А.Александров, Г.Петров Крылатые пленники России
РАФ B.E.2e / RAF B.E.2e
Весной 1916 года разработана и запущена в серию самая массовая машина семейства B.E.2 - B.E.2e, одностоечный полутораплан с прямыми законцовками крыльев, увеличенным размером киля и уменьшенным стабилизатором. Он начал поступать на фронт в июле, в разгар боёв на Сомме. Самолет был проще в управлении, чем B.E.2c, но его оборонительные возможности оставались низкими. Вероятно поэтому из 1803 B.E.2e 913 отправили в учебные части.
Разведчики завода РАФ применялись на всех фронтах первой мировой, где воевали англичане. B.E.2c и d составляли матчасть 14 дивизионов RFC и одного авиакрыла RNAS, 17 дивизионов летали на B.E.2e. Несмотря на то, что весьма посредственные летные и боевые характеристики этих аппаратов делали их легкой добычей немецких истребителей, B.E.2c были переведены на учебные аэродромы только в марте 1917-го, а B.E.2e провоевали до конца войны. Однако мало кто из них выдерживал более 20 боевых вылетов.
В 1916 году несколько B.E.2e поступило в Россию. До революции они использовались как учебные. В гражданской войне, из-за острой нехватки самолетов как у белых, так и у красных, эти аэропланы попали на фронт, а затем до 1925 года опять служили в качестве учебных и сельскохозяйственных машин. Такое долголетие в суровых условиях можно объяснить высокой надежностью и низкой аварийностью.
Норвегия закупила небольшое количество B.E.2e для своих ВВС после войны. Эти машины также активно эксплуатировались до середины 20-х годов.
Размах, м 12,42
Длина, м 8,31
Высота, м 3,40
Площадь крыла, кв.м 34,50
Сухой вес, кг 630
Взлетный вес, кг 962
мощность, л.с. 100
Скорость макс., км/ч 132
Дальность полета, км 330
Набор высоты, м/мин 1800/20,3
Потолок, м 3050
Экипаж, чел 2
Вооружение 1-2 пулемета
44 кг бомб
G.Swanborough, P.Bowers United States Military Aircraft Since 1909 (Putnam)
В.Е.2e - развитие машин серии В.Е.2d. Увеличен размах верхнего крыла. Усилено шасси. Стойки крыльев и шасси прикрыты обтекателями. Увеличена площадь киля. Двигатель более мощный - RAF-1a (100 л. с.). Обтекатели, более тщательная отделка и капотирование двигателя позволили улучшить качества машины.
А.Шепс Самолеты Первой мировой войны. Страны Антанты
Разведчик BE-2e - двухместный разведчик, одностоечный биплан, почти полутораплан; верхнее крыло с очень большими консольными частями и со шпренгелями. Фюзеляж тонкий, с неглубокой посадкой людей. Двигатель - RAF-1A в 90 л. с., двухрядный, 8-цилиндровый, воздушного охлаждения. Винт четырехлопастный. Два выхлопных коллектора двигателя были выведены вверх перед центропланом. Расчалки коробки крыльев - стальные профилированные ленты. Вооружения не было. Этот самолет выпуска 1915 г. отличался хорошей летучестью, был устойчив в полете, легок в управлении, мог выполнять фигуры высшего пилотажа. В России появился во второй половине 1916 г., применялся в гражданской войне и встречался на аэродромах до 1925 г. Был его одноместный вариант. В 1922-1923 гг. использовался также в качестве самолета сельскохозяйственной авиации для опыления садов и полей. Бак для химикатов был установлен в передней кабине.
Близкий к нему тип BE-2c, значащийся в числе приобретенных, по-видимому, был доставлен в Архангельск, но не вывезен оттуда. Как и тип BE-2e - это был двухстоечный биплан с двигателем РАФ в 90 л. с.
Двигатель , марка||РАФ-1А
мощность, л. с.||90
Длина самолета, м||8,5
Размах крыла, м||12,4
Площадь крыла, м2||33,5
Масса пустого, кг||630
Масса топлива+ масла, кг||133+13
Масса полной нагрузки, кг||309
Полетная масса, кг||959
Удельная нагрузка на крыло, кг/м2||28,6
Удельная нагрузка на мощность, кг/лс||10,7
Скорость максимальная у земли, км/ч||~100
Время набора высоты||
Потолок практический, м||3500
Продолжительность полета, ч.||3,2
P.Hare Royal Aircraft Factory (Putnam)
B.E.2e, f & g
Designed with the admirable intention of bringing about an improvement in the B.E.2's somewhat outdated performance, the 'e' variant had single-bay wings of unequal span and with outwardly-raked tips, the long upper-wing extensions being braced from inverted-vee kingposts above the interplane struts. The wings were rigged at a constant incidence, without wash-out. The tailplane was also new, being of reduced area and also having outwardly-raked tips. A larger fin with a curved leading edge was adopted for the new machine. There seems to have been no attempt to reverse the crew positions, although the arrangement of the fuel tanks was again revised.
The prototype, which was created by fitting the new wings and tail surfaces to Bristol-built production B.E.2c number 4111, made its first flight on 18 February 1916. As had been expected, its performance was somewhat better than that of earlier variants, and on 1 March Mervyn O'Gorman informed the War Office that its maximum speed was 97mph at ground level and about 90mph at 6,000ft. There is some reason to believe that these results may have been obtained using the R.A.F.1b engine, which was rated at 105hp, but this engine did not enter production, and the 90hp R.A.F.1a remained the standard powerplant. Thus powered, the B.E.2e's speed was recorded as 82mph at 6,000ft, which, although not fast, was at least ten per cent faster than the B.E.2c at the same altitude.
Lateral control was reported as being 'very much better', landing was 'more easy', and climb increased by between seven and ten per cent. These improvements were considered sufficient to justify putting the B.E.2e into large-scale production, and also having all unfulfilled orders for earlier variants completed as B.E.2es. While these machines were all taken on charge by the Royal Flying Corps as B.E.2es, however, it was found that, in practice, they were of three distinct and different types: the B.E.2e as designed, the B.E.2c fuselage fitted with the new tail and single-bay wings, and the B.E.2d fuselage similarly equipped. Each type had a different arrangement of fuel tanks and a slightly different performance. In addition, those with the B.E.2d fuselage retained the dual controls of that variant. This made maintenance and the requisitioning of spares unnecessarily difficult, and clearly required some easy means by which the three types could be distinguished. The RFC therefore decided that aeroplanes with single-bay wings and the B.E.2c fuselage would be designated the B.E.2f, and those with the B.E.2d fuselage would be B.E.2gs.
Although the B.E.2e's performance was an improvement on that of its predecessors, it was less than adequate for service on the Western Front and, since the machine was as poorly armed as previous variants, losses were high. Nonetheless, the B.E.2e carried on to the end of the war, gradually being replaced by the R.E.8 and various other, more modern, types.
The B.E.2e also served in every other theatre of war and, by the time of the Armistice, when all outstanding orders were cancelled, it had been produced in greater numbers than any other B.E.2 variant. In addition, a very great number served in training establishments in England, and it was rare indeed for any pilot to gain his wings without having flown one.
Allegations that the long extensions on the upper wing were structurally unsound, and that they would collapse if too much stress was put on them by violent manoeuvres, were investigated by the Royal Aircraft Factory and proved to be unfounded. Despite this the rumours persisted, and prompted a number of pilots to treat their mounts with undue caution.
As with the B.E.2c, at least one attempt was made to fit the 150hp Hispano-Suiza, utilising a car-type frontal radiator of the type by that time used on the S.E.5. Although the installation was technically a great success, it was not adopted for production, simply because a number of other aircraft - most notably the S.E.5 - had a better claim to the limited supply of engines then available.
At least one experimental version was built with wings of increased chord and of R.A.F.18 section, although neither its intended purpose nor relative success can now be ascertained.
After the war use of the B.E.2e was quickly discontinued. Only a handful found their way on to the civil register, perhaps reinforcing the generally held opinion that the type was staid and uninteresting, but the type was used by a number of foreign air services, notably that of Norway, until the mid-1920s.
90hp R.A.F.1a V-8
105hp R.A.F.1b V-8
40ft 6in (upper);
30ft 6in (lower);
chord 5ft 6in;
gap 6ft 3in;
wing area 360sqft;
stagger 2ft 0in;
dihedral 3 1/2°;
incidence 4° 9";
length 27ft 3in;
height 11ft 9in.
Performance (R.A.F.1a) :
90mph at sea level;
82mph at 6,500ft;
climb 20min to 6,000ft;
max. speed 97mph at sea level;
O.Thetford Aircraft of the Royal Air Force since 1918 (Putnam)
Two-seat Corps Reconnaissance aircraft developed from celebrated B.E. 2c, some of which also remained in service in 1918. The B.E. 2e equipped Nr#. 30, 31, 114 and 269 Squadrons in October 1918. Also used by training schools. One 90-h.p. R.A.F. 1a engine and loaded weight of 2,100 lb. Max. speed, 82 m.p.h. at 6,500 ft. Climb, 182 ft./min. Endurance, 3 1/4 hours. Service ceiling, 11,000 ft. Span, 40 ft. 9 in. length, 27 ft. 3 in.
F.Manson British Bomber Since 1914 (Putnam)
Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2C/E Bombers
As the 90hp R.A.F. 1A engine became available in sufficient numbers it was adopted as standard in the B.E.2C, replacing the Renault, and this engine was retained in the other two variants, the B.E.2D with dual controls, and the B.E.2E which reached the RFC in France during the Battle of the Somme, No 34 Squadron bringing with it a full complement from England on the 15th. The B.E.2E featured a new single-bay wing-structure and with a substantial upper wing overhang.
Although the B.E.2C, 2D and 2E continued in service on the Western Front throughout much of 1917, their use as bombers declined after the autumn of 1916 owing to their vulnerability to ground fire and enemy fighters, and their inability to carry a worthwhile bomb load.
Powerplant: B.E.2E. 90hp R.A.F.1A; 105hp R.A.F.IB; 150hp Hispano-Suiza; 75hp Rolls-Royce Hawk.
Dimensions: B.E.2E. Span, 40ft 9in; length, 27ft 3in; height, 12ft 0in; wing area, 360 sq ft.
Weights: B.E.2E. Tare, 1,431 lb; all-up (two 25 lb bombs), 2,080 lb.
Performance: B.E.2E (R.A.F.1A). Max speed, 90 mph at sea level.
Armament: A single Lewis machine gun was sometimes carried on a spigot mounting aft of the rear cockpit.
O.Thetford British Naval Aircraft since 1912 (Putnam)
Two-seat Corps reconnaissance aircraft, a development of the B. E.2c and B. E.2d, used mainly by the RFC but some 95 were transferred to the RNAS for service at training schools such as Cranwell. Some of the RNAS trainers had the 75 hp Rolls-Royce Hawk engine instead of the standard 90 hp RAF IA. Loaded weight, 2,100 lb. Maximum speed 90 mph at sea level. Climb, 53 min to 10.000 ft. Endurance, 4 hr. Service ceiling, 9,000 ft. Span, 40 ft 9 in. Length, 30 ft 6 in.
G.Swanborough, P.Bowers United States Navy Aircraft Since 1911 (Putnam)
The B.E.2 series was introduced by the British Royal Aircraft Factory (later Establishment, or R.A.E.) in 1912. The B.E.2E, of which 12 were bought by the A.E.F. for training in England, differed from early versions in having modified wings with a single bay of struts and extensive overhang on the upper instead of two-bay equal-span wings. Power plant was a 90 h.p. R.A.E. 1A air-cooled V-8 engine.
Span, 40 ft. 9 in.; length, 27 ft. 3 in.; wing area, 360 sq. ft.; gross weight, 2,100 lb.; high speed, 90 m.p.h.
W.Green, G.Swanborough The Complete Book of Fighters
ROYAL AIRCRAFT FACTORY B.E.2E
First flown in February 1916 and destined to be built in larger numbers than the B.E.2c, the B.E.2e differed from the former in having single bay wings of unequal span and a new tailplane. Provision was made for extra fuel in a tank under the port upper wing and for dual controls, but the former was seldom fitted. The large upper wing overhang was braced from inverted-Vee kingposts above the interplane struts, and the standard engine remained the 90 hp RAF la, as the 105 hp RAF lb that was intended to be used in the B.E.2e did not reach production. From production totalling 1,320 aircraft (plus some B.E.2c and 2d conversions), B.E.2e’s were issued to 11 Home Defence squadrons of the RFC (as well as many units on the Western Front and elsewhere). Like the B.E.2c, the 2e often carried a single Lewis gun in the front cockpit, for which assorted mountings were available. An alternative armament tried by some of the Home Defence aircraft for anti-Zeppelin patrols comprised a quartet of Le Prieur rockets, the launching rails for which were attached to the interplane struts, two each side and angled upwards. Little success was achieved by the B.E.2e as a fighter, its performance being inadequate for aerial combat by 1916, and heavy losses were suffered by the RFC squadrons flying the type in France. Retroactively, the designations B.E.2f and B.E.2g were applied to distinguish, respectively, between those B.E.2e’s converted from 2c’s and those built as 2e’s or converted from 2d’s, as their fuel systems and capacities were significantly different.
Max speed, 90 mph (145 km/h) at sea level, 75 mph (121 km/h) at 10,000 ft (3050 m).
Time to 10,000 ft (3 050 m), 53 min.
Service ceiling, 9,000 ft (2 743 m).
Endurance, 4 hrs.
Empty weight, 1,431 lb (649 kg).
Loaded weight, 2,100 lb (953 kg).
Span, 40 ft 9 in (12,42 m).
Length, 27 ft 3 in (8,31 m).
Height, 12 ft 0 in (3,66 m).
Wing area, 360 sqft (33,44 m2).