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IAe 27 Pulqui I

The I.Ae. 27 Pulqui I was an Argentine jet fighter designed as a single-seat interceptor. It was designed at the "Instituto Aerotecnico" (AeroTechnical Institute) in 1946 by a team led by the renowned French engineer Emile Dewoitine, and Argentine engineers Morchio and Ricciardi. It was based on the conventional propeller powered Dewoitine D-520, modified to give room to a Rolls Royce Derwent V centrifugal turbine engine. The fuselage was semi-monocoque with elliptical cross-section, air intake was in the nose and surrounded the cockpit. The reduced internal fuselage volume forced the fuel tanks to be installed exclusively in the wings, which resulted in a significant reduction of its range.

The turbine could not be started at the first tests, by lack of proper airflow caused by the very long exhaust pipe (the turbine was very short, and was located at the center of the fuselage). An additional air intake was added to the belly of the craft, which was closed on the ground after the jet engine was running. First flight was accomplished 9 August 1947 making it the 8th jet to fly in the world, with 1st Lt. Edmundo [Osvaldo?] Weiss as test pilot. As tests went on it was found that the performances were very poor, with low maximum speed (720 Km/h), and insufficient fuel on board that gave a range of only 800 Km.

The history of this aircraft was short, as its performance was considered unsatisfactory and in the meantime the studies for the more evolved FMA IAe 33 Pulqui II were quite advanced. Nevertheless, its role in the history of aviation is quite significant as it was the first jet combat aircraft developed and built in Argentina and Latin America.

The only prototype with minor modifications, (the wing tips were cut), was later abandoned. The restored prototype is displayed at the National Aeronautics Museum ("Museo Nacional de Aeronautica") of the Argentine Air Force ("Fuerza Aerea Argentina"), at Moron, Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Crew 1
Wingspan, m 11.25
Wing area, m 19.70
Length, m 9.96
Height, m 3.39
EngineJet Rolls-Royce Derwent 5, kg 1633
Empty weight 1358 kg
Loaded weight 3600 kg
Maximum speed 720 km/h
Cruise speed 646 km/h
Climb 1500 m/min
Service ceiling 15500 m
Service range900 km
Armament 4 X 20-mm Oerlikon 20 cannon 4

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Page last modified: 18-11-2011 19:40:08 ZULU