FLIGHT OF H.M. AIRSHIP R.101 TO INDIA
NOTES FOR PRESS USE
|The flightof H.M.Airship R.101 to India
via Egypt - the first flight of an Airship to either country is being undertaken
as part of the Air Ministry's development policy for Airships with the object
of the testing out the behviour of an Airship on a long distance flight,
more espescially under semi tropical conditions.
The flight is an experimental one, and in thie respect it should not be forgotten that when the Airship was designed she was approximatly twice the size of the largest Airship then built, and incorporates many novel features.
The R.101 was designed by Lieut-Col. V.C. Richmond, Assistant Director of Airship Development (Techinical) and was built at the Royal Airship Works, Cardington, Bedford. She is the largest airship in the world have ing a gas capacity of approximatley 5 1/2 million cubic feet.
Since the Airship carried out Home trials an extra section has been embodied in the ship, which has increased her lenght by 45ft and her gas capacity by about 500,000 cubic ft The principle dimensions now are :- Lenght 777ft, maximum diameter nearly 132 feet and maximum height about 140 feet. As a result of the inesrtion of the extra bay, and by alterations to the parachte netting which enabled each gasbag to hold a greater volume of gas, her gross lift is now approximatly 165 tons.
She is engined by 5 Beardmore "Tornado" 585hp compression ignition heavy fuel oil engines. They are carried in 5 seperate power cars. Two of the engines are of reversable type.
R.101 has the most spacious passenger accommodation of any airship ever yet built. It consists of a large Saloon lounge(Lenght 33 feet, Width 62 feet) which stretches across the hull,with a raised promenade at either end from which excellent views can be obtained; a separate dining room with seating capacity for 50 persons, a fire-proof smoke room (a feature which has not been installed in any other airship and has been made possible by the use of heavy fuel oil engines), and roomy passengers cabins. There is also an electrically equipped kitchen and good lavatory accommodation.
The colour scheme is white and gold, while the curtains are of cambridge blue.
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