The Dorand AR.1 was a French reconnaissance aircraft, which should establish the pull propeller in two-seat aircraft in the French Air Force.
Development and construction:
The French company Section Technique de l'Aeronautique from Chalais-Meudon built aircraft even before the First World War, including the DO.1 model. This aircraft was a light model with a pulling propeller, at that time pusher propellers were almost exclusively used in France.
At the beginning of 1914 a contract for the delivery of this type of aircraft was negotiated with Russia, but the outbreak of the First World War prevented delivery, instead the aircraft were included in the French Air Force and used as reconnaissance aircraft.
However, it quickly became apparent that the DO.1 aircraft were insufficient for military use and were quickly replaced by the newer pressure propeller machines from the Farman company. Thus began the development of a successor aircraft to the DO.1.
The aircraft, initially designated as AR.1 A2, was particularly distinguished by its negative staggered wings and a fuselage lying on struts above the lower wing. A Renault in-line engine was used for the drive, as these engines were the only ones available in sufficient numbers in France. In contrast to the two-seater reconnaissance aircraft commonly used in France, the engine was used again as a traction engine, with a front cooler and an exhaust manifold above the upper wing. The responsible designer Dorand wanted to show the advantages of such a construction and technically connect it to the advanced aircraft of the German Reich.
In September 1916, testing was completed, the aircraft was presented to the French Ministry of Defense and series production began.
Use in the First World War:
From April 1917, the first squadrons of the French Air Force were equipped with the Dorand AR.1. Together with the AR.2, which was developed and built almost at the same time, these aircraft should serve as reconnaissance aircraft and replace the outdated Farman aircraft. Due to the low performance, however, the Dorand only remained in service for a short time and were withdrawn from the Western Front at the beginning of 1918 and only served for training pilots.
In addition to France, the Serbian Air Force also used a few Dorand AR.1 aircraft. The American expeditionary force also had 22 AR.1 and 120 AR.2 aircraft.
|Weight:||810 kilograms empty|
|Engine:||a water-cooled in-line engine Renault 8Gdy, 200 HP (147 kW)|
|Maximum speed:||160 km/h|
|Range:||Max. 3 hours|
|Armament:||2 - 3 machine guns 7,7 mm
80 kilograms bomb load