A descendant of the Sopwith Camel, the Sopwith Snipe was equipped with a more powerful engine and provided better visibility from the cockpit. Though not much faster than the Camel, the Snipe had a better rate of climb and pilots found it much easier to fly.
On 27 October 1918, Canadian ace William Barker made the Sopwith Snipe famous in a single-handed battle with more than 60 enemy aircraft that earned him the Victoria Cross. Flying the Sopwith Snipe, Captain Elwyn King scored 7 victories making him the highest scoring ace to fly this aircraft.
The Sopwith Buffalo was a British armored fighter/reconnaissance aircraft of the First World War. A single-engined biplane, two examples of the Buffalo were built by Sopwith to carry out reconnaissance missions low over the trenches while protected against machine-gun fire from the ground, but no production followed, with the end of the war removing the need for such an aircraft.
In July 1918, the British Air Ministry requested Sopwith, who was
already building the Sopwith Salamander armored single-seat ground
attack fighter, to build an armored two-seat aircraft to carry out the
dangerous contact patrol mission. This mission involved flying at low
altitude over the battlefield to locate and keep in contact with
attacking forces, therefore keeping commanders in touch with the
progress of the battle. This exposed aircraft carrying out such missions
to heavy small arms fire from enemy trenches, resulting in heavy
Sopwith's design, the 3F.2 Buffalo, was a single-engined tractor biplane, with its two-bay wooden wings taken from Sopwith's earlier Bulldog fighter. Like the Salamander, the forward fuselage was made out of armor plate, weighing about 750 lb (340 kg), with the bottom of the fuselage 0.315 in (8 mm) thick, with the sides and front of 0.179 in (5 mm) plate. The armored box reached back to the observer's cockpit, protecting the crew together with the fuel tanks and pipes, the carburettor and the magnetos.
The first prototype flew on 19 September 1918, flying to France
for evaluation in the field on 27 September. The second prototype, which
had its armor extended further aft, flew in October. While tests showed
that the Buffalo had good performance, and promised to be an excellent
contact patrol aircraft, the end of the war ended plans for large scale
production. The two prototypes were sent to No. 43 Squadron, serving
with the British Army of Occupation at Bickendorf near Cologne, Germany,
but were quickly damaged in crashes.
The Morane-Saulnier Type AI was a French parasol-wing fighter
aircraft produced by Morane-Saulnier during World War I, to replace the
obsolete Morane-Saulnier Type N. Its
engine was mounted in a circular open-front cowling. The parasol wing
was swept back. The spars and ribs of the circular section fuselage were
wood, wire-braced and covered in fabric. The production aircraft were
given service designations based on whether they had 1 gun (designated
MoS 27) or 2 guns (designated MoS 29).
For a World War One aircraft, the Morane-Saulnier A-1 had very modern lines and was very streamlined. Even though 1,210 were produced, and a number of escadrilles were created to operated the Type A1, it never made a big impact at the front. Shortly after entering service, most of the aircraft were replaced by the SPAD XIII. By mid-May 1918 it was withdrawn to serve as an advanced trainer, designated MoS 30. The reason for withdrawl was a suspicion of structural weakness.
Fifty-one MoS 30s were purchased by the American Expeditionary Force
as pursuit trainers. Many Type A1s were used by the Belgian air corps
Built in large numbers, the Salmson 2 was the most widely used reconnaissance aircraft in the final year of the war. A versatile two-seater biplane featuring a new Canton-Unné radial engine, it was also employed as a daylight bomber and ground attack aircraft by French and American air services.
The Pomilio Gamma was an Italian fighter prototype of 1918.
The Pomilio company of Turin designed and manufactured the Gamma, a
wooden, single-seat, single-bay biplane with wings of unequal span, the
upper wing being of greater span than the lower. It was powered by a
149-kilowatt (200-horsepower) SPA 6A water-cooled engine driving a
two-bladed tractor propeller. It had fixed, tail skid landing gear.
The Gamma prototype first flew early in 1918. An Italian official commission observed a demonstration of it, and concluded that although it was fast and had good maneuverability, its rate of climb was insufficient to merit a production order.
Pomilio responded to the Gamma's shortcomings by building a
second prototype, the Gamma IF, fitted with a more powerful
Isotta-Fraschini V6 engine rated at 186 kilowatts (250 horsepower). An
official commission saw a demonstration of the Gamma IF in 1918, but at
first could not agree on whether it merited a production order. During
the final weeks of World War I, the commission finally decided to order a
small number of Gamma IF fighters, although the Gamma IF never entered
Manufactured in Italy and the United States, the Pomilio PE was effectively used by thirty squadrons for reconnaissance and artillery spotting. Like its predecessors, the PC and PD, the PE two-seater biplane had a wood and metal airframe but featured a redesigned tail with larger tailplanes. Built in large numbers, it was very fast, maneuverable and had an excellent rate of climb.
The Leoning M-8 was a 1910s American fighter monoplane designed by Grover Loening and built by his Loening Aeronautical Engineering Company. An order of 5000 for the United States Army Air Corps was canceled when the First World War ended.
The first design by Grover Loening after he had formed his company was a two-seat braced-wing monoplane fighter the M-8. It had a fixed tailskid landing gear and was powered by a nose-mounted Hispano-Suiza engine with a tractor propeller. The pilot and gunner had tandem open cockpits.
The first aircraft was flown in 1918 and after testing the United States Army Air Corps ordered 5000 aircraft to be built. Only two aircraft were delivered to the Army and one to the United States Navy with the designation M-8-0.
At the end of the war the order was canceled. The Navy ordered 46 aircraft in two variants for use as observation aircraft. The Navy also ordered six M-8-S twin-float seaplane versions. A single-seat version was developed for the Army as the Loening PW-2.
The LUSAC-11 (Le Peré United States Army Combat) was an early American Army two-seat fighter aircraft. It was designed during World War I and ordered in large numbers, but the contract was cancelled at the end of the war, and only 30 were built. The type was used for experimental purposes, setting several altitude records during the 1920s.
When the U.S. entered World War I, the Signal Corps had just 55 aircraft, none fit for combat. The American Expeditionary Force was equipped with French types, and the LUSAC was part of a plan to build French designs in the U.S.
Georges Le Peré, a member of the French Aeronautical Mission to the
United States, was tasked by the Engineering Division of the United
States Army Air Service to design a two-seat escort fighter. His design
was a two-bay biplane with upper and lower wings of equal span with
forward stagger. It was of wood and fabric construction, with the
fuselage consisting of a wooden box girder with plywood covering. It was
powered by a 425 hp (317 kW) Liberty L-12 engine cooled by a radiator
faired into the upper wing. Armament was two .30 inch (7.62 mm) machine
guns synchronized to fire through the propeller, with two Lewis guns
flexibly mounted on a Scarff ring at the observer's cockpit.
Large orders for the new design were placed, with Packard, Brewster & Co. and the Fisher Body Corporation, a total of 3,525 ordered. The first prototype made its maiden flight at McCook Field, Dayton, Ohio on 15 May 1918. Despite a forced landing due to fuel starvation on its first flight, testing proved successful, with speeds of 136 mph (219 km/h) being reached. Only two prototypes and 25 production aircraft (by Packard) were completed by the Armistice that marked the end of World War I, and led to mass cancellation of outstanding orders for the LUSAC-11.
Three additional aircraft were completed with 420 hp (317 kW) Bugatti 16 engines as LUSAC-21s. These were delivered in August 1919.
In addition, three strafer aircraft were built, as LUSAGH (Le Per� United States Army Ground Harassment), two with Bugatti engines (LUSAGH-21), one a Liberty (LUSAGH-11). There was also an experimental LUSAC-11 triplane, the LUSAO-11 (Le Pere United States Army Observation), which used two Liberty L-12As.
Two LUSAC-11s were sent to France for evaluation by the Army Air Service just before the end of the War, which resulted in the type being considered unsuitable for combat. A further aircraft sent for evaluation by the French Aéronautique Militaire.
The LUSACs saw no squadron service, being used as liaison aircraft by
US Military attaches in Europe, and for trials work in the United
States. One LUSAC-11, fitted with a turbocharged Liberty, flown by Major
Rudolf Schroeder made an attempt on the world altitude record on 27
February 1920. The pilot's oxygen supply failed during the attempt,
causing Schroeder to pass-out, only regaining consciousness close to the
ground. While Schroeder was hospitalized by the near disaster, the
aircraft had reached a height of 33,113 feet (10,099 m) a world record.
The same aircraft was flown to a height of 34,508 ft (10,518 m) on 28
September 1921 by Lieutenant John A. Macready, for which he won the
Mackay Trophy. The record held for almost two years.
The Phöenix C.I was an Austro-Hungarian First World War reconnaissance and general-purpose Biplane built by the Phöenix Flugzeug-Werke.
The Phöenix C.I was the first original design developed by the Phöenix Flugzeug-Werke It was based on the Hansa-Brandenburg C.II that Phöenix were building under licence. A conventional biplane with a rear fuselage/tailplane similar to aircraft designed by Ernst Heinkel. The C.I had a fixed trailskid landing gear and was powered by a Hiero 6-cylinder inline piston engine, it had two tandem open cockpits for the pilot and observer/gunner. The company built 110 C.Is and then entered service with the KuKLFT in early 1918. After the First World War 30 aircraft were built by the Swedish Army engineering department but they were fitted with a 220 hp (164 kW) Benz inline engine.
The Phöenix D.I was an Austro-Hungarian First World War biplane fighter built by the Phöenix Flugzeug-Werke and based on the Phöenix D-II
The Phöenix D.III was the third design developed by the Phöenix Flugzeug-Werke based on Hansa-Brandenburg designs which it has produced under licence. The D.III was a single-seat biplane fighter with improvements over the original Hansa-Brandenburg design which included more efficient wings, a more powerful 230hp (172kW) Hiero in-line engine. The Phöenix D.III kept the structural improvements,and balanced elevators and balanced ailerons on the upper wings, used in the D.II. The last of 158 aircraft of all three types was delivered on 4 November 1918.
The Fokker D.VII is widely regarded as the best German aircraft of the war. Its development was championed by Manfred von Richthofen. In January 1918, Richthofen tested the D.VII in the trials at Adlershof but never had an opportunity to fly it in combat. He was killed just days before it entered service. When introduced, the D.VII was not without problems. On occasion its wing ribs would fracture in a dive or high temperatures would cause the gas tank to explode. Even so, the D.VII proved to be durable and easy to fly. As noted by one authority, it had “an apparant ability to to make a good pilot out of mediocre material.” When equipped with the BMW engine, the D.VII could outclimb any Allied opponent it encountered in combat. Highly maneuverable at all speeds and altitudes, it proved to be more than a match for any of the British or French fighter planes of 1918.
Winner of the April 1918 fighter competition, the Fokker D.VIII monoplane was delayed by production problems. Only thirty six of them entered service during the last weeks of the war. Equipped with an underpowered engine, the D.VIII was nevertheless an excellent fighter eagerly received by the German air service. Dubbed the “Flying Razor” by Allied pilots, it had the distinction of scoring the last aerial victory of the war.
What really set the Junker D.I apart from any previous aircraft was it's cantilevered low-wing design and corrugated duralumin skin. Duralumin, the same metal used for Zeppelin construction, was light yet strong. The Junkers monoplane was rugid, fast, and agile. The D.I was every fighter pilots' dream. The design was a decade ahead of its time appearing a year too late.
The Pfalz D.XII was the successor to the Pfalz D.IIIa series fighter. They were received into service in late summer of 1918. It was a sturdy, agile, and well designed fighter that nearly rivaled the famed Fokker D.VII in performance. Though the D.XII was an effective fighter aircraft, it was overshadowed by the highly successful Fokker D.VII. It was not produced in great numbers due to the amount of time needed to form the plywood fuselage.
Roland D.VIa aircraft were received in the late Spring of 1918 and were still in use at the end of hostilities in November . The Roland D.VI was purported to have good handling qualities, but most pilots wanted the sensational Fokker D.VII. The clinker built body of the Roland D.VI was final refinement of all the shark-like designs that had come before it.
Modified wing construction and an improved rotary engine made the Siemens-Schuckert D.IV a better aircraft than its predecessor the D.III. Considered superior to the Fokker D.VII, it entered service in small numbers, too late to have much of an impact on the outcome of the air war.
The planes started reaching operational units in August, but of the 280 ordered only 123 were completed by the end of the war, about half of those reaching operational units. In October 1918 it was officially described as superior by far to all single-seaters in use.