×
Aircraft / Aviation Vehicles & Artillery Infantry Arms Warships & Submarines Military Pay Scale Military Ranks
HOME
AIRCRAFT / AVIATION
MODERN AIR FORCES
COUNTRIES
MANUFACTURERS
COMPARE
BY CONFLICT
BY TYPE
BY DECADE
WORLD WAR 2
X-PLANE

Gloster E.28/39


Single-Seat, Single-Engine Experimental Prototype Aircraft (1941)


Aviation / Aerospace

1 / 1
Image from the Public Domain.

Jump-to: Specifications

The Gloster E.28-39 experimental aircraft became the first aircraft to fly under jet power for the nation of Britain.



Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 09/11/2017 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com; the following text is exclusive to this site.
Even before the Gloster Meteor, Britain's first operational jet-powered combat fighter, arrived on the scene in World War 2 (1939-1945) to stake its claim and advance a career that led into the early-Cold War years, the nation needed proof-of concept and test beds to prove the viability of jets and high-speed flight in general. This fell to certain designs of which one, perhaps being the most notable of them all, became the classic Gloster "E.28./39". This single-seat, single-engine product was arranged by the Gloster Aircraft Company through the efforts of the Royal Aircraft Establishment (RAE) and engineer George Carter along with the Whittle turbojet engine's creator himself, Frank Whittle. The result was a pair of flying data-collecting platforms that served to shape the future of jet-powered flight for Britain and prove the nation as a leader in the field of jet propulsion.

The E.28/39, known mainly by its Air Ministry Specification of E.28/39, was also recognized under the names of Gloster G.40, the "Gloster Whittle" and the Gloster "Pioneer". The aircraft became Britain's first aircraft to fly under jet power but followed the German Heinkel He 178 and Italian Caproni-Campini N.1 (both detailed elsewhere on this site) into the air when it joined them in aviation history during its maiden flight in May of 1941.

Work on the design began in August of 1939, a month before the official start of World War 2. Studies then followed that included wind tunnel testing and this work resulted in a very modern-looking aircraft featuring a nose-mounted intake, single-finned tail unit, low-set monoplane wings (straight) and retractable tricycle undercarriage. The sole pilot sat just aft of the nose section and ahead of the mainplanes. The mainplanes were situated ahead of midships. The engine, buried within the aft-section of the fuselage, exhausted through a circular port at the rear, just under and aft of the tail fin.
Dimensions included a length of 25.3 feet, a wingspan of 29 feet and a height of 8.9 feet. Empty weight was 2,885lb against an MTOW of 3,750lb.

Fitted with a Power Jets (the company founded by Whittle) W1X turbojet, taxiing trials were had in April of 1941 and the aircraft went airborne for a short "hop" that month. Under tight security, the official first-flight was then recorded on May 15th, 1941 and proved the design, and its engine, wholly sound. In January of 1942, the airframe received the newer, more powerful Power Jets W1A which promised an output of 1,050lb and, in time, the aircraft was able to consistently reach speeds of 365 miles per hour. The second prototype carried the Rolls-Royce W2B turbojet (1,350lb thrust output) and this example was first-flown on March 1st, 1943 and managed speeds nearing 435 miles per hour.

For June of 1943, an even more powerful turbojet design outputting 1,520lb thrust was fitted and flown with success though, with the increase in performance, engineers had to overcome various speed-related obstacles inherent in high-speed flying so revisions to the airframe were made as needed; both pilots and engineers were to learn the nuances of high-speed flying as this advanced propulsion program evolved.

Before the end, the E.28/39 aircraft managed to record a top speed of 505 miles per hour and reach altitudes beyond 30,000 feet with seemingly relative ease. Testing continued into 1944 by which point the design had more or less completed its project goals and laid the framework for more advanced forms to follow. The first prototype ended its days as a museum piece at the Science Museum of London in 1946. The second prototype was lost during testing due to an aileron failure in flight.

While the E.28/39 was, at one point, seen as a true combat warplane end-product (pending the outcome of its test phase), it was never fitted with the proposed 4 x 7.7mm Browning machine gun battery originally envisioned.

Specifications



Service Year
1941

Origin
United Kingdom national flag graphic
United Kingdom

Crew
1

Production
2
UNITS


Gloster Aircraft Company - UK
National flag of the United Kingdom United Kingdom
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
X-Plane (Developmental, Prototype, Technology Demonstrator)
Aircraft developed for the role of prototyping, technology demonstration, or research / data collection.


Length
25.4 ft
(7.75 m)
Width/Span
29.0 ft
(8.85 m)
Height
8.9 ft
(2.70 m)
Empty Wgt
2,888 lb
(1,310 kg)
MTOW
3,748 lb
(1,700 kg)
Wgt Diff
+860 lb
(+390 kg)
(Showcased structural values pertain to the base Gloster E.28/39 production variant)
Installed: 1 x Power Jets W.1 turbojet engine developing 860 lb of thrust.
Max Speed
339 mph
(545 kph | 294 kts)
Ceiling
32,005 ft
(9,755 m | 6 mi)
Range
407 mi
(655 km | 1,213 nm)
Rate-of-Climb
1,065 ft/min
(325 m/min)


♦ MACH Regime (Sonic)
Sub
Trans
Super
Hyper
HiHyper
ReEntry
RANGES (MPH) Subsonic: <614mph | Transonic: 614-921 | Supersonic: 921-3836 | Hypersonic: 3836-7673 | Hi-Hypersonic: 7673-19180 | Reentry: >19030


(Showcased performance specifications pertain to the base Gloster E.28/39 production variant. Compare this aircraft entry against any other in our database. View aircraft by powerplant type)
None though there were plans, at one point, to install 4 x 7.7mm Browning machine guns.


Supported Types


Graphical image of an aircraft medium machine gun


(Not all ordnance types may be represented in the showcase above)
Hardpoint Mountings: 0


E.28/39 - Base Series Designation; two flyable prototypes completed; second lost in crash.


Military lapel ribbon for Operation Allied Force
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Britain
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Midway
Military lapel ribbon for the Berlin Airlift
Military lapel ribbon for the Chaco War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cuban Missile Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for pioneering aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the French-Indochina War
Military lapel ribbon for the Golden Age of Flight
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Iran-Iraq War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1982 Lebanon War
Military lapel ribbon for the Malayan Emergency
Military lapel ribbon representing modern aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Six Day War
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Suez Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for Warsaw Pact of the Cold War-era
Military lapel ribbon for the WASP (WW2)
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur War
Military lapel ribbon for experimental x-plane aircraft


Ribbon graphics not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective aerial campaigns / operations / aviation periods.

Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Cookies


2021 Military Pay Scale Army Ranks Navy Ranks Air Force Ranks Alphabet Code DoD Dictionary American War Deaths French Military Victories Vietnam War Casualties

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 GlobalFirepower, a data-driven property used in ranking the top military powers of the world, WDMMA.org, the World Directory of Modern Military Aircraft, and SR71blackbird.org, detailing the history of the world's most iconic spyplane.


Facebook Logo YouTube Logo

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