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Supermarine Baby Aircraft Information

Supermarine Baby

Manufacturer: Supermarine
Designed by: F. J Hargreaves
Introduction: 1918
Status: Prototype
Number built: 1
Variants: Supermarine Sea King Supermarine Sea Lion I

The Supermarine Baby was a British flying boat fighter aircraft of the World War I designed and built by the Supermarine Aviation Works. Although only one was built, it formed the basis for the later Sea King fighter and Sea Lion I racer.

Design and development

The Baby was designed to meet an Admiralty requirement for a single seat floatplane or flying boat fighter, capable of operating from the Royal Navy's seaplane carriers, demanding a speed of 110 mph (177 km/h) and a ceiling of 20,000 ft (6,100 m). Supermarine received an order for three aircraft, while orders were also placed for prototypes from Westland (the Westland N.1B) and Blackburn (the Blackburn N.1B)

The aircraft was a single engined pusher biplane, with folding, single-bay wings and a T-tail. It had a streamlined wooden hull with the pilot's cockpit located in the nose. The first prototype, serial number N59 flew in February 1918, powered by a 200 hp (149 kW) Hispano-Suiza 8 engine. It was later fitted with a Sunbeam Arab of similar power. By this time, however, the Royal Naval Air Service was operating Sopwith Pup landplanes from flying off platforms aboard ships, and the success of the Pup (and later the Sopwith Camel) lead to the abandonment of the N.1B programme. The second prototype was delivered as spare parts to support testing of the first prototype, while the third was not completed.

Despite the Baby's abandonment, it formed the basis for the Supermarine Sea Lion I racing aircraft, which flew in the 1919 Schneider Trophy, and the Supermarine Sea King fighter.


Data from Supermarine Aircraft since 1914

General characteristics

Crew: 1, pilot
Length: 26 ft 4 in (8.02 m)
Wingspan: 30 ft 6 in (9.29 m)
Height: 10 ft 7 in (3.22 m)
Wing area: 309 ft (28.7 m)
Empty weight: 1,699 lb (770 kg)
Loaded weight: 1,699 lb (1,407 kg)
Powerplant: 1x Hispano-Suiza, 200 hp (149 kW)


Maximum speed: 116 mph (101 kn, 187 km/h)
Service ceiling: 10,700 ft (3,260 m)
Endurance: 3 hr
Climb to 10,000 ft (3,050 m): 25 min 10 s

Related development

Supermarine Sea King
Supermarine Sea Lion I

Comparable aircraft

Blackburn N.1B
Westland N.1B

Andrews, C.F. and Morgan, E.B. Supermarine Aircraft Since 1914. London: Putnam Books Ltd.,2nd revised edition 2003. ISBN 0-851-77800-3.
Bruce, J.M. British Aeroplanes 1914-18. London:Putnam, 1957.
London, Peter. British Flying Boats. Stroud, UK: Sutton Publishing, 2003. ISBN 0-7509-2695-3.
Mason, Francis K. The British Fighter since 1912. Annapolis, USA:Naval Institute Press, 1992. ISBN 1-55750-082-7.

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Source: WikiPedia

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