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  FIGHTERVirtual Aircraft Museum / Italy / Adamoli-Cattani  


In 1918, Signori Adamoli and Cattani designed the smallest practicable single-seat fighter around the then most powerful rotary engine extant, the 200hp Le Rhone. The fighter, which was of wooden construction with fabric skinning, was an unequal-span unstag-gered biplane with Warren-truss type interplane bracing, unusual features consisting of the supplanting of orthodox ailerons with hinged and interlinked wing leading edges, and the use of rigid tubes rather than cables for actuation of the movable tail surfaces. The prototype was begun at the Farina works in Turin, but transferred to the Officine Moncenisio in Condove for completion. Armament comprised two 7.7mm machine guns. When flight testing was initiated it was discovered that the Le Rhone engine developed only 160hp and the fighter was thus seriously underpowered, development being abandoned after limited trials. The following estimated performance data were based on the use of a fully rated engine.

Adamoli-CattaniA three-view drawing (881 x 634)

 ENGINE1 x 200hp Le Rhone
  Take-off weight675 kg1488 lb
  Empty weight470 kg1036 lb
  Wingspan8.60 m28 ft 3 in
  Length6.10 m20 ft 0 in
  Max. speed300 km/h186 mph

Alberto Rizzi, e-mail, 29.11.2017 22:56

In 1918 no rotary engine could produce 200 hp; and the Regia Aeronautica chose the "in line" engine formula for the new fighters, that entered service just after W.W. I.


Graham Clayton, e-mail, 25.08.2017 13:06

Why did the Le Rhone engine produce 40 less hp than expected? Were different engines tried to see if one could produce the 200hp that was expected?


Alberto Rizzi, e-mail, 23.06.2017 19:19

For what I know, it never flew: only static tests had been made, just after the end of W.W. I.


Patrick, e-mail, 02.09.2012 23:52

The Le Rhone engine, with full compression rate and supercharged can hit the 200 HP power. I'm impressed with the speed 300 km /h! Well, the torque isn't a problem but it seems too much for a little aircraft (and i LOVE this spec.). Adamoli-Cattani is a good airplane for pilots who will trained between a sopwith camel and a Heinkel 51.


Art Deco, 11.09.2009 15:18

I am extremely dubious about claims made for this aircraft or even if it flew. If successful, there would be more than one. The most common report seema to claim that the 200hp engine produced only 80% power. ie 160hp. Followed by limited flight testing. Limited by what? The roll control is by hinged wing leading edges, not ailerons. The awesome torque produced by the largest rotary engine in the smallest airframe would seem to require a degree of control not available. Does anyone know the true story?


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