Short Satellite

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Satellite
Short Satellite.JPG
Role two-seat monoplane
Manufacturer Short Brothers
First flight 1924
Introduction 1924
Retired 1926
Primary user Short Brothers
Number built 1

The Short S.4 Satellite was a small British two-seater sporting monoplane, produced in 1924 to take part in the Air Ministry's Two-Seater Light Aeroplane competition on 27 September of that year.

Design[edit]

Design began in July, with only weeks available before the competition, so the monocoque fuselage was of conventional design, with wooden box spars; the ribs however were of duralumin, as were the tailplane, elevators, fin and rudder. The cantilever wings had a span of 34 ft (10.3 m) and they, the tail and the fuselage were fabric-covered. The Satellite was fitted initially with an ungeared Bristol Cherub engine, with which it had a top speed of 70 mph (110 km/h) without a passenger.

History[edit]

The aircraft was initially fitted with an ungeared Bristol Cherub engine at the Air Ministry's Two-Seater Light Aeroplane competition at Lympne in 1924, where the Satellite was flown by the company's chief test pilot J. Lankester Parker.[1] The engine delivered insufficient power to fly with a passenger, so the Satellite, along with nine of the other 18 entrants, failed to meet the competition's success criteria. It was fitted with a tuned version of the Cherub within the week and on 4 October took part in the Grosvenor Cup race, completing the course and finishing in seventh place. It was later fitted with a geared Cherub II, later still with an ABC Motors Scorpion Mk. II engine, both of which greatly improved its performance. As a result of violent wing flutter experienced at 90 mph (140 km/h), the wingspan was reduced by 2 ft (0.61 m); this solved the problem and no flutter was experienced even at dives of up to 120 mph.[2]

The Satellite was sometimes irreverently referred to as "Parker's Tin Kettle" because he frequently flew the aircraft.[3]

Specifications[edit]

Short Satellite 3-view drawing from NACA-TM-289

Data from [4]

General characteristics

  • Crew: one
  • Capacity: one
  • Length: 23 ft 9 in (7.24 m)
  • Wingspan: 33 ft 10 in (10.3 m)
  • Wing area: 168 sq ft (15.6 m2)
  • Empty weight: 640 lb (290 kg)
  • Gross weight: 1,060 lb (481 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Bristol Cherub 2-cyl. air-cooled horizontally-opposed piston-engine, 33 hp (25 kW)

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 72 mph (116 km/h; 63 kn)

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ J Lankester Parker (1896 - 1965) OBE FRAeS Hon MSLAE was Chief Test Pilot at Shorts 1918 - 1945 and from 1943 a Director of Short Brothers and Harland
  2. ^ Barnes and James, p.185.
  3. ^ Shorts Quarterly Review p.24.
  4. ^ Barnes and James, p.186.

References[edit]

  • Barnes C.H. & James D.N. Shorts Aircraft since 1900. London (1989): Putnam. p. 560. ISBN 0-85177-819-4.
  • "The Guild of Aircraft Pilots and Navigators of London 1929 - 2004"
  • "The Short Satellite". "Shorts Quarterly Review". Short Brothers and Harland Limited. 2 (3): 24. Autumn 1953. |access-date= requires |url= (help)