Aviatik D.VI Single-Seat Biplane Fighter Prototype
The Aviatik D.VI appeared for the German Empire in the last year of World War 1 but engine issues forced the prototype to miss official military competitions.
Entry last updated on 4/23/2017; Authored by Staff Writer; Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com
Service Year: 1918
Type: Single-Seat Biplane Fighter Prototype
National Origin: Imperial Germany
Manufacturer(s): Automobil und Aviatik AG (Aviatik) - German Empire
Total Units Built: 1
Aviatik of the German Empire built a solid resume for itself after being established in 1909 in Mulhausen (as Automobil und Aviatik AG). In time, the concern became a well-recognized German aircraft-maker whose designs helped to stock the German Air Service during World War 1. Designs ranged from various reconnaissance and fighter types to experimental and development-minded models. During the war's final year (1918), the company was hard at work on several prototype fighter projects that included the D.VI.
The D.VI was outfitted with the Benz Bz.IIIbm model series engine of 195 horsepower and was, by and large, an evolutionary offshoot of earlier Aviatik fighter types. The aircraft went airborne for the first time in August of 1918. Its overall construction was of wood with fabric covering. The engine was fitted at front in the usual way and the single-seat, open-air cockpit was situated aft and under the upper wing assembly. The wing members were joined by parallel struts. The undercarriage was fixed in flight and wheeled at only the two main legs. Proposed armament was consistent with other fighters of the war - 2 x 7.92mm LMG 08/15 machine guns synchronized to fire through the spinning propeller blades.
As flown, the D.IV had an estimated maximum speed of 117 miles per hour and could reach 16,405 feet in under 18 minutes. The design was known to have very good flight characteristics.
However, all this was moot for the Benz engine provided trouble for the development team which, in turn, nixed the aircraft's involvement in the second D-type fighter program of June 1918. Before long, the D.IV was abandoned by Aviatik in favor of the D.VII - though only one prototype of this biplane was built as well.