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WORLD WAR 1

SPAD S.XIII


Single-Seat, Single-Engine Biplane Fighter Aircraft (1917)


Aviation / Aerospace

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Jump-to: Specifications

The SPAD S.XIII proved an excellent development of the successful SPAD S.VII design.



Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 04/29/2019 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.
The SPAD S.XIII (S.13) was a further development of the successful SPAD S.VII (S.7) design, the latter eventually becoming outclassed by the newer and better German aircraft designs of World War 1. The S.XIII would prove a success for SPAD (Societe Pour l'Aviation et ses Derives), adding yet another fine fighter aircraft to its resume and a formidable platform to the conflict. The S.XIII featured an increased wingspan, more powerful engines and dual machine gun systems along with more subtle changes in design over the S.VII. In the end, over 8,400 examples would roll off the assembly lines.

Configuration of the S.XIII was similar in most respects to the S.VII before it. The pilot, wings, landing gear and engine were all mounted to the forward end of the fuselage. Construction was of an internal wood structure with a fabric covering along with light alloy used near the engine area. The biplane wings were of equal span, with the lower component aligned directly with the upper. The pilot sat to the rear of the upper wing assembly in an open-air cockpit with a forward view overlooking the twin 7.7mm Vickers machine guns - these synchronized to fire through the spinning propeller via an interrupter gear. The S.XIII achieved first flight on April 4th, 1917 and was in operational service along the frontlines by May of that year.

In combat, the S.XIII proved its worth (and pedigree for that matter). The aircraft was able to out-fly the German D.VII types well enough and compared favorably to even the fabled Sopwith Camel. Structurally, the S.XIII was sound enough to withstand a good deal of punishment before inevitably giving in. This structural integrity generally made diving a supreme tactic for S.XIII users. If the design sported any major flaw it was in its reduced maneuverability at slower speeds - this alone led to dangers in both combat and in bringing the aircraft in for a landing.

Nevertheless, the S.XIII proved a popular mount for allied aces including American Eddie Rickenbacker and Frenchmen Rene Fonck and Georges Guynemer (Guynemer personally making a case for an improved S.VII, eventually leading to the development of the S.XIII). The type served with air forces across the globe even in the post-war years.

Like the S.VII before it, the S.XIII was designed by Louis Bechereau.

Specifications



Service Year
1917

Origin
France national flag graphic
France

Status
RETIRED
Not in Service.
Crew
1

Production
8,472
UNITS


Societe Pour l'Avions et ses Derives (SPAD) - France
National flag of Argentina National flag of Belgium National flag of Brazil National flag of Czechia National flag of France National flag of Greece National flag of Italy National flag of the Kingdom of Italy National flag of modern Japan National flag of Poland National flag of Russia National flag of Spain National flag of Thailand National flag of Turkey National flag of the United Kingdom National flag of the United States National flag of Uruguay Argentina; Belgium; Brazil; Czechoslovakia; France; Greece; Kingdom of Italy; Imperial Japan; Imperial Russia; Poland; Siam (Thailand); Spain; Turkey; Uruguay; United Kingdom; United States
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Air-to-Air Combat, Fighter
General ability to actively engage other aircraft of similar form and function, typically through guns, missiles, and/or aerial rockets.


Length
20.3 ft
(6.19 m)
Width/Span
26.2 ft
(8.00 m)
Height
6.9 ft
(2.10 m)
Empty Wgt
1,243 lb
(564 kg)
MTOW
1,806 lb
(819 kg)
Wgt Diff
+562 lb
(+255 kg)
(Showcased structural values pertain to the base SPAD S.XIII production variant)
Installed: 1 x Hispano-Suiza 8BEc water-cooled inline engine developing 235 horsepower and driving a two-bladed propeller at the nose.
Max Speed
138 mph
(222 kph | 120 kts)
Ceiling
21,818 ft
(6,650 m | 4 mi)
Rate-of-Climb
1,312 ft/min
(400 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 SPAD S.XIII production variant. Compare this aircraft entry against any other in our database. View aircraft by powerplant type)
STANDARD:
2 x 7.7mm Vickers machine guns in fixed, forward-firing mountings synchronized to fire through the spinning propeller blades.


Supported Types


Graphical image of an aircraft medium machine gun


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


A.2
S.VII - Fitted with either Hispano-Suiza 150hp 8Aa or the 180hp 8Ac powerplants; 6,000 produced.
S.XI
S.XII - Fitted with Hispano-Suiza HS 8Bc (200hp) / HS 8Bec (220hp) engines; 300 examples produced.
S.XIII - Increased wingpan; improved powerplant; 2 x 7.7 machine guns; 8,500 produced.


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