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  • Albatros D.Va Biplane Fighter Aircraft


    The Albatros D.Va was a variant on the D.V series of German aircraft.

     Updated: 4/19/2017; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ¬©www.MilitaryFactory.com


    The Albatros D.I of 1916 proved instrumental in bringing air superiority back into the favor of the German Empire during World War 1 thanks to her stellar rate-of-climb, aerodynamically refined design and lethal pairing of synchronized machine guns. However, as technology drove events throughout the war, the aircraft lived a relatively short operational tenure before being outclassed by the latest offerings from the Triple Entente. The D.II was unveiled a short time later that year as a slightly improved model with a better rate-of-climb, a lowered upper wing assembly for improved pilot visibility out-of-the-cockpit and generally retained much of the original's successful design. The D.III followed in late 1916 but was something of a departure from the preceding forms in its use of "Vee" struts to join the upper and lower wing assemblies (earning it the nickname of "V-Strutter" from the British). This revision went on to see severe structural issues, particularly during high stress moves such as diving, for the remaining life of the series to the point that her pilots became very critical of the type. Attempts were made to rectify this deficiency by strengthening wing spars but a true solution was never formalized. By this point in the war, the D.III was noted as less maneuverable compared to her newer contemporaries - a lethal draw in an aerial dogfight where positioning was everything.

    To fulfill a new German requirement for an "improved D.III", Albatros delivered its D.V model (the sequential "D.IV" designation was used on a cancelled Albatros fighter development) which became a lighter version of their D.III with a slightly lowered upper wing among other refinements. However, the structural issue remained and maneuverability was not improved to the point that even fabled German ace, Manfred von Richthofen, penciled a scathing review of the mount - citing it as even inferior to the D.III which it was to replace. Regardless, German authorities were desperate for fighters and ordered 900 of the type.


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    Albatros D.Va Technical Specifications


    Service Year: 1917
    Type: Biplane Fighter Aircraft
    National Origin: Imperial Germany
    Manufacturer(s): Albatros Werke GmbH - Germany
    Production Total: 1,662



    Structural (Crew Space, Dimensions and Weights)


    Operating Crew: 1
    Length: 24.61 feet (7.5 meters)
    Width: 29.69 feet (9.05 meters)
    Height: 8.86 feet (2.70 meters)

    Weight (Empty): 1,510 lb (685 kg)
    Weight (MTOW): 2,059 lb (934 kg)

    Installed Power and Standard Day Performance


    Engine(s): 1 x Mercedes Illa 6-cylinder in-line engine developing 180 horsepower.

    Maximum Speed: 116 mph (186 kph; 100 knots)
    Maximum Range: 232 miles (373 km)
    Service Ceiling: 18,698 feet (5,699 meters; 3.54 miles)
    Rate-of-Climb: 907 feet-per-minute (276 m/min)

    Armament / Mission Payload


    STANDARD:
    2 x 7.92mm Spandau LMG 08/15 fixed, forward-firing synchronized machine guns.

    Global Operators / Customers


    Imperial Germany; Poland

    Model Variants (Including Prototypes)


    D.I - Base D-series

    D.II - Lowered top wing; Fundamental and minor aerodynamic changes.

    D.III - V-shaped struts introduced

    D.V - Streamlined fuselage

    D.Va - Slightly modified D.V model