Morane-Borel monoplane

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Morane-Borel monoplane
Emile Taddéoli monoplane.jpg
Emile Taddéoli in ~1911/13
Role Sports plane
Manufacturer Morane brothers and Gabriel Borel
Designer Raymond Saulnier
First flight 1911

The Morane-Borel monoplane (sometimes referred to with the retronym Morane-Saulnier Type A or simply the Morane monoplane) was an early French single-engine, single-seat aircraft. It was flown in several European air races.


The Monoplane was a mid-wing tractor configuration monoplane powered by a 50 hp Gnome Omega seven-cylinder rotary engine driving a two-bladed Chauvière Intégrale propeller. The fuselage was a rectangular-section wire-braced box girder, with the forward part covered in plywood and the rear part fabric covered: the rear section was left uncovered in some examples. The two-spar wings had elliptical ends and were braced by a pyramidal cabane in front of the pilot and an inverted V-strut underneath the fuselage, behind the undercarriage. Lateral control was effected by wing warping and the empennage consisted of a fixed horizontal stabiliser with tip-mounted full-chord elevators at either end and an aerodynamically balanced rudder, with no fixed vertical surface. In later examples the horizontal surfaces were modified, and consisted of a fixed surfacee with balanced elevators hinged to the trailing edge.[1] The undercarriage consisted of a pair of short skids, each carried on a pair of struts, and a pair of wheels on a cross-axle bound to the skids by bungee cords, and a tailskid.

A two-seat version was later produced, with the fuselage lengthened to 7.0 m (23 ft) and wingspan increased to 10 m (34 ft).[1]

Operational history[edit]

The Monoplane achieved fame when Jules Védrines flew one to victory in the 1911 Paris-to-Madrid air race, the only competitor to finish the four-day course. Later in the year he came second in the Circuit of Britain, flying an aircraft powered by a 70 hp Gnome.[2] Another was flown by André Frey in the Paris-Rome race in 1911, finishing third.[3] Emile Taddéoli was another owner of a Morane monoplane.

A two-seat version, powered by an 80 Gnome was entered for the 1912 British Military Aeroplane Competition.[1]

Surviving examples[edit]

In 2007, a single example remains extant, undergoing conservation work at the Canada Aviation Museum


 United Kingdom


From: [1] l'Aérophile, 15 April 1911, p. 170

General characteristics

  • Crew: one
  • Length: 6.50 m (21 ft 6 in)
  • Wingspan: 9.50 m (31 ft 1 in)
  • Wing area: 14 m2 (151 ft2)
  • Empty weight: 200 kg (441 lb)
  • Gross weight: 430 kg (948 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Gnome Omega 7-cylinder air-cooled rotary piston engine, 37 kW (50 hp)


  • Maximum speed: 111 km/h (69 mph)


  1. ^ a b c The Borel MonoplaneFlight 20 July 1912 p. 651
  2. ^ Daily Mail Circuit of Britain Flight 29 July 1911, p.661
  3. ^ Villard, Henry Serrano (1987). Blue Ribbon of the Air. Washington D.C.: Smithsonian Institution. p. 158. ISBN 0 874 74 942 5. 
  • Taylor, Michael J. H. (1989). Jane's Encyclopedia of Aviation. London: Studio Editions. p. 193. 

External links[edit]