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SPAD S.XV

France (1919)
Picture of SPAD S.XV Biplane Fighter Prototype
Picture of SPAD S.XV Biplane Fighter Prototype

The SPAD S.XV was evolved from 1917 into 1919 but never managed to leave the prototype stage.


Detailing the development and operational history of the SPAD S.XV Biplane Fighter Prototype.  Entry last updated on 6/4/2018. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com

French aviation pinoeer Louis Bechereau took over what would become the famous French aviation concern of "SPAD" ("Societe Pour l'Aviation et ese Derives") in 1914 and managed the company during the early part of World War 1 (1914-1918). He left the firm in early 1917 to establish "Soviete des Avions Bernard" which would go on to develop a slew of one-off aircraft under the 'Bernard' name. This left Andre Herbemont to carry the torch at SPAD, a company well-known for its successful line of biplane fighters, and his first design of note became the SPAD S.XV.

This biplane fighter was of largely traditional design. The wing mainplanes were of near-equal-span and parallel struts were used for bracing the members, creating a single bay arrangement. The fuselage relied on streamlining to achieve the desired aerodynamics and a well-rounded cowl ring was set over the engine compartment a the nose. The pilot's position (seated in an open-air cockpit) was positioned just ahead of midships while the fuselage tapered to the rear where a low-profile rudder was fitted. Horizontal planes were affixed to the sides of the empennage. The undercarriage was fixed and wheeled at the main leg members. Internally, the frame of the aircraft was of monocoque arrangement and wood and canvas featured heavily into the construction of this fighting aircraft.

Armament was 2 x 7.7mm Vickers machine guns synchronized to fire through the spinning propeller blades.

The first form of the aircraft - S.VI/1 - was outfitted with the Gnome Monosoupape rotary engine developing 160 horsepower and driving a two-bladed propeller (a large spinner was noticeably seated over the propeller hub). This aircraft achieved first-flight on July 31st, 1917.

The work then led to a second prototype in the S.XV/2. This version had a simplified engine fitting (lacking the spinner), extended wing mainplanes and a new tail design. It was evaluated from August 1917 onward but found wanting when matched against contemporaries. Dimensions of this model included a length of 5.35 meters, a height of 2.3 meters and a wingspan of 7.1 meters. Empty weight was 368 kilograms against a MTOW of 625 kg. Maximum speed reached 200 kilometers per hourand mission endurance was 2.5 hours.

The S.XV/3 then arrived with a lengthened fuselage to help work out control/stability issues and this variant flew sometime in January 1918. Still not perfected, the series evolved to include the S.XV/4 which installed the Rhone engine of 170-180 horsepower but appears to have only been worked on into late-April / early-May 1918.

By the time of the S.XV/5's arrival in 1919, the war was over (November 1918) and some additional work was conducted on the aircraft to serve in the air-racing role as there proved little need for a new biplane fighter in the post-war period. The S.XV/5 was developed into a pair of flyable prototypes and these were heavily modified from their wartime forms, carrying Le Rhone engines of 80 horsepower and featuring seating for two. At least one of these went to French Ace Rene Fonck.

Any available statistics for the SPAD S.XV Biplane Fighter Prototype 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: 150mph
Lo: 75mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (124mph).

    Graph average of 112.5 miles-per-hour.
Relative Operational Ranges
NYC
 
  LON
LON
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MOS
MOS
 
  TOK
TOK
 
  SYD
SYD
 
  LAX
LAX
 
  NYC
Graph showcases the SPAD S.XV/2's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era Impact
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
6
6


  * 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  
Supported Mission Types:
Air-to-Air
Interception
Unmanned
Ground Attack
Close-Air Support
Training
Anti-Submarine
Anti-Ship
Airborne Early Warning
MEDEVAC
Electronic Warfare
Maritime/Navy
Aerial Tanker
Utility/Transport
Passenger Industry
VIP Travel
Business Travel
Search/Rescue
Recon/Scouting
Special Forces
X-Plane/Development
National Flag Graphic
National Origin: France
Service Year: 1919
Classification Type: Biplane Fighter Prototype
Manufacturer(s): Societe Pour l'Avions et ses Derives (SPAD) - France
Production Units: 6
Operational Status: Retired, Out-of-Service
Global Operators:
France (cancelled)
Structural - Crew, Dimensions, and Weights:
Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the SPAD S.XV/2 model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.

Operational
CREW


Personnel
1


Dimension
LENGTH


Feet
17.55 ft


Meters
5.35 m


Dimension
WIDTH


Feet
23.29 ft


Meters
7.1 m


Dimension
HEIGHT


Feet
7.55 ft


Meters
2.3 m


Weight
EMPTY


Pounds
816 lb


Kilograms
370 kg


Weight
LOADED


Pounds
1,378 lb


Kilograms
625 kg

Installed Power - Standard Day Performance:
1 x Gnome Monosoupape rotary engine developing 160 horsepower and driving a two-bladed propeller at the nose.

Performance
SPEED


Miles-per-Hour
124 mph


Kilometers-per-Hour
200 kph


Knots
108 kts


Performance
RANGE


Miles
311 mi


Kilometers
500 km


Nautical Miles
270 nm

Armament - Hardpoints (0):

PROPOSED:
2 x 7.7mm Vickers machine guns in fixed, forward-firing mounts at the nose and synchronized to fire through the spinning propeller blades.
Visual Armory:

Graphical image of an aircraft medium machine gun
Variants: Series Model Variants
• S.XV - Base Series Designation
• S.XV/1 - Initial prototype of July 1917; large spinner at propeller hub.
• S.XV/2 - Revised wings and tailplanes; revised engine installation; sans spinner; model of mid-1917.
• S.XV/3 - Lengthened fuselage; model of early-1918.
• S.XV/4 - Fitted with Rhone engine of 170/180 horsepower; abandoned development of 1918.
• S.XV/5 - Pair of modified post-war S.XV for air-racing; two-seater with Le Rhone engines of 80 horsepower.