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Trident and VC 10

15 February 2021

52° 05′ 34″ N / 00° 07′ 41″ E

Hawker-Siddeley Trident 2E at the Imperial War Museum at Duxford—©2018 Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

This marvelous example of Hawker Siddeley’s Trident, or HS-121 Trident, (the design originated with de Havilland as the DH.121) is in colors of British European Airways. A trio of Rolls-Royce Spey turbofan engines powered this airliner, the world’s first trijet airliner! And it was speedy, cruising as quickly as 610 mph! It required long take distances for taking off of about 6000 feet. It was a hot aircraft which could climb as well as descend quickly with the landing gear used as air brakes below 320 mph. The 2E was the extended range version with Rolls-Royce Spey 512 turbofan engines, slats replaced leading edge flaps and increased wingspan. This airliner and many others is a possession of the Duxford Aviation Society’s British Airliner Collection, of which several aircraft are on display at the Imperial War Museum at Duxford (IWM–Duxford).

Hawker-Siddeley Trident 2E at the Imperial War Museum at Duxford—©2018 Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

52° 05′ 35″ N / 00° 07′ 42″ E

BAC Super VC10 at the Imperial War Museum at Duxford (the pair of engines on the tail’s port said can’t quite be discerned)—©2018 Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

The design began with Vickers Armstrong but became owned by BAC and this BAC Super VC10 is in BOAC-Cunard livery. VC-10s are noted for their rear positioned four engines (Rolls-Royce Conway Mk 301 turbofans) in two pairs. Designed with long legs as well as to be favorable in the hot and high conditions of Africa. Also considering rough runway conditions of many airports in Africa the landing gear was made to be short as well as strong with low pressure tires. It routinely made the quickest transAtlantic crossings of a bit over five hours, beaten consistently in the airliner category only by the Concorde. The Super variety was a stretched version to accommodate 151 passengers which was up from 135. This airliner and many others is a possession of the Duxford Aviation Society’s British Airliner Collection, of which several aircraft are on display at the Imperial War Museum at Duxford (IWM–Duxford).

BAC Super VC10 at the Imperial War Museum at Duxford (the pair of engines on the tail’s port said can’t quite be discerned)—©2018 Joseph May/Travel for Aircraft

 

2 Comments leave one →
  1. theflyingyorkshireman permalink
    15 February 2021 07:57

    Enjoyed seeing these vintage airliners on display at Duxford, Joe! Two bits of trivia: The Trident nosegear was not centred, but in line with the captain’s seat; and on British Caledonian’s (and other) VC-10s one could fly in rearward-facing seats! (Another major attraction at Duxford, of course, is the American Air Museum, of which I am proud to be a charter member.) “Keep Calm and Carry On,” old friend…

    • travelforaircraft permalink*
      15 February 2021 23:17

      David, What a great opportunity you took well advantage of being a charter member of the American Air Museum 🙂 I had intended to be back visiting Duxford but COVID postponed all that. When I was there at Duxford the airliners looked as if they were available at times to board but not at the time I was there. I like the idea of the VC-10’s rear facing seating option…they should all be that way, especially with a video camera giving passengers a view ahead. I couldn’t find it but didn’t the Trident’s nose gear unit also rotate 90 degrees when being extended as well as retracted?

      I saw the interior of a Trident at the de Havilland Museum and it was remarkably modern in its day. The cockpit especially. I’m sure you would have been impressed.

      Stay well David — it will be good to get back there. I hope sooner than later 🙂

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