Aero Ae-45

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Ae 45
CIAF 2015 Aero 145 3.jpg
Let Aero Ae 145
Role Utility aircraft
Manufacturer Aero Vodochody, Let Kunovice
First flight 21 July 1947
Primary users Czechoslovakia
China, East Germany, France, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, USSR and Switzerland[1]
Produced 19471961
Number built 590[2]

The Aero 45 was a twin-piston engined civil utility aircraft produced in Czechoslovakia after World War II. Aero Vodochody produced the aircraft in 1947–1951, after which the Let Kunovice rolled out these planes until 1961. In 1958 the Ae-45S became the first Czechoslovak plane to cross the Atlantic Ocean.[3] It was the first product of the nation's postwar aviation industry and proved a great success, with many of the 590 produced being exported.

Design and development[edit]

Preserved Aero 45 in Prague Airport, Terminal 1

Development began 1946 and was accomplished by the technical designers Jiři Bouzek, Ondřej Němec and František Vik. The design bears a superficial resemblance, viewed nose-on, to the German Siebel Si 204 which, among other German aircraft like the Messerschmitt Bf 109, were produced in Czechoslovakia while under German occupation. The prototype (registered OK-BCA) flew for the first time on 21 July 1947 and the second, registered OK-CDA, one year later. Flight testing ran without incidents and the type was released for series production in 1948. The model number of "45" was not a continuation of Aero's pre-war numeration scheme, but a reference to the 4/5 seats in the aircraft.

Description[edit]

The Aero 45 had a sleek, teardrop-shaped fuselage, with a rounded, extensively-glazed nose affording excellent visibility. It had a low wing on which the engine nacelles were mounted, and a conventional tail. The main undercarriage was retractable but the tailwheel was fixed.

Operational history[edit]

Ae-45 prototypes were widely advertised abroad. In August 1949 Jan Anderle won the Norton Griffiths Race in Great Britain (Ae-45 registration OK-DCL). They also set several international records. As a result, apart from Eastern Bloc countries, the plane was also bought by Italy and Switzerland. On 10–11 August 1958 Dr. Pier Paolo Brielli flew an Italian Ae-45 3000 kilometers from South America to Dakar across the southern Atlantic (as the first Czechoslovak-built aircraft). In 1981 Jon Svensen flew Ae-45S from Europe to the USA.[2]

This type was used in Czechoslovakia and was exported to the People's Republic of China, East Germany, France, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, Soviet Union and Switzerland. Hungary was a major customer, where the aircraft was known as the Kócsag (Hungarian: "Egret").

Variants[edit]

1957-built Aero 45S series II registered in Malaya
Let Aero Ae 145
Aero 45
First production version built in Aero factory. 200 built between 1948 and 1951.
Aero 45S "Super Aero"
Improved variant produced by Let in Kunovice factory, among others with better navigational equipment. 228 aircraft built between 1954 and 1959.
Aero 145
Version with engines changed to supercharged Motorlet (Walter) M332, produced later as Avia M332s. This version was developed and built by Let, 162 aircraft built between 1959 and 1961.
Aero 245
Experimental version, not produced.
Aero 345
Experimental version, not produced.
Sungari-1
Chinese unlicensed copy of the Aero Ae 45S, produced from 1958.[2]

Operators[edit]

Aero Ae 145 used in Poland as an air ambulance in Polish Aviation Museum
1948 Lufthansa LET Aero 45

Civil operators[edit]

 Czechoslovakia
 East Germany
 Hungary
  • Hungarian Police
  • Hungarian Air Ambulance Service
 Italy
 Malaya
 Poland
 Romania
 Soviet Union
  Switzerland
 Slovenia
 Vietnam
  • Vietnam Civil Aviation Department – later as Vietnam Civil Aviation (now Vietnam Airlines) [6]

Military operators[edit]

 People's Republic of China
 Czechoslovakia
  • Czechoslovak Air Force operated aircraft under designation K-75, for liaison purpose.
  • Czechoslovakian National Security Guard

 East Germany

 Hungary
 India
 Romania
 Vietnam

Specifications (Aero 145)[edit]

Data from Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1961–62[7]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1
  • Capacity: 3-4 pax
  • Length: 7.77 m (25 ft 6 in)
  • Wingspan: 12.25 m (40 ft 2 in)
  • Height: 2.3 m (7 ft 7 in)
  • Wing area: 17.1 m2 (184 sq ft)
  • Airfoil: Aero No.58-64
  • Empty weight: 960 kg (2,116 lb)
  • Gross weight: 1,500 kg (3,307 lb)
  • Max takeoff weight: 1,600 kg (3,527 lb) (full fuel)
  • Fuel capacity: 324 l (86 US gal; 71 imp gal)
  • Powerplant: 2 × Avia M 332-III 4-cylinder air-cooled inverted in-line piston engines, 100 kW (140 hp) each
  • Propellers: 2-bladed Type V410, 1.9 m (6 ft 3 in) diameter electrically-operated metal 4-position variable-pitch propellers

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 282 km/h (175 mph, 152 kn) at 1,600 kg (3,500 lb) AUW
  • Cruise speed: 250 km/h (160 mph, 130 kn) at 1,600 kg (3,500 lb) AUW
  • Range: 1,700 km (1,100 mi, 920 nmi)
  • Service ceiling: 5,900 m (19,400 ft)
  • Service ceiling one engine out: 2,200 kg (4,900 lb)
  • Rate of climb: 5 m/s (980 ft/min)
  • Wing loading: 87.8 kg/m2 (18.0 lb/sq ft)
  • Power/mass: 9.5 kg/kW (15.7 lb/hp)
  • Take-off run to 15 m (49 ft): 460 m (1,510 ft)

See also[edit]

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Aero Ae-45: První československé aerotaxi". FlyMag.cz.
  2. ^ a b c Vaclav Nemecek, Atlas letadel. Dvoumotorova obchodni letadla, Praha 1987
  3. ^ "Legendární české aerotaxi vznikalo tajně. Místo letadel měli dělat hrnce". iDNES.cz (in Czech). 16 October 2013.
  4. ^ Hardy, M. J. Air Taxi, Sir? article in Aircraft Annual 1964 UK Ian Allan 1963 p.61 bw plate
  5. ^ Adam Jońca: Samoloty linii lotniczych 1945–1956, WKiŁ, Warsaw 1985, ISBN 83-206-0529-6
  6. ^ Our Background vietnamairlines.com
  7. ^ Taylor 1961, pp. 37–38.

Further reading[edit]

  • Taylor, John W.R., ed. (1961). Jane's all the World's Aircraft 1961–62. London: Sampson Low, Marston & Co.
  • Němeček, Václav (1987). Atlas letadel. Dvoumotorova obchodni letadla (in Czech). Praha.

External links[edit]