The Aviatik Automobil- und Flugapparatefabrik, called Aviatik produced from the year 1914 reconnaissance aircraft for the German army. The special feature of the Aviatik C.I was the fact that this aircraft was the first armed reconnaissance aircraft on the German side and thus laid the foundation for further models.
Development and construction:
After the first Allied aircraft with mounted machine guns were used on October 1914 on the Western Front, the German pilots turned to the military leadership and also demanded the arming of their aircraft.
The company Aviatik then mounted on the already used reconnaissance B.I at the front seat a machine gun and shifted the radiator of the engine upwards to allow the shooter a better field of fire. Under the name C.Ia this aircraft was taken up and used by the German army. In the variant C.Ib then the pilot and the observer changed places, so that the pilot now sat in front and the observer in the back seat. The machine gun was now also relocated and the observer was now able to shoot as a shooter backwards and to the sides, whereby the risk of hitting his own engine was significantly reduced.
This principle of pilot and observer / shooter arrangement was then adopted by all other manufacturers and introduced as a standard.
As the Aviatik C.I was merely a temporary solution, succession models were used after the start of production. During the war, the following variants were developed:
The C.II was basically a C.I, with only a stronger engine installed. There were no other changes with this airplane.
The C.III was fitted with a modified exhaust system and propeller hood, and the stronger C.II engine replaced with the slightly weaker C.I engine. However, as the wing area was also reduced and a few aerodynamic changes were made, the overall speed could be increased. In addition, the observer got a second machine gun, so that he could shoot both backwards, to the sides and forward without having to swing the whole machine gun.
For the first time, the synchronized machine gun for the pilot was installed at the C.V. and the pilot's second machine gun was removed. In addition, a 180PS Argus As.III in-line engine was installed to improve performance. Except for a prototype, no other aircraft of this type was built.
The C.VI was merely a license replica of the DFW C.V of Deutsche Flugzeug-Werke. Since the German army command gave up an order of 1,000 aircraft, not only Aviatik but also Bayerische Flugzeugwerke AG, Luft-Verkehrs-Gesellschaft A.G. and Halberstädter Flugzeugwerke G.m.b.H. used.
The C.VIII was a aircraft that produced again by the Aviatik company. Here, the 180PS Argus engine was swapped for the more mature 160hp Mercedes D III and made some changes to the structure to improve the pilot's view.
At the end of the war, the C.IX was developed, which had a 200hp Benz Bz.IV in-line engine. From this aircraft, however, only three prototypes were built until the production had to be stopped because of the surrender.
Use in the First World War:
The Aviatik reconnaissance aircraft were used throughout the war on all fronts, but especially on the Western Front.
The C.I and C.VI versions were built and used particularly successfully and in large quantities.
In 1916, an aviation aircraft that had fallen into Russian hands served the designer Elysée Alfred Descamps as a model for the Russian aircraft Anatra D.
The only surviving Aviatik aircraft is today in Brussels at the Royal Museum of the Army. This aircraft was forced to land by Belgian forces in 1916 and has survived until today.
|Typ:||Armed reconnaissance aircraft|
|Engine:||Water-cooled six-cylinder inline engine Benz Bz III with 160 PS|
|Maximum speed:||142 km/h|
|Armament:||1 machine gun 7,92 mm Parabellum|
You can find the right literature here:
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