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Hansa-Brandenburg C.I (Type LDD)

Austria-Hungary (1916)
Picture of Hansa-Brandenburg C.I (Type LDD) Reconnaissance Biplane Fighter

The Hansa-Brandenburg C.I series was designed by Ernst Heinkel and produced in over 1,300 forms.


Detailing the development and operational history of the Hansa-Brandenburg C.I (Type LDD) Reconnaissance Biplane Fighter.  Entry last updated on 7/1/2016. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com

The Hansa-Brandenburg C.I was a two-seat reconnaissance aircraft seeing action with the Austro-Hungarian Empire in World War 1. The C.I was another aircraft design by German engineer Ernst Heinkel who had also produced the preceding Hansa-Brandenburg B.I unarmed reconnaissance aircraft of 1914. Heinkel's work on the B.I no doubt played a role in the newer C.I which itself borrowed some of the previous design's style and construction technique. The C.I was enlisted for action from 1916 through to the end of the war, charged with aerial reconnoitering sorties, artillery spotting, photographic reconnaissance and some strike sorties using a modest supply of light-weight drop ordnance - in essence a sort of "multi-role" performer for its day.

The Hansa-Brandenburg featured two equal-span double-bay wings with parallel struts in a staggered biplane arrangement. The whole of the fuselage took on a box-type shape complete with flat side fabric-over-wood covering while sporting a smooth, curved forward underside. The engine was fitted to the extreme forward of the fuselage just ahead of the crew position. Instead of separate cockpits common to other aircraft of the time, the C.I made use of a connected, open-air compartment for her crew of two sitting back-to-back with the pilot ahead, just behind a windscreen, and the observer/gunner in a simplistic ringed "cage" to his rear. The pilot and upper wing positions were situated as such that the pilot could see over and above the top wing structure for improved vision. Armament was one or two 8mm Schwarzlose machine guns while a light bombload of up to 220lbs was possible. In earlier C.Is, only the observer was supplied a machine gun, this being in the rear cockpit. Other versions employed a second machine gun in the upper wing assembly for the pilot. Still other variations dropped the upper machine gun in favor of a synchronized system fitted along the portside of the fuselage. The undercarriage was conventional for the time, featuring a pair of main landing gear wheels on fixed struts and a simple tail skid under the empennage. The fuselage tapered into the empennage which sported a single vertical tail fin and braced horizontal planes. Power was supplied from a single Austro-Daimler water-cooled inline engine delivering 160 horsepower to a two-blade propeller (all this depending on the production model). Maximum speed was reported at 78 miles per hour with a service ceiling of 19,000 feet. The C.I featured a listed endurance time of about 3 hours. In all, the Hansa-Brandenburg proved a sound design and somewhat pleasing to look at.

Hansa-Brandenburg handled primary production of the C.I (84 produced under HB) while additional license-production was undertaken by both Phonix (Phonix Flugzeugwerke) and Ufag (Ungarische Flugzeugfabrik) in a variety of series batches that differed mainly in engine type and engine horsepower output. Phonix C.Is were produced in five major series and fitted Austro-Daimler and Hieros engines varying from 160 to 230 horsepower. Likewise, Ufag produced the C.I in six series batches using Austro-Daimler, Hieros, Mercedes and Benz engines ranging from 160 to 230 horsepower. Some 1,318 total C.Is were eventually produced.

The C.I saw action with the Austro-Hungarian Imperial and Royal Aviation Troops and proved a stable mount leading up to a lengthy career, quite the accomplishment for any aircraft featured in World War 1. Like other aircraft designs of the war, the C.I was progressively improved and had her career extended as a frontline implement by the arrival of newer engines wielding evermore power.

Along with the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Poland and Czechoslovakia also utilized the C.I, though this occurred in the post-war years to follow. Aero undertook production of the C.I in the ensuing inter-war years for Czechoslovakia under three major designations as the A-14, A-15 and the A-26 fitting a BMW IIIa powerplant of 185 horsepower produced under-license by Walter Aircraft Engines. Walter was a firm formed in 1911, beginning industrial production on motorcycles and (later) cars.

The Hansa-Brandenburg C.I may also be known as the Type LDD in some publications.

Any available statistics for the Hansa-Brandenburg C.I (Type LDD) Reconnaissance Biplane Fighter 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: 100mph
Lo: 50mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (87mph).

    Graph average of 75 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 Hansa-Brandenburg C.I'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
1318
1318


  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

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


Altitude Visualization
Small airplane graphic
  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: Austria-Hungary
Service Year: 1916
Classification Type: Reconnaissance Biplane Fighter
Manufacturer(s): Hansa-Brandenburg - Germany / Phonix Flugzeug-Werke AG; Ungarische Flugzeugfabrik AG - Austria
Production Units: 1,318
Global Operators:
Austria-Hungary; Poland; Czechoslovakia
Structural - Crew, Dimensions, and Weights:
Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Hansa-Brandenburg C.I model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.

Operational
CREW


Personnel
2


Dimension
LENGTH


Feet
27.72 ft


Meters
8.45 m


Dimension
WIDTH


Feet
40.19 ft


Meters
12.25 m


Dimension
HEIGHT


Feet
10.89 ft


Meters
3.32 m


Weight
LOADED


Pounds
2,888 lb


Kilograms
1,310 kg

Installed Power - Standard Day Performance:
1 x Austro-Daimler 6-cylinder liquid-cooled engine developing 160 horsepower.

Performance
SPEED


Miles-per-Hour
87 mph


Kilometers-per-Hour
140 kph


Knots
76 kts


Performance
RANGE


Miles
104 mi


Kilometers
167 km


Nautical Miles
90 nm


Performance
CEILING


Feet
19,029 ft


Meters
5,800 m


Miles
3.60 mi

Armament - Hardpoints (2):

STANDARD (EARLY):
1 x 8mm Schwarlose machine gun in rear cockpit

STANDARD (EARLY):
1 x 8mm Schwarlose forward-firing machine gun in upper wing assembly.
1 x 8mm Schwarlose machine gun in rear cockpit

STANDARD (LATE):
1 x 8mm Schwarlose synchronized forward-firing machine gun in portside fuselage emplacement.
1 x 8mm Schwarlose machine gun in rear cockpit

OPTIONAL:
Up to 132lbs of external ordnance.
Visual Armory:

Graphical image of an aircraft medium machine gun
Variants: Series Model Variants
• C.I - Base Production Model Designation; various engine fittings including 160hp, 185hp, 210hp Austro-Daimler, 200hp Hieros, 230hp Hieros, 160hp Mercedes D.III, 220hp Benz Bz.IVas; production by Phonix and Ufag firms in multiple series batches.
• A-14 - Czechoslovakian-produced C.I by Aero (post-war).
• A-15 - Czechoslovakian-produced C.I by Aero (post-war).
• A-26 - Czechoslovakian-produced C.I by Aero (post-war).