production contention. Model B became the true improved Firebrand as the TF. Mk IV model, first flying on May 17th, Mk IV as well as a revised tail with increased surface areas.
Dive brakes were installed on both the upper and lower wing assemblies for improved control. The TF. Mk IV became the first quantitative and somewhat definitive Firebrand in production with examples produced. At least 40 of these aircraft were later converted to the newer TF. Mk 5 standard. Externally, design of the Firebrand showcased some similarities to the Hawker Tempest with its slim and streamlined fuselage and large propeller spinner. The cockpit was situated at the middle of the fuselage and featured a two-piece bubble-style canopy affording the pilot with relatively excellent all-around vision.
Wings were low-mounted monoplane systems with dihedral and positioned fairly forward along the fuselage sides. The empennage was dominated by a large vertical tail fin with horizontal planes positioned well behind the vertical tail unit. The undercarriage was of a conventional "tail-dragger" arrangement featuring two main landing gears and a single tail wheel.
All three systems were fully retractable. As with most of the British fighters of the time, cannon armament was the standard firepower for the Firebrand. This consisted of 4 x 20mm Hispano Mk II series cannons mounted in pairs on each wing. For a more direct increase to its lethality, the Firebrand could sport a single 1,lb 18" Mark XVII series torpedo running centerline under the fuselage or 2 x 1,lb bombs under the wings - one to a wing pylon.
The definitive TF. Mk IV Firebrand sported the Bristol Centaurus IX series, cylinder, air-cooled, radial piston engine with a listed output of 2, horsepower powering a four-bladed propeller system. Performance specifications included a top speed of miles per hour with a listed cruise speed of miles per hour. Range was equivalent to 1, miles when fitted with drop tanks. A rate-of-climb of 2, feet-per-minute was possible with a service ceiling of approximately 28, feet.
Mk 5 followed the TF. Mk IV into service with subtle aerodynamic related revisions. Production only lasted through 68 examples. The improved TF. Mk 5A finished up the Firebrand line to which total production amounted to examples, lasting from through The FAA squadrons utilizing the type were the , , , , , , , , , , , and the Naval Air Squadrons.
The Blackburn Firebrand was officially operated by the British Royal Navy from through before facing retirement from operational status. Year: Status Retired, Out-of-Service. Crew 1. United Kingdom. Length: Width: Height: Showcased structural dimension values pertain to the Blackburn Firebrand TF. Mk IV production model. Empty Weight: 11, lb 5, kg. Showcased weight values pertain to the Blackburn Firebrand TF. Showcased powerplant information pertains to the Blackburn Firebrand TF.
Credit: Image from the Public Domain. The high-performance Blackburn Firebrand navy fighter arrived too late to see action in World War 2. The Blackburn Firebrand was a carried-based strike fighter aircraft developed by Blackburn Aircraft of the United Kingdom. She was a design of G. Petty and went on to live a troubled development before reaching operation status thanks to an engine switch that effectively doomed the Firebrand to mediocrity. Despite the aircraft appearing during the middle years of World War 2 and achieving first flight by February 27th, , the Blackburn Firebrand - in its definitive production form - simply arrived too late in the conflict to ever see combat.
THE BLACKBURN FIREBRAND.
It was introduced in Update 1. The Firebrand can be considered as a British P With extremely heavy armament as well as a respectable secondary load, the Firebrand is foremost a striker aircraft, then a fighter. Carrying 4 fast-firing and high-capacity Hispano Mk.
History of the Firebrand TF Mk IV
The Blackburn Firebrand was a British naval torpedo strike fighter, originally designed as a naval fighter aircraft. Due to circumstances, it was overtaken by events, and by the time it finally entered service it was no longer relevant - and too late to enter service in World War II. Designed to a tender by the Royal Navy's Admiralty, originally the Fairey Firebrand was intended as a carrier-borne escort fighter, with emphasis on its range over speed. This was due to a prevailing school of thought that carrier fighters' primary task was that of escorting strikes on enemy forces, with the aerial defence of the fleet best left to the ships' own anti-aircraft guns.