Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Germany - 1918 Albatros C.XV

The Last Albatross Reconnaissance Aircraft

This post brings the history of Albatross reconnaissance aircraft to its end. The war ended and so did the need for military aircraft. Luckily the Albatros C.XV was used in civilian aviation.

The Albatros C.XV was a German military reconnaissance aircraft developed during World War I. It was essentially a refinement of the C.XII put into production in 1918. The war ended before any examples became operational, however some found their way into civilian hands and flew as transport aircraft in peacetime under the factory designation L 47. Others saw service with the air forces of Russia, Turkey, and Latvia.


  1. Albatros C.XV. (2010, May 4). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 00:47, July 17, 2010, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Albatros_C.XV&oldid=360031378
  2. Taylor, Michael J. H. (1989). Jane's Encyclopedia of Aviation. London: Studio Editions. pp. 53.


kingsleypark said...

A wee bit of a surprise to see such a large engine block compared to the C.XII. It detracts from the clean lines of the earlier design although I see from the stats that the C.XV could carry a heavier pay load. Was that down to the C.XII having a water cooled engine and the C.XV not?

W. I. Boucher said...

Actually the Albatros C.X, C.XII, and the C.XV used the same Mercedes D.IVa, 260 hp (190 kW) water-cooled inline 6 cylinder engine. The CXV had a slightly longer wingspan,but the same wing area as the C.XII.

The only Albatros which did not use an inline water cooled was the D.XI.

The Angry Lurker said...

It's a bit of a beast that engine, nice lines though, looks like a cigar.

W. I. Boucher said...

@ Fran, The problem with shark shaped airframes is: Where do you put the radiator for the water cooled inline engine? They tried mounting them on the sides of the fuselage, but they were not effective. They tried on the upper wing and ended up scalding the air crew when the wing was hit. The only place it seemed to be effective was mounted above the engine. I guess they figured if it got hit there the pilot had more to worry about than a stream of boiling water.

The exhaust stack was problematic too. When it was mounted to exhaust to the side the fumes would be drawn into the cabin. Which is one reason you see such prodigious manifolds.

But yes it did have clean lines.