Contributor: C. Peter Chen
ww2dbaseDesigned by Alessandro Marchetti, the S.55 flying boat first took flight in Aug 1924. They were set apart from other contemporary aircraft by each having two hulls, with the pilot and crew in one and passengers and cargo in another. Their engine replacement was also interesting, each having two engines mounted high above the wings, back-to-back, rotating in opposite directions. In 1926, the S.55P prototype aircraft set 14 world records, including speed, altitude, altitude, and distance with a payload. The design entered production later in 1926, and by Feb 1927 had already joined the short list of aircraft that were able to make the cross-Atlantic journey. In the late 1920s and early 1930s, many S.55 aircraft were used by Italy to showcase its technological might. In the mid-1930s, they were used as naval reconnaissance aircraft, patrol aircraft, and light bombers by Italy and Germany. By the time the European War began in Sep 1939, however, they had already become obsolete, though many remained in Italian and German service in rear areas. Nations friendly with Italy during WW2, such as Spain and Romania, also operated a number of them.
ww2dbaseDuring the design's production life 200 examples were built.
Last Major Revision: Mar 2011
|Machinery||Two Isotta-Fraschini Asso 750V engines rated at 880hp each|
|Armament||4x7.7mm machine guns, 1 torpedo or 2,000kg of bombs|
|Wing Area||93.00 m²|
|Weight, Empty||5,750 kg|
|Weight, Maximum||8,260 kg|
|Speed, Maximum||279 km/h|
|Service Ceiling||5,000 m|
|Range, Normal||3,500 km|
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Lt. Gen. Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller, at Guadalcanal
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