De Havilland Australia DHA-G2

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DHA-G2
Role Transport glider
National origin Australia
Manufacturer De Havilland Australia
First flight 1942
Introduction 1942
Retired 1952
Primary user Royal Australian Air Force
Number built 2 DHA-G1
6 DHA-G2

The De Havilland Australia DHA-G2 was a Second World War Australian transport glider based on the earlier prototype DHA-G1.[1] Only two prototype G1 and six production G2 gliders were built.[2]

Design and development[edit]

The G1 glider was designed to meet a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) requirement for a transport glider to specification 5/42.[1] Two prototype gliders, sometimes known as Experimental Glider 1, were ordered from De Havilland Australia (DHA).[1][2] As DHA were already committed to build Tiger Moth basic trainers and Dragon navigation trainers, most of the work was to be done by subcontractors, with much of the build work on the two prototypes being carried out on the fifth floor of a Mill in Camperdown, Sydney.[3] It was a high-wing cantilever monoplane of all wooden construction,making extensive use of plywood. It used the cockpit canopy of the DH.84 Dragon, but was otherwise an original design. The aircraft's undercarriage used a single mainwheel behind a long nose skid, and a wooden tailskid. The crew consisted of a single pilot with seats for six passengers.[4]

The first prototype made its maiden flight on 14 June 1942, and was accepted by the RAAF on 11 October 1942, with the second prototype following on 17 November.[5] A production order was placed with DHA for a modified version, but with the threat of invasion less likely, as well as the availability of Douglas Dakota transports and Waco Hadrian gliders from the United States, only six were ordered.[2][6] The G2 was of similar layout to the G1, but had a slightly larger fuselage and a shorter span wing that could be broken into three parts to aid transportation. The first production G2 flew on 20 March 1943 and was delivered to the RAAF on 6 May 1943, with the remaining 5 following in July that year. They saw little use, with most of the gliders being stored, with the first G2 being used for glider conversion training.[7] The surviving gliders were reduced to components in 1952.[2]

The first G2, serial number A57-1, was modified in 1948 by the Government Aircraft Factory for trials of a suction airfoil, the modifications included the fitting of a 96 hp (72 kW) Mercury 95A engine. Trials continued until 1951.[2][8]

Operators[edit]

 Australia

Specifications (G2)[edit]

Data from [2]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1
  • Capacity: 6
  • Length: 33 ft 0 in (10.06 m)
  • Wingspan: 50 ft 6 in (15.39 m)
  • Height: 7 ft 0 in (2.13 m)
  • Empty weight: 1,450 lb (658 kg)
  • Gross weight: 7,165 lb (3,250 kg) loaded

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 200 mph; 174 kn (322 km/h) while diving
  • Cruising speed: 130 mph; 113 kn (209 km/h) while being towed
  • Stall speed: 48 mph (42 kn; 77 km/h) [5]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Note[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Mrazek 2011, pp. 437-439
  2. ^ a b c d e f "RAAF Museum: RAAF Aircraft Series 2 A57 DHA Glider". Retrieved 7 March 2013. 
  3. ^ Issacs Air International July 1976, p. 23.
  4. ^ Issacs Air International July 1976, pp. 23–24.
  5. ^ a b Issacs Air International July 1976, p. 24.
  6. ^ Issacs Air International July 1976, p.25.
  7. ^ Issacs Air International July 1976, pp.25–26.
  8. ^ Issacs Air International July 1976, pp. 28–30.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Issacs, Keith (July 1976). "Australia's "Wooden Warbirds": The DHA Gliders". Air International 11 (1): pp. 22–30. 
  • Mrazek, James E. (2011). Airborne Combat - The Glider War/Fighting Gliders of WII. Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, United States: Stackpole Books. ISBN 978-0-8117-0808-1.