Tag Archives: Société Antoinette 8V

14 March 1908

A Voisin-Farman I bis at Le musée de l’Air et de l’Espace. (Wikipedia)
A Voisin-Farman I bis at Le musée de l’Air et de l’Espace. (Wikipedia)

14 March 1908: Henry Farman makes the the first flight in his modified Voisin-Farman I bis, an airplane built by the Appareils d’Aviation Les Frères Voisin, founded by brothers Gabriel and Charles Voisin at Billancourt, a suburb of Paris, France.

The Voisin-Farman I was a single-place, single-engine, two-bay biplane with the elevator forward and a “box kite” tail. It was 10.500 meters (34 feet 5.4 inches) long, with a wingspan of 10.000 meters (32 feet, 9.7 inches). The chord of each wing was 2.000 meters (6 feet, 6.7 inches), and vertical gap between the upper and lower wings was 1.500 meters (4 feet, 11.0 inches). There was no sweep or dihedral.

The complete airplane weighed 530 kilograms (1,169 pounds).

The Voisin-Farman I was modified. The wings’ dihedral was changed to improve stability and the span of the tail reduced. The Antoinette engine was replaced with a Renault rated at 50 horsepower, but was quickly changed back to the Antoinette. A tank containing crushed ice was added to the condensed steam cooling system, increasing the time the engine could be run. The modified airplane is known as the Voisin-Farman I bis (also known as the Henri Farman nº 1).

Two-view illustration of L’Aeroplane Henri Farmin no. 1, with dimensions. (l’Aerophile, 16* Annee, No. 3 1 February 1908, at Page 38/{BnF Gallica}

The airplane was powered by a steam-cooled, direct-injected, 487.14 cubic-inch-displacement (7.983 liter) Société Antoinette 8V 90° V-8 direct-drive engine producing 53 horsepower at 1,100 r.p.m. The engine turned a two-bladed pusher propeller. It was designed by Léon Levavasseur. The engine was 1.120 meters (3 feet, 8 inches) long, 0.630 meters (2 feet, 1 inch) wide and (0.540 meters (1 foot, 9 inches) high. It weighed 95 kilograms (209 pounds).

Charles Voisin and Henry Farman, 1907.
Charles Voisin and Henry Farman, 1907. (Unattributed)

© 2019, Bryan R. Swopes

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13 January 1908

Henry Farman and the Voisin-Farman I win the Grand Prix de l’aviation, for flying a circular course of more than one kilometer, 13 January 1908. (Library of Congress)
Henry Farman and the Voisin-Farman I win the Grand Prix de l’aviation, for flying a circular course of more than one kilometer, 13 January 1908. (Library of Congress)

13 January 1908: Henry Farman flew a circular one kilometer course at Issy-les-Moulineaux, France, in 1 minute, 28 seconds to win the Grand Prix de l’aviation, a prize of 50,000 francs, which had been offered by Henri Deutsch de la Meurthe in 1904.

Henri Deutsch de le Muerth, portrait by Leon Joseph Florentin Bonnat, 1913. (Musee Bonnat, Bayonne, France)
Henri Deutsch de le Muerthe, portrait by Leon Joseph Florentin Bonnat, 1913. (Musee Bonnat, Bayonne, France)

Henri Deutsch de le Muerthe (1846–1919) was a wealthy French businessman with a strong interest in aviation. He was one of the founders of the Aéro-Club de France. Along with Ernest Archdeacon, he sponsored a series of prizes to promote advances in flight.

The biplane was built by brothers Charles and Gabriel Voisin, and was very similar to the Voisin-Delagrange I which they had built several months earlier. Henry Farman had requested some slight modifications. He first flew the airplane 30 September 1907.

Farman had previously won the Coupe d’Aviation Ernest Archdeacon (Ernest Archdeacon Cup) when he flew his Henri Farman nº 1 a distance of approximately 771 meters (2,530 feet) in 52 seconds, 26 October 1907.

Two-view illustration of l’Aeroplane Henri Farman nº. 1, with dimensions. (l’Aérophile, 16º Année, No. 3, 1 February 1908, at Page 38)

The Henri Farman nº 1 (also known as the Voisin-Farman I) was a single-place, single-engine, two-bay biplane with the elevator forward and a “box kite” tail. It was 10.500 meters (34 feet 5.4 inches) long, with a wingspan of 10.000 meters (32 feet, 9.7 inches). The chord of each wing was 2.000 meters (6 feet, 6.7 inches), and vertical gap between the upper and lower wings was 1.500 meters (4 feet, 11.0 inches). There was no sweep or dihedral.

The complete airplane weighed 530 kilograms (1,169 pounds).

The airplane was powered by a steam-cooled, direct-injected, 487.14 cubic-inch-displacement (7.983 liter) Société Antoinette 8V 90° V-8 direct-drive engine ,designed by Léon Levavasseur. It produced 38 horsepower at 1,050 r.p.m. The engine turned a two-bladed pusher propeller, which had a diameter of 2.30 meters (7 feet, 6.6 inches). The engine was 1.120 meters (3 feet, 8 inches) long, 0.630 meters (2 feet, 1 inch) wide and (0.540 meters (1 foot, 9 inches) high. It weighed 95 kilograms (209 pounds).

Charles Voisin and Henry Farman, 1907
Charles Voisin and Henry Farman, 1907. (Unattributed)

© 2019, Bryan R. Swopes

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8 July 1908

Léon Delagrange with Thérèse Peltier, Milan, 8 July 1908. (Bibliothèque nationale de France)

8 July 1908: Thérèse Peltier (1873–1926) was the first woman to fly as a passenger aboard an airplane when she accompanied her friend, Ferdinand Léon Delagrange, aboard his Voisin biplane on a 200 meter (218 yards) flight at Milan, Italy.

She was taught to fly by Delagrange and in September 1908 made a solo flight at Turin.

Thérèse Peltier at Issy-les-Moulineaux, 17 September 1908. (Bibliothèque nationale de France)

The airplane was the first Voisin airplane, known as the Voisin-Delagrange I. It was built by Apparelles d’Aviation Les Frères Voisin, at Billancourt, France. It was a biplane with its elevator forward in a canard configuration and a “box-kite”-style rear stabilizer. The wings each had a span of 10 meters (32.8 feet) and a chord of 2 meters (6.56 feet). Its gross weight was 1,540 pounds (699 kilograms).

The airplane was powered by a steam-cooled, direct-injected, 493.41 cubic-inch (8.086 liter) Société Antoinette 8V 90° V-8 engine producing 49.2 horsepower at 1,100 r.p.m. The direct-drive engine turned a two-bladed, fixed-pitch propeller with a diameter of 7 feet, 6 inches (2.286 meters) in a pusher configuration. The Antoinette V-8 weighed 265 pounds (120 kilograms).

The Voisin-Delagrange I had a maximum speed of 45 miles per hour (72 kilometers per hour).

After her friend, Léon Delagrange, was killed 4 January 1910 when the wing of his Blériot XI failed near Croix d’Hins, Peltier never flew again.

Léon Delagrange’s Voisin biplane in flight, 6 September 1908. (J. Theodoresco, Paris)

© 2018, Bryan R. Swopes

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