The Gloster Javelin was the first twin-engine delta-wing jet fighter design to take up service with any one air force. The system would also become the United Kingdoms first all-weather day or night fighter and the very final production design of the fabled World War Two powerhouse company Gloster.
The Javelin was a twin-seat turbojet fighter designed to fulfill the role of all-weather interception for the Royal Air Force. The system was produced as far back as 1948 but not fielded till 1956. In between that time, three prototype and pre-production aircraft were lost in maneuvers that prompted a complete redesign of the aircraft. By designs end, the system would be fielded with an all-delta wing surface structure fitted to two Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire turbojet engines with a dominant tailplane section consisting of a high-mounted elevator assembly with rudder.
At the time of production, the Javelin was one of the most technologically advanced aircraft of the day. The ability for the system to be able to see and attack in any weather, day or night, was quite an advantage when fielded against lesser foes. Armed with a conservative array of 2 x 20mm cannons, the system would have to wait until the FAW.Mk 7 in 1958 to see the implementation of air-to-air infra-red homing missiles, completing the transformation of the post-world war design to a more contemporary fighter. Variants later, the Javelin system would be fielded with an inflight refueling probe and drop tanks that would impressively increase the overall combat radius of the aircraft.
As it stood, the Javelin maintained a successful service record, being fielded by as many as 14 squadrons in the Royal Air Force alone. The system would see production until 1967, by which time the Javelin would be replaced by more modern turbojet and turbofan fighters - ultimately closing the book on one of the most successful aviation companies in history.
Production 436 Units
Gloster - UK
56.27 ft (17.15 m)
52.00 ft (15.85 m)
16.01 ft (4.88 m)
24,000 lb (10,886 kg)
31,579 lb (14,324 kg)
(Showcased weight values pertain to the Gloster Javelin FAW.Mk 1 production model)
2 x Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire ASSa.6 turbojet engines developing 8,000 lb of thrust each.
709 mph (1,141 kph; 616 kts)
52,493 feet (16,000 m; 9.94 miles)
951 miles (1,530 km; 826 nm)
5,405 ft/min (1,647 m/min)
(Showcased performance values pertain to the Gloster Javelin FAW.Mk 1 production model; Compare this aircraft entry against any other in our database)
2 x 30mm cannons
Later models upgraded with missile support:
4 x Firestreak air-to-air infra-red homing missles (in place of the 2 x 30mm cannon assembly).
(Showcased armament details pertain to the Gloster Javelin FAW.Mk 1 production model)
FAW.Mk 1 - Initial Production Model Designation; 427 produced.
FAW.Mk 2 - Uprated 8,300lb thrust powerplants; improved Westinghouse radar system.
T.3 - Dual-Control Trainer Variant; sans radar; 2 x 30mm cannons.
FAW.Mk 4 - Improved handling characteristics; all-moving tailplane feature.
FAW.Mk 5 - increased internal fuel capacity; modified wing assemblies.
FAW.Mk 6 - Based on Mk 5 but fitted with an American-produced radar system.
FAW.Mk 7 - 142 produced; fitted with Sapphire 203 11,000 thrust powerplants; provision for 4 x Firestreak air-to-air missiles in place of 2 x 30mm cannons.
FAW.Mk 8 - Afterburning powerplants for 13,390lbs of total thrust.
FAW.Mk 9 - Final Production Model Variant; based on existing FAW.Mk 7 and FAW.Mk 8 models but brought up to new standard; fitted with inflight refueling probe for increased range.
* Ribbons not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns/operations.
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