DOFLUG D-3802 History

Following the production of several hundred units of the EKW D-3801 single-seat, single-engine monoplane fighter (based in the pre-World War 2 French Morane-Saulnier "MS. 412" fighter design), the Swiss took to further development of another French-originated system in the Morane-Saulnier "MS. 450". As the French were forced to end their involvement in the MS. 450 program due to the June 1940 surrender at the hands of the invading Germans, Dornier-Werke AG, the Swiss-based arm of the same German company that produced the wartime Do 17 medium bomber and other solutions for the Luftwaffe, headed development of the new fighter - designated "D-3802" - in 1942.

Like other modern fighter mounts, the D-3802 was given all-metal construction with stressed skinning, a wholly-enclosed cockpit space, and fully-retractable undercarriage all centered around a streamlined, single-seat, single-engine monoplane configuration. Armament was similar to the proven Luftwaffe Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighter seeing a 20mm automatic cannon buried in the engine block and firing through the propeller hub at the nose. In addition to this, the fighter carried two machine guns to each wing mainplane for a formidable offensive punch.

The mainplanes were mounted low and ahead of midships. The cockpit sat just slightly ahead of center mass and aft of the engine installation at the nose. The D-3802 sported a canopy not unlike that of the German Bf 109, lightly-framed and boxy, while views to the rear were somewhat obstructed by the raised fuselage spine. The tail unit was capped by a single vertical plane with a pair of forward-set horizontal planes for the needed control. The undercarriage was of the typical "tail-dragger" arrangement, giving a pronounced "nose up" attitude of the aircraft when on the ground.

A first-flight of the D-3802 prototype was recorded on September 29th, 1944 and this form carried the Saurer YS-2 12-cylinder liquid-cooled engine of 1,250 horsepower - the engine a licensed, local copy of an original Hispano-Suiza design. From this spawned eleven pre-series airframes which featured reduced wingspans as well as modified outer panels. By this time, the armament suite was beefed up to encompass 20mm automatic cannons at each wing member in place of the original's machine guns. The resulting design (built by DOFLUG at Altenrhein in 1946) was designated as "D-3802A" and a first-flight was had on May 18th, 1946, the aircraft proving capable of exceeding 400 miles-per-hour.

By this time, however, World War 2 in Europe had ended in May of 1945 with Germany's formal surrender and, with an all-modern fighter solution no longer needed in the original numbers envisioned by the Swiss Air Force, the D-3802 existed only through the single prototype and eleven pre-series aircraft completed. These served with Fliegerstaffel 17 until retired in 1956.

At the same time that the D-3802 was seeing development, DOFLUG also funneled resources into a related variant known as the "D-3803". However, this aircraft also had its development cycle cut short by the end of the war and the subsequent glut of wartime surplus North American P-51D "Mustang" fighters becoming available worldwide - which the Swiss Air Force ended up purchasing in place of a local design. Thus ended the story of the D-3802 (and D-3803 for that matter).

DOFLUG D-3802 Specification

BASICS

Service Year

1946

Origin

Switzerland

Status

RETIRED

Not in Service.

Crew

1

Production

12

MANUFACTURER(S)

Dornier-Werke AG (DOGLUF) - Switzerland

OPERATORS

Switzerland

ROLES

Air-to-Air Combat, Fighter

General ability to actively engage other aircraft of similar form and function, typically through guns, missiles, and/or aerial rockets.

X-Plane (Developmental, Prototype, Technology Demonstrator)

Aircraft developed for the role of prototyping, technology demonstration, or research / data collection.

NOTABLE QUALITIES

RUGGED AIRFRAME

Inherent ability of airframe to take considerable damage.

HIGH-ALTITUDE PERFORMANCE

Can reach and operate at higher altitudes than average aircraft of its time.

BAILOUT PROCESS

Manual process of allowing its pilot and / or crew to exit in the event of an airborne emergency.

CREWSPACE PRESSURIZATION

Supports pressurization required at higher operating altitudes for crew survival.

ENCLOSED CREWSPACE(S)

Features partially- or wholly-enclosed crew workspaces.

RETRACTABLE UNDERCARRIAGE

Features retracting / retractable undercarriage to preserve aerodynamic efficiency.

DIMENSIONS & WEIGHTS

Length

30. 5 ft

(9. 31 m)

Width/Span

32. 9 ft

(10. 02 m)

Height

11. 0 ft

(3. 35 m)

Empty Wgt

5,512 lb

(2,500 kg)

MTOW

8,609 lb

(3,905 kg)

Wgt Diff

+3,097 lb

(+1,405 kg)

MAINPLANE STRUCTURE

monoplane / low-mounted / straight

Monoplane

Design utilizes a single primary wing mainplane; this represent the most popular mainplane arrangement.

Low-Mounted

Mainplanes are low-mounted along the sides of the fuselage.

Straight

The planform involves use of basic, straight mainplane members.

(Structural descriptors pertain to the base DOFLUG D-3802 production variant)

POWER & PERFORMANCE

Installed:

1 x Saurer (Hispano-Suiza) YS-2 12-cylinder, liquid-cooled inline piston engine developing 1,250 horsepower driving a three-bladed propeller unit at the nose.

Max Speed

391 mph

(630 kph | 340 kts)

Cruise Speed

332 mph

(535 kph | 289 kts)

Max. Speed Diff

+59 mph

(+95 kph | 51 kts)

Ceiling

30,003 ft

(9,145 m | 6 mi)

Range

404 mi

(650 km | 1,204 nm)

Rate-of-Climb

2,795 ft/min

(852 m/min)

MACH Regime (Sonic)

Sub

Trans

Super

Hyper

HiHyper

ReEntry

RANGES (MPH) Subsonic: <614mph | Transonic: 614-921 | Supersonic: 921-3836 | Hypersonic: 3836-7673 | Hi-Hypersonic: 7673-19180 | Reentry: >19030

ARMAMENT

PROTOTYPE:1 x 20mm Hispano-Suiza HS-404 automatic cannon firing through the propeller hub. 4 x Machine guns in wings (two guns to a wing member). PRE-SERIES:1 x 20mm Hispano-Suiza HS-404 automatic cannon firing through the propeller hub. 2 x 20mm ispano-Suiza HS-404 automatic cannons in wings (one cannon to a wing member).

Supported Types

(Not all ordnance types may be represented in the showcase above)

HARDPOINTS

Hardpoint Mountings: 0

VARIANTS

D-3802 - Base Series Designation; single flyable prototype and eleven pre-series aircraft completed. D-3803 - Offshoot variant of the D-3802 developed concurrently; revised fuselage with reworked canopy; fitted with Saurer YS-3 engine of 1,430 horsepower; 3 x 20mm cannon armament; not selected for production.

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