The Avro CF-100 Canuck was ready for its very first launch flight in 1950. While some cheered the fighter jet’s first flight, others were watching the aircraft for ways it could be improved. What resulted from their analysis was the creation of an airplane like no other!
The Royal Canadian Air Force quickly put together a report detailing how the design of Avro CF-100 Canuck could be improved upon. It was titled RCAF’s Final Report of the All-Weather Interceptor Requirements Team, also referred to as the Avro Arrow. Once the engineers had it in hand, they went straight to work!
Introducing the Clunk
After Canadian leaders caught wind of the Soviet Union’s new aircraft, they immediately got to work. They launched the A. V. Roe Canada Limited, a company that is now known as Avro Canada. They employed a group of engineers that were committed to coming up with something even better, something that would top the Soviets.
What they came up with was better than the Canadian leaders could have ever hoped for. In the 1950s, they built the Avro CF-100 Canuck, a fighter jet-like no other. It was nicknamed the Clunk, but don’t let that fool you into thinking it was a piece of junk. The new aircrafts remained active in the Canadian military until the 1980s.
The Soviets Pull Ahead
As the Canadians were working on the Clunk, the Soviets also had something new in the works. In 1952 the Royal Canadian Air Force received new intelligence that the Soviets were yet again one step ahead.
As it turned out, they were working on another aircraft, one that was rumored to be a highly destructive beast that could wipe the Canadians off the map in a matter of seconds. While the threat was real, the Soviets would need another seven years to get it ready. Canada still had some time to catch up, and they used it wisely.
The Avro Arrow
The improved design was referred to as the Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow, a name it certainly lived up to. With delta wings and a spearhead configuration, it flew like no other aircraft had at that time. Not only was it fast, but it was intense and deadly as well.
When the original design was improved upon, engineers focused on both strength and speed. Not only could the Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow reach heights above 50,000 feet, but it could fly at Mach 2 speeds or 1500 miles per hour.
During this time, technology was nowhere near what it is today. They didn’t have computer simulation models to test their work. Instead, engineers had to create several prototypes of the models to be sure the aircraft functioned properly and was safe.
Between the years 1953 and 1957, nine prototypes of the Avro Arrow were generated. If they hadn’t taken these steps, it would have been impossible to foresee whether their improvements were successful. Each prototype was made with the proper specification, but they were scaled down in size to reduce costs.