×
Home Aircraft / Aviation Naval Warfare Land Systems Small Arms
HOME
AVIATION
MODERN AIR FORCES
COUNTRIES
MANUFACTURERS
COMPARE
BY CONFLICT
BY TYPE
BY DECADE
WORLD WAR 1

Hannover CL.III


Twin-Seat Biplane Fighter Aircraft


The Hannover CL.III was a direct evolution of the earlier CL.II and saw production figures exceed 600 units in all.
Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 7/31/2019
Even as the CL.II (detailed elsewhere on this site) by Hannoversche Waggonfabrik AG was making its way to German squadrons during World War 1 (1914-1918), the company was already evolving the design under the designation of "CL.III". The engine-of-choice switched from the original's Argus As.III of 180 horsepower to the proven Mercedes D.III water-cooled engine of 160 horsepower - the change promising greater performance power at altitude. Several measures were also enacted to reduce the type's operating weight and various sections were reinforced or revised. The resulting biplane fighter saw total production reach 617 units with the German Empire and some post-war use was had by the nations of Latvia and the newly-founded Soviet Union.

The aircraft carried over other established qualities of the CL.II that came before it: the unequal-span biplane wing members (single bay, parallel struts), tail-dragger undercarriage, and tandem seating for its crew of two (pilot in front, gunner/observer at the rear). Armament was increased from two 7.92mm machine guns (one forward, one aft) to three machine guns: 2 x 7.92mm machine guns now featured at the rear cockpit emplacement.

Dimensions included a running length of 24.9 feet, a wingspan of 38.4 feet, and a height of 9 feet. Empty weight reached 1,580 lb against an MTOW of 2,400 lb.

The CL.III was approved on February 23rd, 1918 and a serial production order for 200 units then followed by the German Air Service with first-deliveries tagged for March of that year. However, there proved a shortage of the in-demand Mercedes D.III engines which resulted in just eighty of the aircraft featuring entering service with this powerplant - the remainder were equipped with the original Argus As.III of 180 horsepower and these became the "CL.IIIa" in service. The engines were license-built by Opel and designated "As.III(O)" to mark the origin.

With this engine in place, the aircraft could manage a maximum speed of 103 miles-per-hour, reach an altitude of 24,600 feet, and climb at 620 feet-per-minute while holding a mission endurance of three hours.

The CL.IIIa proved itself the definitive production mark of the series, seeing combat service from entry in April 1918 up until the end of the war in November of 1918 (the 'Armistice') - though by this point the capable fighters were being used in the ground-attack role to help delay Allied advances. At least one other designation emerged as the "CL.IIIb" and this was to feature the NAG C.III engine of 185 horsepower. For this work, a single experimental model, the "CL.IIIc", was to serve as a testbed while also sporting a two-bay biplane wing arrangement.

Despite the signing of the Armistice of 1918 to end the war in full, Hannover continued serial production of the aircraft for a short time later, adding another 100 CL.III and another 38 CL.IIIa forms.






Specifications



Year:
1917
Status
Retired, Out-of-Service
Crew
2
[ 617 Units ] :
Hannoversche Waggonfabrik / Opel - German Empire
National flag of German Empire National flag of Latvia National flag of Soviet Union German Empire; Latvia (post-war); Soviet Union (post-war)
- Fighter
- Close-Air Support (CAS)
- Reconnaissance (RECCE)
Length:
24.87 ft (7.58 m)
Width/Span:
38.39 ft (11.7 m)
Height:
9.19 ft (2.8 m)
(Showcased structural dimension values pertain to the Hannover CL.IIIa production model)
Empty Weight:
1,576 lb (715 kg)
MTOW:
2,381 lb (1,080 kg)
(Diff: +805lb)
(Showcased weight values pertain to the Hannover CL.IIIa production model)
1 x Argus As.III 6-cylinder water-cooled inline piston engine developing 180 horsepower and driving a two-bladed wooden propeller at the nose.
(Showcased powerplant information pertains to the Hannover CL.IIIa production model)
Maximum Speed:
103 mph (165 kph; 89 kts)
Service Ceiling:
24,606 feet (7,500 m; 4.66 miles)
Maximum Range:
311 miles (500 km; 270 nm)
Rate-of-Climb:
620 ft/min (189 m/min)
(Showcased performance values pertain to the Hannover CL.IIIa production model; Compare this aircraft entry against any other in our database)
1 x 7.92mm Spandau LMG 08/15 machine gun in fixed, forward-facing mounting.
2 x 7.92mm Parabellum MG14 machine guns in trainable mounting at rear cockpit.
(Showcased armament details pertain to the Hannover CL.IIIa production model)
CL.III - Base Series Designation; powered by Mercedes D.III engine; 80 examples completed.
CL.IIIa - Powered by Argus A.III inline piston engine of 180 horsepower; production by Opel.
CL.IIIb - Proposed production form to be powered by NAG C.III engine of 185 horsepower.
CL.IIIC - Testbed form with revised wing mainplanes with twin bays and NAG engine.

Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Cookies


The "Military Factory" name and MilitaryFactory.com logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT gmail.com.

Part of a network of sites that includes AnvilOfWar.com, GlobalFirepower, a data-driven property used in ranking the top military powers of the world, and WDMMA.org, the World Directory of Modern Military Aircraft.


www.MilitaryFactory.com • All Rights Reserved • Content ©2003-