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C.23 (Coastal Class)

United Kingdom (1917)
Picture of C.23 (Coastal Class) Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Airship

First flying in 1916, C.23 was done in by its own Lewis machine gunner which forced her removal from service in May of 1917.


Detailing the development and operational history of the C.23 (Coastal Class) Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Airship.  Entry last updated on 6/5/2018. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com

C.23 Coastal Class airship served the British Royal Navy during World War 1 (1914-1918). The aircraft was constructed in 1916 and began operational service in 1917, completed with a compound tubular shape. It was defined as a "non-rigid" airship which described it as lacking any rigid understructure to hold the general shape of its envelope (unlike the better known German Zeppelins in use). The design, instead, utilized a high pressure gas within the envelope to fill out the shape. Fins were added to the sides and under the tail design and power derived from a pair of engines - a Sunbeam brand installation of 150 horsepower and a Renault engine of 220 horsepower. One engine was fitted at the front of the suspended gondola and the other found at the rear to provide a complete "puller/pusher" configuration. The piloting/observation/gunnery crew resided at the gondola which featured five open-air cockpits inline. The pilot sat in the central position while a trainable Lewis machine gun position was at the rear-most position. The gondola was a simple fusing of two Avro 504 aircraft fuselage units with the engines installed at each end. The structure also carried 4 x 112lb bombs or 2 x 230lb bombs along its underside to conduct bombing sorties. Naval depth charges could also be substituted. To go along with the rear-set Lewis machine gun placement, there was another dorsal-mounted Lewis machine gun emplacement reachable by rope ladder from the gondola. The gondola was further fitted with landing skids for when not airborne. In all, the C.23 measured a running length of 200 feet.

Airships provided good, cost-effective reconnaissance tools for all sides during The Great War. The aircraft were able to travel great distances and at high altitudes, usually out of the range of early interceptors and ground-based fire. Their tactical value was doubled in that these vehicles could traverse over land or water with equal ease, proving them valuable to both army and naval forces alike. Coastal airships, as their name would suggest, were primarily utilized in the maritime patrol role and, for the Royal Navy, this meant searching, tracking and engagement of German submarines threatening the merchant fleet. Without logistical and material support, the island nation could be starved into submission and removed from the war. As such, the C.23 was used in the anti-submarine role for her time in service.

C.23 managed a relatively short operational existence until May 1st, 1917 when its Lewis machine gunner accidentally struck the envelope which forced the aircraft to collapse. The vessel was officially removed from active service on May 11th, 1917. The Coastal Class numbered 27 in all and many were scrapped during 1919 following the cessation of hostilities. In all, the Royal Navy held in its wartime inventory some 213 airships.

Any available statistics for the C.23 (Coastal Class) Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Airship are showcased in the areas immediately below. Categories include basic specifications covering country-of-origin, operational status, manufacture(s) and total quantitative production. Other qualities showcased are related to structural values (namely dimensions), installed power and standard day performance figures, installed or proposed armament and mission equipment (if any), global users (from A-to-Z) and series model variants (if any).






Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

Image of collection of graph types

Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 50mph
Lo: 25mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (47mph).

    Graph average of 37.5 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
NYC
 
  LON
LON
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MOS
MOS
 
  TOK
TOK
 
  SYD
SYD
 
  LAX
LAX
 
  NYC
Graph showcases the C.23 (Coastal Class)'s operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
1
1


  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


  Compare this entry against other aircraft using our Comparison Tool  
National Flag Graphic
Origin: United Kingdom
Year: 1917
Type: Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Airship
Manufacturer(s): United Kingdom
Production: 1
Status: Retired, Out-of-Service
Global Operators:
United Kingdom
Historical Commitments / Honors:

Military lapel ribbon for Operation Allied Force
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Britain
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Midway
Military lapel ribbon for the Berlin Airlift
Military lapel ribbon for the Chaco War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cuban Missile Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the French-Indochina War
Military lapel ribbon for the Golden Age of Flight
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Iran-Iraq War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1982 Lebanon War
Military lapel ribbon for the Malayan Emergency
Military lapel ribbon for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Six Day War
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Suez Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for Warsaw Pact of the Cold War-era
Military lapel ribbon for the WASP (WW2)
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur
* Ribbons not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns/operations.
Measurements and Weights icon
Structural - Crew, Dimensions, and Weights:
Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the C.23 (Coastal Class) model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.

Operational
CREW


Personnel
6


Dimension
LENGTH


Feet
196.00 ft


Meters
59.74 m

Engine icon
Installed Power - Standard Day Performance:
1 x Sunbeam engine developing 150 horsepower; 1 x Renault engine developing 220 horsepower.

Performance
SPEED


Miles-per-Hour
47 mph


Kilometers-per-Hour
76 kph


Knots
41 kts


Performance
RANGE


Miles
932 mi


Kilometers
1,500 km


Nautical Miles
810 nm

Supported Weapon Systems:

Graphical image of an aircraft medium machine gun
Graphical image of an aircraft conventional drop bomb munition
Armament - Hardpoints (4):

STANDARD:
1 x 7.7mm Lewis machine gun in trainable mounting at rear of suspended gondola.
1 x 7.7mm Lewis machine gun in trainable mounting at dorsal emplacement.

OPTIONAL:
4 x 112lb conventional drop bombs OR 2 x 230lb conventional drop bombs OR naval depth charges.
Variants: Series Model Variants
• C.23 - Base Series Designation