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Aug 11, 2016, 02:39 PM
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Savoia-Marchetti SM.81 Pipistrello (Bat)

From Wikipedia:

Manufacturer: Savoia-Marchetti

First flight: 1934

Introduction: 1935

Retired: 1950

Number built: 535

Developed from: Savoia-Marchetti S.73

The Savoia-Marchetti SM.81 Pipistrello (Italian: bat) was the first three-engine bomber/transport aircraft serving in the Italian Regia Aeronautica. When it appeared in 1935, it represented a real step ahead in Italian military aviation: it was fast, well armed and had a long range. It proved effective during the war with Ethiopia and the Spanish Civil War.[2] Despite being too slow to remain competitive as a bomber in the later years of World War II, it was one of the most flexible, reliable and important aircraft of the Regia Aeronautica from 1935-1944, and adapted to second-line duties in a wide range of tasks.

SM.81Three-engine bomber, transport aircraft, 535 built.
SM.81BExperimental twin-engine prototype, one built.

Specifications (Savoia-Marchetti SM.81)

General characteristics
Crew: 6
Length: 18.3 m (58 ft 5 in)
Wingspan: 24 m (78 ft 9 in)
Height: 4.3 m (14 ft 7 in)
Wing area: 92.2 m² (1,001 ft²)
Empty weight: 6,800 kg (AR.125 engines) (13,900 lb)
Loaded weight: 9,300 kg (19,000 lb)
Max. takeoff weight: 10,505 kg (20,500 lb)
Powerplant: 3 × Piaggio P.X R.C.15 (or Alfa Romeo 125 R.C.35, Alfa Romeo 126 R.C.34 or Gnome-Rhône 14K) radial engines, 522 kW (670 hp) each

Maximum speed: 320-347 km/h (211 mph)
Range: 2,000 km ferry range, 430 km with 2,000 kg and 640 km endurance with the same load, max practical combat range 1,500 km. (1,240 mi)
Service ceiling: 7,000 m (23,000 ft)
Wing loading: 101 kg/m²
Power/mass: 4.9 hp/kg

Performance when fitted with Alfa Romeo 125 engines
Maximum speed 340 km/h at 4,000 m
Cruise speed 260 km.
Minimum speed 110 km/h.

Climb to
1,000 m (3,280 ft) in 4 min 15 s
3,000 m (9,840 ft) in 11 min 48 s
5,000 m (16,400 ft) in 20 min 36 s


6 × 7.7 mm (.303 in) Breda-SAFAT machine guns
Up to 2,000 kg (4,409 lb) of bombs
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