Friday, March 13, 2009

PIAGGIO-DOUGLAS PD808 VESPA-JET


1964–81



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STANDARD DATA: Seats 5-9. Gross wt. 18,000. Empty wt. 10,650. Fuel capacity 984. Engines two 3,368-lb. s.t. Rolls-Royce Bristol Viper turbojets.
PERFORMANCE: Top mph 529. Cruise mph 497. Stall mph 104. Initial climb rate 5,400. Range 1,332. Ceiling 45,000. Takeoff distance (35') 3,180. Landing distance (50') 2,990.

Under an agreement signed in 1961, Piaggio and Douglas Aircraft developed the PD-808 for military and commercial use. The aircraft was designed at Douglas and constructed by Piaggio. Taking to the air for the first time in 1964, the PD-808 was powered by Bristol Siddeley Viper turbojets mounted on the sides of the rear fuselage. Accommodations provided for a crew of one or two, five passengers in individual seats, bar, toilet, and baggage space.

Power increased in 1966 to 3,300 lbs. s.t. The PD-808 differed from the original model by having larger tip tanks, a longer dorsal fin, and a forward-sliding nose fairing. By 1972, the aircraft was available in several versions: a five-seat executive version, a seven-seat executive transport, a six-seat version for the Italian Air Force, and one powered by 3,500-lb. s.t. AiResearch turbofans. Other PD-808s are powered by twin 3,360-lb. s.t. turbojets drawing from two integrated tanks of 511 gallons total capacity and wingtip tanks with 473 gallons total capacity.



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