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Today in History

   An exceptional aircraft for its time, the Ansaldo S.V.A.5 was preceeded by the S.V.A.4 which was designed in 1917 by Umberto Savoia and Rodolfo Verduzio with Celestino Rosatelli. The principal difference between the S.V.A.4 and the S.V.A.5 was fuel capacity. With a larger fuel tank, the S.V.A.5 could remain in the air two hours longer than the S.V.A.4. In air trials these aircraft were fast and sturdy but lacked the manoeuvrability necessary in a good fighter plane. As a result, the S.V.A.5 entered service as a long range reconnaissance plane. Six squadrons of the Italian Air Service were equipped with the S.V.A.5 beginning in February 1918.
   Two-seater variants of the S.V.A.5 were also produced in 1917: the Ansaldo S.V.A.9, an unarmed trainer with dual controls, and the Ansaldo S.V.A.10, a reconnaissance plane that also served as a light bomber.
Italian Air Service: 87a
Ansaldo S.V.A.5 Specifications
Country: Italy
Manufacturer: Società Giovanni Ansaldo
Type: Reconnaissance
Entered Service: February 1918
Number Built: 2,000
Engine(s): SPA 6A 6-cylinder, liquid cooled inline, 220 hp
Wing Span: 29 ft 10¼ in (9.1 m)
Length: 26 ft 7 in (8.1 m)
Height: 10 ft 6 in (3.2 m)
Empty Weight:
Gross Weight: 2,315 lb (1,050 kg)
Max Speed: 143 mph (230 km/h)
Ceiling: 21,980 ft (6,700 m)
Endurance: 6 hours
Crew: 1
Armament: 2 machine guns
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