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EFW  N30  SPERBER

The story which didn't happen ... outside Atlantic Air Combat
 

 
 

Fictional Preamble
During the second half of the 1950s, Germany along with other European countries, busied itself developping a VTOL nuclear strike aircraft as part of the NATO sponsored VAK-191 programme with two companies submitting their own project : Focke Wulf had their vectored thrust FW 1262 (VAK-191B), and EWR their tilting jet VJ-101 (VAK-191C).  Based on a Bristol Siddeley engine loosely related to the similar looking Pegasus from the same company, works went ahead at Focke Wulf and three prototypes had already been extensively tested prior early cancellation of the whole programme due to rising tensions with the USSR.  Under the circumstances, Germany decided to focus on existing designs and war stocks rather than fancy projects.  And since the Government, who had been paying the bills, owned all the intellectual rights, it made known both projects were up for sale.  This abandon called the attention of neighbouring Switzerland who was still struggling to develop an indigenous aircraft industry.   Considering the Swiss Air Force main task was close air support, to defend neutrality while being able to mount raid-type operations, and with major military facilities being burried into mountains, the idea of a close air support aircraft able to dispense from a military air base seemed a perfect fit, so Switzerland purchased the rights for the VAK-191B.

With Flugzeugwerk Altenrhein already busy assembing the FFA-P16, a conventional but nonetheless STOL design, the Federal Aircraft Factory in Emmen (EFW, Eidgenössische Flugzeugwerke Emmen)) was chosen to lead the programme, with Sulzer in Winterthur chosen to assemble the engines, with the well needed assistance of Bristol in United Kindtom and MAN in Germany.

VAK-191B Mk1

VAK-191B Mk1

 

Fictional Design Evolution
EFW quickly ascertained that while the RB-193 engine (originally a Bristol product) around which the aircraft had been designed wasn't as powerful as the Pegasus, it was making quick progress.  One the main drawbacks of the VAK-191B were the two lift engines.  They did ensure VTOL performances (without ordnance), but otherwise were essentially dead weight.  With Bristol promising to improve upon their engine output (from an initial 10150 lbf of the RB193-12 toward 14000 lbf), the Swiss engineers decided to radically modify the design into a STOVL aicraft around a single engine.   In order to do that, they worked intensly to reduce the aircraft empty weight in order to still end up with a fighting machine.  And indeed they ended up with with an amazingly light airframe.

FW 1262

     

EFW N30A

RB-193-12 Main Engine

 

RB-193-12 Lift Engines (Tilt: 12°)

 

RB-193-31 Main Engine

  Type : Twin-spool turbofan
  Length : 101in (2.57 m)
  Diameter : 33 in (84cm)
  Dry weight : 1,742 lb (790 kg)
  Thrust max : 10,163 lbf (4,610kgf)
  SFC : 0.785 lb/hr/lbf

 

  Type : Single spool turbojet
  Length : 51.6 in (1311 mm)
  Diameter : 25.0 in (635 mm)
  Dry weight : 280 lbs (127 kg)
  Thrust max : 5,250 lb (2384 kgf)
  SFC : -

 

  Type : Twin-spool turbofan
  Length : 101in (2.57 m)
  Diameter : 34 in (86cm)
  Dry weight : 1,800 lb (790 kg)
  Thrust max : 14,085 lbf (6,395kgf)
  SFC : 0.615 lb/hr/lbf

The second drawback of the design was its short spanned highly loaded wings.  While it presumably allowed the aircraft to make short supersonic dashes with a proper engine, it would'nt make the aircraft manoeuvrable enough, and ... would not allow a short take off with any kind of external ordnance..  Actually this issuse had been adressed by VFW-Fokker, as a much larger wing had already been designed for a projected Mk2 operational version of the aircraft.  That new wing was adopted naturally, even if EFW further extended the wingspan a little.  The wingtip extension was made removable, in order to mount a pair of air-to-air missiles.    The Swiss eventually ended up with some sort of lightweight Kestrel, maybe less versatile than its British counterpart, but seemingly able to meet the challenge set out by the Swiss Air Force, and the aircraft was name Sperber (French : Epervier  -  English : Sparrowhawk).

Lift Engines Tunnels
The lift engines tunnels were just closed.  The freed volume could have beed used for additional fuel, but instead was used to accommodate various equipment, in particular the aft tunnel to compensate for the forward extension of the weapons bays and the weight of the guns .  As far as the fuel capacity was concerned, the final version of the aircraft actually saw its fuel capacity reduced from 760 gal to 550 gal, a consequence of the weight saving exercise.

 

VAK-191B Mk1

EFW N-30A (VFW-191B Mk3)

 

 

Internal Weapons Bay - Illustration
Among the original features of the German design, at least for a lightweight fighter  was an internal weapons bay, designed to minimize drag for the intended low level supersonic dash.  While supersonic dashes weren't on the Swiss agenda, the weapons bay was natually maintained, and actually extended forward and divided into two separate bays..  The revised arrangement could hold up to four 500lb bombs (the stubby WW2 type rather than the streamlined modern ones which where too long) or six 250lb bombs (a small diameter type of Swedish design).

Rocket Tray v/ Bombs
Following the trend of the day, both bays could receive a "clip" holding a rocket tray.   When in use, the bomb bay doors would snap open with the tray snapping down in the airstream, the whole operation snapping back when the ordnance was delivered, very much like the F-102 Delta Dagger internal weapons operations.  While the number of FFAR rockets to be fired could be selected (a pair, half content of the tray, or all), the lack of accuracy of the rockets made it more a saturation weapon than anything else.  Fired with a 0.1 second interval, it was indeed a deadly spray.

EFW studied three variants for the rockets trays, with one or two rockets per tube, depending on the type :











2"

51mm

T-214

2 rockets

in each tube

34 x 2 = 68

10.00lb×68=680 lb

+ 260 lb

940 lb

2"

51mm

Microcell

2 rockets

in each tube

34 x 2 = 68

10.75lb×68=731 lb

+ 260 lb

991 lb

 

50mm

Oerlikon

2 rockets

in each tube

34 x 2 = 68

10.87lb×68=739 lb

+ 260 lb

999 lb

 

68mm

SNEB

2 rockets

in each tube

24 x 2 = 48

13.80lb×48=662 lb

+ 260 lb

922 lb

2.75"

70mm

Hydra70

1 rocket

in each tube

24

30.28lb×24=727 lb

+ 260 lb

987 lb











The larger American 2.75" rocket was naturally the most powerful and had the greatest range, with the French SNEB coming second.  While the latter was already part of their arsenal, he Swiss Air Force however choosed the locally produced Oerlikon 50mm FFAR..  It also had the advantage, with possibly 2×68 rockets fired in quick succession of the two trays to indeed exercise saturation in the area of impact.  When two trays were installed, the back one was fired first in order to allow the front one to deploy and fire, even if the back one hadn't totally rectract yet, thus further speeding up the firing sequence.

Inspired by similar work carried out by Matra in France, Oerlikon developped a combined rocket pod/fuel tank to cater for the limited internal fuel capacity.

Recce Pack
Alternatively, the weapons bays could accept a photo-reconnaissance pack, divided into the two bays for obivous weight balance purposes

 

 

Internal Guns
Oerlikon and Hispano, both keen to supply the guns for this new aircraft, made several proposals, including their latest producs, either the Oe304RK30 model already equipping the FFP-16 or the HS.825 which had failed to reach production with the same.   With their Venoms armed with HS.404 20mm cannons, FFPA-16s with Oerlikon 304, Hunters with a quartet of 30mm Adens, and Mirages with 30mm DEFA guns (the last two using different ammo cases), ammunition standardization wasn't exactly a high priority within the Swiss Air Force...
 
For close air support, the 30mm ammunition was more appropriate than smaller caliber, but while military were focusing on the gun performances, engineers at EFW were more concerned with the total weight of the set up.  They had set the weight of the ammunition box at 100kg of rounds (roughly 200 20mm HS.404 shells), and the lighter the guns, the better....

Guns       

Cal      

Round

  Shell

   HE

Muzzle

      Rpm

Weight

Ammo

Firing

HS.Mk5

20x110

260gr

102gr

11gr

840m/s

750rpm

2x42kg

84kg

2x175

91kg

14sec

175kg

Bofors 47

20x110

260gr

102gr

11gr

840m/s

700rpm

2x43kg

86kg

2x175

91kg

15sec

177kg















Oe251RK/20

20x128

275gr

120gr

13gr

1050m/s

1750rpm

2x70kg

140kg

2x175

96kg

6sec

236kg

M39

20x102

230gr

102gr

11gr

1040m/s

1500rpm

2x81kg

162kg

2x200

92kg

8sec

254kg















Oe251RK/25

25x116

310gr

165gr

17gr

1040m/s

1650rpm

2x75kg

150kg

2x150

93kg

5sec

243kg















DEFA 530

30x113

450gr

236gr

50gr

815m/s

1200rpm

2x85kg

170kg

2x120

108kg

6sec

278kg

ADEN Mk4

30x113

450gr

236gr

50gr

741m/s

1300rpm

2x87kg

174kg

2x120

108kg

5sec

282kg

HS.825

30x136

450gr

225gr

48gr

1030m/s

1050rpm

2x81kg

162kg

2x120

108kg

7sec

270kg

Oe257RK/30

30x137

550gr

296gr

63gr

980m/s

1200rpm

2x82kg

164kg

2x120

132kg

5sec

296kg

Oe251RK/30

30x97B

450gr

296gr

63gr

630m/s

1400rpm

2x80kg

160kg

2x120

108kg

6sec

268kg

Oe304RK/30

30x173

 890gr

360gr

76gr

1030m/s

1350rpm

2x136kg

272kg

2x  60

107kg

3sec

379kg















The Air Force had a somewhat different approach : they wanted a quick firing gun expelling heavy APHEI shells with a high muzzle velocity, and they made known it wasn't a conflict of opinion, but a demand...  As the DEFA was up to the task, it would either be the French gun or better.  Oerlikon, conscious their 304RK/30 involved an excessive weight penalty, suggested to rework their 251RK/30 around a bastardized ammunition, essentially marrying the 30x97B shell with the HS.825 30x136 case trying to keep the best of the two.  The Air Force thanked Oerlikon for trying their best, but the aircraft design being proven enough to immediately start a small pre-production batch, they preferred an existing design to avoid delays, and therefore opted for the Oe251RK/30.  It lacked muzzle velocity, but besides being a national product it was available off the shelf.

 

External Stores
The German VAK-191B Mk2 revised wing design provided for four 500lb worth underwing stations, two of them being of the "wet" type, to supplement the weapons bay.  Besides modifying the wingtips to allow the carrying of AIM-9B missiles EFW made all wing stations able to carry extra fuel but otherwise implemented the design as purchased.  When used for short range bombing mission, the Sperber could thus fly off with a warload of 4x5000lb bombs carried internally plus another 4 carried externally or twice as many 250lb bombs on tandem launchers - quite a punch for a 6000 lb empty weighted airframe !  For longer range mission it could instead rely on an extra 2x58gal or 4x58gal of fuel to supplement the rather modest internal fuel capacity.   When used as a day interceptor, it could take off vertically with full internal fuel, guns loaded and a pair of wingtip missiles.

 

Specs

 

FGA.1
Kestrel

FGA.2
Kestrel

Hawker
Harrier Gr1

VAK-191

EFW-30
Sperwer

   

 

 

 

 










Length

(no probe)

12.954

14.376

14.376

14.720

16.400

-

-

Wing.span

-

6.985

7.696

7.696

6.160

7.740

-

-

Height

-

3.277

3.454

3.454

4.300

4.300

-

-

Wing Area

-

-

18.68m²

18.68m²

12.50m²

19.00m²

-

-










Weight

Empty

5840 lb

7040 lb

8240 lb

10218 lb

6050 lb

Weight

Empty

Crew

1

150 lb

150 lb

150 lb

150 lb

150 lb

Crew

1

Engine/Main

1 x Pegasus 5

3960 lb

3960 lb

3960 lb

1472 lb

1500 lb

Engine

RB-193

Engines/Lift

2 x RB 162-4D

NA

NA

NA

560 lb

NA

-

-

Fuel

Internal

4940 lb

4940 lb

4940 lb

5775 lb

4180 lb

-

-

Total

Loaded

14890 lb

16200 lb

17290 lb

18175 lb

11880 lb

-

-

Gun pods

Empty

-

2×  550 lb

2×  550 lb

-

NA

-

-

Guns

2xAden

-

2×  200 lb

2×  200 lb

-

2×  176 lb

Guns

2×Oe251/30

Gun ammos

(150 rpg)

-

2×  150 lb

2×  150 lb

-

2×  119 lb

Gun ammos

(120 rpg)

Total

Gun pods

-

2×  900 lb

2×  900 lb

-

NA

-

-

Playload

Fuselage

-

1×2000 lb

1×2000 lb

4×  250 lb

4×  500 lb

Playload

Fuselage

Playload

Wings/inner

2×1000 lb

2×2100 lb

2×2000 lb

2×  250 lb

2×  500 lb

Playload

Wings/Inner

Playload

Wings/outer

-

2×  700 lb

2×  650 lb

-

2×  500 lb

Playload

Wings/Outer

Playload

Wings/tipsr

-

NA

NA

NA

2×  155 lb

Playload

Wings/Tips










Weight

MTO/STOL

17000 lb

25600 lb

26390 lb

19800 lb

16780 lb

Weight

MTO/STOL

Weight

MTO/VTOL

14419 lb

20000 lb

20000 lb

19200 lb

12780 lb

Weight

MTO/VTOL










Playload

Max (STOL)

2000 lb

7600 lb

7300 lb

-

4310 lb

Playload

STOL

Playload

Max (VTOL)

-

3800 lb

2710 lb

-

630 lb

Playload

VTOL










Fuel.Internal

 

650 gal

650 gal

650 gal

760 gal

550 gal

Fuel/Int

-

Fuel.External

Fuselage

-

1×250 gal

-

NA

NA

Fuel/Ext

Fuselage

Fuel.External

Wings/inner

-

2×250 gal

2×100 gal

NA

2×58 gal

Fuel/Ext

Wings/Inner

Fuel.External

Wings/outer

-

2×  85 gal

-

NA

2×58 gal

Fuel/Ext

Wings/Outer










Fuel (Imp gal)

Total (ferry)

650 gal

1570 gal

850 gal

-

782 gal

Fuel/Total

Ferry

Fuel (Imp gal)

Total (CAP)

-

1400 gal

850 gal

-

782 gal

Fuel/Total

CAP

Fuel (Imp gal)

Total (CAS)

-

varied

850 gal

-

782 gal

Fuel/Total

CAS










Engine/Main

Pegasus 5/6

15500 lbf

21500.lbf

21500 lbf

10150 lbf

14085 lbf

Engine

RB193.12/31

Engines/Lift

2 x RB 162-4D

NA

NA

NA

2×5250 lbf

NA

Engine/Lift

NA

Egine

SFC

0.76

0.76

0.76

0.785

0.615

Engine

SFC










Speed

Max

617 kn

635 kn

643 kn

594 kn

690 kn

-

-

Speed

cruise

-

-

-

-

400 kn

-

-

Speed

stall

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Climb

 

30000 ft/min

22000 ft/min

22500 ft/min

-

41000 ft/min

-

-

Ceiling

 

55000 ft

55000 ft

51200 ft

49200 ft

52500 ft

-

-

Range

internal.fuel

-

-

200 nm

216 nm

209 nm

-

-

Range

int/ext fuel

-

-

-

-

-

-

-










Recce

Camera

1 forward

1 oblique

1 oblique

-

Bay pack

Recce

Cameras










Radar

-

None

None

None

None

None

-

-

 
Serial Numbers
While the serials of Swiss Air Force aircrafts show some inconsistencies as a result of Government shifting policies (re: the removal of the P-51D from service and their 2xxx numbers reallocated to Mirages followed by their return ot service with a new set of 9xx numbers, serials they had just a few years before...), the N-30 was logically given the next available block in the four-digit system : 5xxx
 
Serial Numbers - Swiss Air Force (Real...Cheated)
Created in 1936, the Swiss numbering for aircraft is based on a prefix (ex: "J" for ) and a number where the first digit identifies the aircraft, and the following digits the aircraft itself.  In some instances the first of these following digits may identify a sub-type.  

Inconsitencies
While initially started in the 9xx serie when two USAF P-51D were interned during the war, when purchased in quantities, the type was allocated the 2xxx.   Their removal from service in 1958 immediately followed by the return to active service of several WWII assets saw the P-51D renumbered in the 9xx serie again - it seems the reason for the first shift was that more than a hundred of airframes had been acquired which would have lead the P51 numbers beyond its allocated block.  It can only be assumed that less than 100 airframes being returned to service allowed the re-use of the 9xx block but no official records show any justification.

Logically, the N20 Aiguillon should have been allocated a new digit but wasn't.  When allocated the 13xx serie, it showed as if it was a sub-type of the Vampire/Venom which naturally it wasn't.  So even a Swiss clock may have a hickup....

 

Type

Qty

Type Name Start Cheated End Cheated

Qty

Serial

to

Serial Serial

to

Serial

 

 

TR

52

Bu133C Jungermeister 1937 - 1968 -

-

U.49

U.100 -

-

-

 

 

LL

18

Bf108 Taifun 1938 - 1959 -

-

A.201

A.218 -

-

-

 

 

TM

3

Ju52 Aunt Ju 1939 - 1981 -

-

A.701

A.703 -

-

-

 

 

FF

10

Me109D1 - 1939 - 1949 -

-

J.301

J.310 -

-

-

 

 

FF

30

Me109E1 - 1939 - 1949 -

-

J.311

J.340 -

-

-

 

 

FF

50

Me109E3 - 1939 - 1949 >>1968

50

J.341

J.390 -

-

-

 

 

FF

8

Me109E3 - 1945 - 1949 -

-

J.392

J.399 -

-

-

 

 

FF

13

Me109G6 - 1944 - 1949 -

-

J.701

J.713 -

-

-

 

 

LL

5

Fi156 Storch 1940 - 1963 >>1968

5

A.96

A.100 -

-

-

 

 

FF

84

MS406 D3800 1940 - 1959 -

-

J.3

J.84 -

-

-

 

 

FF

100

MS506 D3801 1940 - 1959 -

-

J.101

J.200 -

-

-

 

 

FF

97

MS506 D3801 1940 - 1959 >>1968

97

J.201

J.297 -

-

-

 

 

FF

10

MS506 D3801 1944 - 1959 -

-

J.91

J.100 -

-

-

 

 

FF

9

MS506 D3802 1944 - 1959 >>1968

9

J.406

J.414 -

-

-

 

 

RF

160

EKW C36 - 1942 - 1987 -

-

C.401

C.460 -

-

-

 

 

TR

26

P2-05 - 1947 - 1979 -

-

U.103

U.128 -

-

-

 

 

TR

26

P2-06 (weapons) 1946 - 1981 -

-

U.132

U.157 -

-

-

 

 

FF

4

DH100 Vampire Mk1 1947 - 1974 -

-

J.1001

J.1004 -

-

-

 

 

FF

75

DH100 Vampire FB6 1949 - 1974 -

-

J.1005

J.1079 -

-

-

 

 

FF

3

DH100 Vampire FB6 1960 - 1974 -

-

J.1080

J.1082 -

-

-

 

 

FF

100

DH100 Vampire FB6 1951 - 1974 -

-

J.1101

J.1200 -

-

-

 

 

TM

3

C45F Expeditor 1945 - 1967 -

-

B.6

B.8 -

-

-

 

 

FF

130

P51D Mustang 1948 - 1958 -

-

J.2001

J.2130 -

-

-

 

 

FF

112

P51D Mustang 1948 - 1958 >>1968

79

-

-

- J.901

J.979

 

 

RF

15

F6D Mustang 1948 - 1958 >>1968

9

-

-

- J.981

J.989

 

 

TR

3

TP51D Mustang 1948 - 1958 >>1968

3

-

-

- J.991

J.993

 

 

TR

40

AT6/SNJ Texan/Harvard 1949 - 1968 -

-

U.301

U.340 -

-

-

 

 

FF

1

EFW N20 Aiguillon 1952 - 1952 -

-

-

-

- J.1301

-

-

 

 

FF

3

EFW N20 Aiguillon 1952 - 1952 -

-

-

-

- J.1302

J.1304

 

 

FF

96

EFW N20 Aiguillon 1953 - >>> >>1968

96

-

-

- J.1305

J.1400

 

 

TR

3

DH115 Vampire T55 1953 - 1990 -

-

U.1201

U.1203 -

-

-

 

 

TR

7

DH115 Vampire T55 1954 - 1990 -

-

U.1204

U.1210 -

-

-

 

 

TR

20

DH115 Vampire T55 1958 - 1990 -

-

U.1211

U.1230 -

-

-

 

 

TR

9

DH115 Vampire T55 1968 - 1990 -

-

U.1231

U.1239 -

-

-

 

 

LL

2

L18C Grass Hopper 1952 - 1975 -

-

V.651

V.652 -

-

-

 

 

LL

4

L18C Grass Hopper 1964 - 1975 -

-

V.653

V.656 -

-

-

 

 

FF

125

DH112 Mk1 Venom FB50 1954 - 1984 -

-

J.1501

J.1625 -

-

-

 

 

RF

24

DH112 Mk1 Venom FB50R 1956 - 1984 -

-

J.1626

J.1649 -

-

-

 

 

FF

100

DH112 Mk4 Venom FB54 1956 - 1984 -

-

J.1701

J.1800 -

-

-

 

 

TR

12

P3-03 - 1954 - 1990 -

-

A.803

A.813 -

-

-

 

 

TR

60

P3-05 (weapons) 1956 - 1990 -

-

A.814

A.873 -

-

-

 

 

LL

7

Do27 - 1958 - 2008 -

-

V.601

V.607 -

-

-

 

 

FF

100

F58 Hunter F6 1958 - 1994 -

-

J.4001

J.4100 -

-

-

 

 

FF

30

F58 Hunter FGA.9 1971 - 1994 -

-

J.4101

-

J.4130 -

-

-

 

 

FF

22

F58 Hunter FGA.9 1974 - 1994 -

-

J.4131

-

J.4152 -

-

-

 

 

TR

8

T68 Hunter T68 1974 - 1994 -

-

J.4201

-

J.4208 -

-

-

 

 

HH

10

SA313 Alouette II 1958 - 1992 -

-

V.41

V.50 -

-

-

 

 

HH

20

SA313 Alouette II 1964 - 1992 -

-

V.51

V.70 -

-

-

 

 

FF

4

FFA P16 - 1959 - 1960 -

-

J.3001

J.3004 -

-

-

 

 

FF

96

FFA P16 - 1963 - >>> >>1968

96

-

-

- J.3005

J.3100

 

 

FF

1

MD550 Mirage IIICS 1962 - 1978 -

-

J.2201

- -

-

-

 

 

FF

36

MD550 Mirage IIICS 1966 1964<< 1999 -

-

J.2301

J.2336 -

-

-

 

 

FF

1

MD550 Mirage IIIRS 1964 - 2002 -

-

R.2101

- -

-

-

 

 

FF

17

MD550 Mirage IIIRS 1968 1964<< 2002 -

-

R.2102

R.2118 -

-

-

 

 

FF

2

MD550 Mirage IIIBS 1964 - 2003 -

-

J.2001

J.2002 -

-

-

 

 

FF

1

MD550 Mirage IIIBS 1969 - 2003 -

-

J.2003

-

- -

-

-

 

 

FF

1

MD550 Mirage IIIBS 1972 - 2003 -

-

J.2004

-

- -

-

-

 

 

FF

2

MD550 Mirage IIIDS 1983 - 2003 -

-

J.2011

-

J.2012 -

-

-

 

 

SAM

68×3

BL64 Bloodhound 1964 - 1999 -

-

-

-

- -

-

-

 

 

FF

8

EFW N30 Sperber 1964 - >>> >>1968

8

-

-

- J.5001

J.5008

 

 

HH

24

SA319 Alouette III 1964 - 2010 -

-

V.201

V.224 -

-

-

 

 

HH

60

SA310 Alouette III 1972 - 2010 -

-

V.225

-

V.284 -

-

-

 

 
 
 

___________