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Encyclopedia > Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire

The Sapphire was a jet engine produced by Armstrong Siddeley in the 1950s. It was the ultimate development of work that had started as the Metrovick F.2 in 1940, an advanced axial flow design with an annular combustion chamber that developed over 10,000 lbf (4450kg). It powered the Gloster Javelin, Hawker Hunter, Handley Page Victor and English Electric Lightning. Production was also started under license in the United States by Wright Aeronautical as the J65, powering a number of US designs. This article should be split into multiple articles accessible from a disambiguation page. ... The Armstrong-Siddeley automobiles (and later aircraft engines) were an English marque manufactured from 1919 (after the company was formed in 1917 by a merger between two Coventry_based companies, Armstrong-Whitworth and Siddeley-Deasy) to 1960. ... An axial compressor is the name used in the aircraft industry to refer to a particular type of compressor used in jet engines. ... The Gloster Javelin was an interceptor aircraft that served with Britains Royal Air Force in the late 1950s and most of the 1960s. ... The Hawker Hunter was a British jet fighter aircraft of the 1950s. ... The Handley Page Victor was a British jet bomber aircraft, one of the V bombers intended to carry Britains nuclear arsenal. ... The English Electric Lightning is a supersonic British fighter aircraft of the Cold War era, particularly remembered for its natural metal exterior that was used throughout much of its service life with the Royal Air Force and the Royal Saudi Air Force. ... Wright Aeronautical was an aviation venture of the Wright Brothers. ...


Design of the Sapphire started at Metropolitan-Vickers (Metrovick) in 1943, as a larger version of the F.2, which was also being re-designed for more power. The larger F.2 was soon running and eventually developed 4,000 lbf (18 kN) thrust, but the only project to select it, the Saunders-Roe SR.A/1, was cancelled. By this point the F.9 was developing about 7,500 lbf (33 kN), somewhat more than its competitor from Rolls-Royce, the Avon. Interest in the design was high, and it was considered as either the main or backup powerplant for most late-40s/early-50s British designs. Metropolitan-Vickers, or Metrovick, was a British heavy industrial firm of the early-to-mid 20th century formerly known as British Westinghouse. ... The Saunders-Roe SR.A/1 was a prototype fighter aircraft tested by the Royal Air Force shortly after World War II. It is unique in being the only jet-powered flying boat fighter ever flown. ... The Rolls Royce logo Rolls-Royce is a set of several companies, all deriving from the British automobile and aero-engine manufacturing company founded by Henry Royce and C.S. Rolls in 1906. ... The Rolls-Royce Avon turbojet was developed by Cyril Lovesey who had previously been in charge of Merlin development at Rolls-Royce. ...


At about the same time the Ministry of Supply demanded that Metrovick exit the industry in order to reduce the number of companies they had to deal with. Their design team was quickly snapped up by Armstrong Siddeley. Although Armstrong Siddeley already had a turbine development of their own, it was focused entirely on turboprops, and the Metrovick team was a welcome addition. Work on the F.9 continued, now renamed the AASa.6. The engine was soon passing tests at ever-increasing power settings, becoming the first British engine to be rated at 10,000 lbf (44 kN). A Turboprop or turboshaft engine is a type of gas turbine. ...


Wright purchased a license for the Sapphire in 1950, with plans to have the production lines running in 1951. However a series of delays led to its service introduction slipping a full two years, by which point the Pratt & Whitney J57 was on the market and took many of the J65's potential sales. Nevertheless once it entered production it proved to be as good as the British versions, and along with the Martin B-57, its original target market, the J65 went on to power versions of the Republic F-84 and Douglas A-4. The Pratt & Whitney JT3C was a turbojet engine of the 1950s. ... The English Electric Canberra was a first-generation jet bomber manufactured in large numbers through the 1950s, and remaining in service until the early years of the 21st century. ... The F-84 Thunderjet was an American built fighter-bomber aircraft made by the Republic Aviation Company. ...


 
 

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