During the air war of World War 1 (1914-1918), Euler-Werke of the German Empire was one of several concerns given the task of designing a "fighting scout" in the image of the excellent French-made Nieuport 11 "Bebe" biplane fighter to serve German purposes in the conflict. The Bebe first appeared in January of 1916 and proved hugely instrumental in ending the reign of the German Fokkers - the period of dominance known as the "Fokker Scourge" which spanned from August of 1915 until early-1916.
The same biplane-winged, single-seat, single-engine configuration was adopted to produce the Euler D.I. V-shaped struts were used to brace the upper and lower wing members and an Oberursel U.O. 7-cylinder rotary engine of 80 horsepower output was selected to drive the two-bladed wooden propeller unit situated at the nose. The pilot sat aft of the engine installation and under/aft the upper wing member in the usual way. A portion of the wing member was cut away to aid viewing the action above the aircraft. The tail utilized a small-area rudder with low-set horizontal planes and the aircraft accomplished ground-running through a traditional tail-dragger arrangement.
As in the Nieuport 11, the D.I carried a single 7.92mm machine gun installed over the engine and synchronized to fire through the spinning propeller blades.
The aircraft could managed a maximum speed of 87 miles-per-hour and reached an altitude of 2,000 meters in just over 12 minutes.
A first-flight in prototype form of the D.I was recorded in the Fall of 1916. That October, German authorities, satisfied with the progress on the D.I, placed an order for some fifty aircraft even before the D.I had been truly tested. A pair of prototypes served as fighter trainers before the end of the year but the aircraft did not undertake the formal requisite trials until January of 1917. Another fifty aircraft were added to the existing order but these were finished to the D.II standard form detailed elsewhere on this site.
The Euler D.I held little impact, if any, on the war.
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