Wednesday 16 December 2009

The Breguet 1001 Taon was a 1950s French prototype jet strike fighter aircraft built by Breguet for NATO requirement.

Design and development

In 1953 European aircraft manufacturers were invited by NATO to submit aircraft for evaluation for the "LWSF" (Light Weight Strike Fighter) role. The Taon (en: Gadfly, but also an anagram of NATO or the French version OTAN) was designed to meet the requirement. The Taon was a small mid-wing monoplane with swept wings and tail surfaces and retractable tricycle undercarriage. The aircraft was powered by a Bristol Orpheus BOr.3 turbojet. The company was contracted to build three prototypes, the first aircraft flying on the 26 July 1957. The second aircraft incorporated improvements and had a slightly longer fuselage. Development was discontinued and only two aircraft were built.

Operational service

The Taon was evaluated without success, along with other designs which included the Aeritalia G.91, Northrop N-156, Dassault √Čtendard VI, Sud-Est Baroudeur and Aerfer Ariete. The NATO nations did not order a common aircraft ( it's only German and Italy have ordered some G91s) and the French government preferred to pursue development of the √Čtendard.

The aircraft did set an international speed record for a 1,000 km (620 mi) closed circuit, it achieved a speed of 1,046.65 km/h (650.36 mph) at 7,620 m (25,000 ft) on 25 April 1958. On 23 July, the record was broken again with a speed of 1,075 km/h (667.98 mph



Variants

Br 1001
Prototype powered by a Bristol Orpheus BOr.3 engine, two built.
Br 1002
Proposed missile-carrying interceptor, not built.
Br 1004
Proposed production version powered by a Bristol Orpheus BOr.12 engine, not built.

Specifications (Br 1001 Taon)

General characteristics

  • Crew: One pilot
  • Length: 11.68 m (38 ft 3¾ in)
  • Wingspan: 6.8 m (22 ft 3¾ in)
  • Height: 3.7 m (12 ft 1¾ in)
  • Wing area: 14.7 m² (158.23 ft²)
  • Gross weight: 5,000 kg (11,023 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Bristol-Siddeley Orpheus B.Or.3 turbojet, 21.6 kN (4,850 lbf) thrust

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 1,194 km/h (742 mph)

Armament

  • (proposed) four 12.7 mm (0.5 in) Colt-Browing machine-guns

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