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Avro Vulcan first prototype VX770. Designed by Roy Chadwick (who lost his life in a flying accident in 1947), 770 first flew in 1952 piloted by Roly Falk. The proposed Bristol Olympus two-spool turbojets were not ready so 770 was initially powered by four Rolls Royce Avon turbojets which were substituted with more powerful Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire turbojets the following year. Though obviously a Vulcan, 770 looks a little strange to a generation used to Mk 2s with its straight delta wing and lack of a bomb-aimer's blister below the cabin. All later Vulcans had the bomb-aimer's blister and whilst the second prototype and first production Mk 1s had straight wings, these were modified with the 'Phase 2' wing. The slide used to demonstrate the planforms at the presentation (right) is incorrect. What is indicated as 'MK 1' is the prototype/early Mk 1 wing and what is marked as 'MK 1A' is the definitive Mk 1 or 'Phase 2' wing. Many B1s were converted to B1A standard. 770 was subsequently used by Rolls-Royce as a Conway test bed until its loss at an air display at RAF Syerston in 1958.

Paul O'Gorman collection. © Thought to be BAE Systems. Small image Crown Copyright                   

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