Gloster Meteor

Type: Single Set Jet fighter (later trainer, Photo Reconnaissance, Nightfighter, drone and target tug variants.)
Origin: Gloster (later Hawker Siddeley)
Models: See variant list.
First Flight:
    Prototype: March 5, 1943
    NF.11: May 31, 1950
Squadron Delivery: (F.1) July 12, 1944
Final Delivery: (T.7) July 1954
Number Produced: 3,947

Meteor I
  Model: Rolls-Royce Welland
  Type: Centrifugal Turbojet
  Number: Two    Thrust: 1,700 lb.

Meteor F.3
  Model: Rolls-Royce Derwent 1
  Type: Centrifugal Turbojet
  Number: Two    Thrust: 2,000 lb.

Meteor Mk. 4
  Model: Rolls-Royce Derwent 5
  Type: Centrifugal Turbojet
  Number: Two    Thrust: 3,500 lb.

Meteor F.8
  Model: Rolls-Royce Derwent 8
  Type: Centrifugal Turbojet
  Number: Two    Thrust: 3,600 lb.

Wing span:
    Mk. 4, 7, 8, 9 and derivatives: 37 ft. 2 in. (11.3m)
    Mk. 1-3, 10-14: 43 ft. (13.1m)
    Mk. 1-4: 41 ft. 4 in. (12.6m)
    Mk. 7, 9: 43 ft. 6 in. (13.25m)
    Mk. 8: 44 ft. 7 in. (13.59m)
    Mk. 10: 44 ft. 3 in.
    Mk. 11-13: 48 ft. 6 in. (14.78m)
    Mk. 14: 49 ft. 11.5 in. (15.23m)
    Mk. 1-7, 10: 13 ft. (3.96m)
    Mk. 8, 9, 11-14: 13 ft. 10 in. (4.22m)
Wing Surface Area: N/A

    Mk. 1: 8,140 lb. (3693 kg)
    Mk. 4: 9,980 lb. (4526 kg)
    Mk. 7: 10,540 lb. (4780 kg)
    Mk. 8: 10,626 lb. (4820 kg)
    Mk. 9: 10,790 lb. (4895 kg)
    Mk. 11-14: about 11,900 lb. (5400 kg)
    Mk. 1: 13,800 lb. (6260 kg)
    Mk. 4: 15,175 lb. (6885 kg)
    Mk. 7: 17,600 lb. (7984 kg)
    Mk. 8: 19,100 lb. (8664 kg)
    Mk. 9, 10: 15,660 lb. and 15,330 lb.
    Mk. 11: 22,000 lb. (9979 kg)
    Mk. 12-14: about 20,500 lb. (9300 kg)
Maximum Speed:
    Mk. 1: 410 mph (660 km/h)
    Mk. 4, 8, 9: 585-595 mph (940-958 km/h)
    Mk. 7, 10-14: 579-585 mph (931-940 km/h)
Initial Climb:
    Mk. 1: 2,155 ft/min (657 m/min)
    Mk. 4-10: 7,000-7,600 ft/min (2130-2315 m/min)
    Mk. 11-14: 6,000 ft/min (1830 m/min)
Service Ceiling:
    Typical: 40,000-44,000 ft. (12,192-13,410m)
    F.8: 50,000 ft. (15,240m)
Range (Internal Fuel, Typical):
    About 1,000 miles at altitude.

Mk. 1-4, 8, 9: Four 20mm Hispano Cannon on sides of nose.
Mk. 11-14: Four 20mm Hispano Cannon in outer wings.
Other Marks: Normally none.

Most Meteors had the capability of being modified to carry two 1,000 lb. bombs, eight rockets or various other offensive stores. However, few Meteors actually revieved these modifications except for some F.8 fighters in non-British service.

Variants List:
Meteor I: First production batch of fighters delivered to Squadron 616 on July 12, 1944.
F.3: First major production version. Included extra tankage, sliding canopy and on the last 15 longer nacelles.
Mark 4: More powerful engines, larger nacelles and clipped wing tips. In 1945 set speed record of 606 mph, increased to 616 mph the following year.
T.7: Tandem seat trainer with canopy hinged to right.
PR.10: Unarmed reconnaissance.
F.8: fighter variant introducing a redesigned tail, more powerful engines, greater load, improved cockpit, and a Martin-Baker ejection seat. Later 8's had enlarged engine inlets, spring-tab ailerons, and an improved canopy. The F.8 was the most numerous variant built and was widely exported after the war.
NF.11-14: Tandem seat nightfighters with AI. 10 or APS-57 (U.S. Built) radar. Armstong Whitworth built these variants, producing 547 aircraft.

Major Conversions:
NF(T).14: Navigation Trainer.
U.15, U.16 and U.21: unmanned, remotely piloted aircraft.
TT.20: target-tug.

Click to enlarge

3-View Illustration

    Designed by George Carter to meet specification F.9/40, the Gloster G.41 was the first Allied jet combat aircraft. Originally to be called the Thunderbolt, the design was renamed when this name was assigned to the P-47. Development was protracted due to aerodynamic and control situations and several different engines were tried. Sixteen Meteor I's entered squadron service on July 12, 1944.
    The RAF was reluctant to allow thier new jet fighter to engage in combat over the continent for fear of a shot down example falling into German hands. With these restrictions the Meteor was limited to British airspace where it found itself adept at downing V-1's. The types first engagement was less than perfect. A Meteor flown by F/O Dean intercepted a V-1 but his guns jammed. Taking a great risk, Dean manuevered his aircraft beside the V-1 and flipped the bomb with his wingtip, causing the missile to crash.
    Although initially underpowered, engine development by Rolls-Royce transformed the Meteor into a capable multi-role aircraft with power output more than doubling by the introduction of the F.8. The Meteor went on to serve in numerous Air Forces around the world.

Gunston, Bill - The Encyclodepia of the Worlds Combat aircraft, 1976, Chartwell Books, Inc., New York
Green, William - War Planes Of The Second World War - Fighters - Vol. 2, 1961, Hanover House, New York