The Pegasus turbofan engine, developed by Rolls-Royce, powered the innovative Hawker Siddeley 'Harrier' jets introduced in 1959. Evolving from the 'Orpheus' engine, the Pegasus engine's unique feature was its ability to redirect thrust for vertical lift through pivot nozzles.
During the Cold War, the concept of fighter jets with vertical takeoff and landing capabilities gained prominence. The British Harrier jets, driven by the Pegasus engines, answered this need by allowing rapid response to unforeseen threats posed by Soviet forces in Western Europe.
Hawker Siddeley's "HS.1205" project further exemplified this concept with a supersonic fighter jet using Pegasus engines. Although not a true V/STOL aircraft, the HS.1205 featured short takeoff and vertical landing capabilities, making it adaptable to damaged or small airfields. This project, initiated in 1976, showcased a modern design akin to the F-16 Fighting Falcon, underlining the success of Pegasus engines in shaping military aviation.
Years of Service: 1976
Manufacturer: Hawker Siddeley UK
Carrier: UK (obsolete)
Air-to-air combat, fighter
The general ability to actively attack other aircraft of similar form and function, usually using guns, missiles and/or airborne missiles.
The ability to intercept incoming airborne threats with high performance, usually speed and rate of climb.
X-Plane (development, prototyping, tech demos)
Aircraft designed for prototyping, technology demonstration, or research/data collection.
Length: 54.0 feet (16.45m)
Width/span: 36.9 feet (11.25m)
MTOW: 30,865 lbs (14,000 kg)
Installed: 1 x Rolls-Royce "Pegasus" 11D-43 afterburner engine producing 22,050 pounds of dry thrust and 30,850 pounds of reheated thrust.
Maximum speed: 1,314 km/h (2,115 km/h | 1,142 knots)
Maximum: 36,089 feet (11,000 m | 7 km)
Standard (fixed, forward firing):
2 x 27mm internal automatic cannons under the wings (one cannon per wing main aircraft member).
2 x AIM-9 Sidewinder Short-Range Air-to-Air Missiles (SRAAM) mounted on wingtip brackets.
2 x AIM-9 "Sidewinder" SRAAM or conventionally dropped bombs under the wing.