Alfred Comte

Alfred Comte - Picture

Aviation History - Alfred Comte - Comte piloting a Comte AC-2 aircraft (~1926)

Alfred Comte Information

Alfred Comte

Alfred Comte

Aviation History - Alfred Comte

Born: 4 June 1895(1895-06-04) Delémont, Switzerland
Died: 1 November 1965(1965-11-01) (aged 70) Zx¼rich, Switzerland
Nationality: Swiss
Occupation: Pilot, entrepreur, engineer
Known for: Aviation entrepreneur (Ad Astra Aero S.A.) construction of civilian and military aircraft

Aviation History - Alfred Comte - Comte piloting a Comte AC-2 aircraft (~1926)

Picture - Comte piloting a Comte AC-2 aircraft (~1926)

Alfred Comte (June 4, 1895 in Delémont - November 1, 1965 in Zx¼rich) was a Swiss aviation pioneer. He was active as a pilot, photographer, instructor, also as one of the first aviation entrepreneurs and was successful in the construction of civilian and military aircraft.


At the age of 15 Alfred Comte built a motorized bicycle. Comte got his private pilot's license in 1913 by the Aero-Club of France. Beginning World War I, he served as a pilot of the Swiss military, then as an instruction officer for military aviation. In 1916, he carried out night flights from Delémont, to prevent air space violations: Porrentruy had been bombed by aircraft of unknown origin. Germany and France consented to a Swiss proposal to mount light-beacons along the Swiss-German-France borders to prevent further mistakes.

Aviation History - Alfred Comte - Comte AC-1

Picture - Comte AC-1

On November 5, 1919 he co-founded an airline providing aerial photography and passenger flights, Comte, Mittelholzer, and Co. In 1920, this company merged with the financially stronger Ad Astra Aero. Alfred Comte was a frequent participant in exhibition events for acrobatic flying and pioneered in flying from Zx¼rich to London. In December 1920 he established a school of aviation of his own, using flying boats among them six Austrian Lohner TL-1917/R aircraft (CH-61 to CH-65) from a base in Oberrieden on Lake Zx¼rich shore. During World War II Comte returned to military aviation duties and was promoted to captain. From 1946 to 1950 he managed once again a school of aviation, then after quit flying and died 1965 in Zurich.

Alfred Comte Schweizerische Flugzeugfabrik

Starting from 1923 up to 1935, Alfred Comte concentrated on airplane design and construction in his own company, Alfred Comte Schweizerische Flugzeugfabrik. In all, around 40 aircraft have been built, additional eight Fokker D.VII under license for the Swiss Air Force. The company had a good reputation, but financially it was not successful, and a fire destroyed some of Comte's designs. The Great Depression hit the small businesses hard, it could even not be saved by switching to the production of tubular steel furniture anymore, and in 1935 the bankruptcy was filed.

From 1923 to 1935, Alfred Comte designed and built several aircraft:

Wild 43 (1923-26), training purpose, 6 built and exported to China and Colombia
Wild X (1927/28), fighting and observing purpose, 8 built and exported to Colombia
AC-1 (1926), fighter, 1 built, Swiss Air Force preferred in an evaluation to buy Dewoitine D.27
AC-2 (?)
AC-3 (1929/30), transport and bombing purpose, 1 built
AC-4 Gentleman (1928-30), two-seat sport/training aircraft, 11 built, used by Swiss Air Force and others
AC-8 (1929/30), passenger aircraft, 3 built, probably one (or AC-4) used by Ad Astra Aero
AC-11 (1931), liaison and survey aircraft, 1 built, rejected by Swiss Air Force
AC-12 Moskito (1931/35?), airliner, 8 built


Roland Eichenberger: Die Flugzeuge von Alfred Comte, Liebefeld 1968.
Roland Eichenberger. Alfred Comte (1895-1965), in: Schweizer Pioniere der Wirtschaft und Technik, Vol. 46. Glarus Verlag, Zx¼rich 1987.

More airplanes.

Source: WikiPedia

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