World War II Vehicles, Tanks and Airplanes, picture of P-51 Mustang
World War II Vehicles, Tanks and Airplanes, picture of T-34/85
World War II Vehicles, Tanks and Airplanes, picture of Fw-190
World War II Vehicles, Tanks and Airplanes, picture of Churchill
wwiivehicles.com ©2016
Search:
France's flagFrance's Aircraft Roundel Marking

France's Dewoitine D.520 fighter

Photos

Dewoitine D.520 fighter:
France's Dewoitine D.520 fighter
Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook
Dewoitine D.520 fighter:
France's Dewoitine D.520 fighter
Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook
Dewoitine D.520 fighter:
France's Dewoitine D.520 fighter
Dewoitine D.520 fighter:
France's Dewoitine D.520 fighter

Design

The design of the Dewoitine D.520 was first started in November 1936 as a private venture by Emile Dewoitine.2,4 It was to meet a 1936 requirement for a single engine fighter.3 On April 3, 1938, the French government accepted the design.4

The cockpit was located well back and caused problems with landing and taxiing.1

The construction was all metal stressed skin.3

Compared With a Bf.109 E-3

A Messerschmitt Bf.109 E-3 was forced down in French territory in early 1940 and this was compared with a D.520.4 It was found that the D.520 was slower but more maneuverable than the Bf. 109.4

Prototype

The prototype was flown by Marcel Doret on October 2, 1938.1,2,3,4 The engine overheated and he was unable to get up to 325 mph as was expected.4 He forgot to lower the undercarriage during a landing and wrecked the prototype in 1938.1 The next prototypes were flown in January and May 1939.3

Production

There were 200 ordered by May 1939.1,4 This was later increased to 710.1,4 The Vichy increased it to 740.1
There were orders placed for over 2,300 by late 1939.3

The first production model was flown on November 2, 1939.2

By April 1940 the orders for the D.520 stood at 2,320.4 They were to be manufactured at a rate of 350 per month.4

In May 1940 production was ramped up to ten per day.3 437 were completed by the armistice.3

Vichy France then built 478 from July 1941 to 1943.3

  • Prototypes: 33
  • Dewoitine D.520: 7754, 9153
  • Manufacturer: SNCAM4
  • Production:
    • ? - January 1940: 134
    • February - April 1940: 1264
    • May - June 1940: 3114
    • Vichy France: Summer 1941 - December 19424

Variants

  • Dewoitine D.520-01: Prototype.3 Had Hispano-Suiza 12Y-21 engine (890 HP).3 A two bladed wooden propeller with fixed pitch.3 The radiators were in the wings.3
  • Dewoitine D.520-02: Prototype.3 Had radiator under the fuselage.3,4 Tail surfaces were made larger.3 It had a three bladed electrically controlled propellar.3 The canopy was redesigned.3,4 The landing gear was altered.4
  • Dewoitine D.520:
  • Dewoitine D.521: Conversion with the Rolls-Royce Merlin III (1,030 HP) engine.3 Had two 20 mm cannons in the wings.3 In February 1940 was its first flight.3
  • Dewoitine D.524: Had Hispano-Suiza 12Z (1,200 HP) engine.3

Usage

Used in combat by Bulgaria (150), France, Italy (72), and Romania (96).1,3

Battle of France

There were only 36 D.520s operational by May 10, 1940.4

First Use

Only 36 Dewoitine D.520s were delivered to one groupe de chasse, the GC 1/3, by May 1940.2,3 This groupe shot down three Hs 126s and one He 111 on May 13, 1940.2

43 Dewoitine D.520s were then delivered to the GC II/3, GC II/7, GC III/3, and GC III/6.2

52 were then delivered to the Aéronavale escadrilles AC 1, 2, 3, and 4 before France surrendered.2

It was clamed that the D.520 shot down 114 enemy planes by the time of the armistice.3 The D.520s also lost 85 of their own.3

Germany

After the surrender of France, D.520s were used by the Germans as trainers.1,3

In 1942 the Germans seized 411 (2462) D.520s and passed them onto Axis countries.1

Vichy France

Were used as combat aircraft.1 235 D.520s were used by the Vichy air force in France and 202 were used in Africa.2

Ace

Adjutant Pierre Le Gloan of GC III/6 shot down 18 aircraft.2 He shot an additional 4 in other aircraft.2

After World War II

A few of the D.520s that remained were converted to two seat trainers.4 The last of the D.520s were withdrawn from service in September 1953.4 These were a part of the Escadrille de Présentation of the Armée de l'Air.4

Specifications

  Dewoitine D.520
Type Fighter1,3,4,5
Crew 11,3,4
Engine (Type) Hispano-Suiza5
Hispano-Suiza 12Y 45 piston1,3
Hispano-Suiza 12 Y4
Cylinders Inline1, V 123,4
Cooling Liquid4,5
Net HP 9103,4, 9205, 9351
Supercharger Szydlowski1
Propeller blades 33
Dimensions  
Span 33' 5"4,5, 33' 5.5"3, 34'1
10.2 m1,3
Length 27'5, 28'1, 28' 8.5"3, 28' 9"4
8.6 m1, 8.76 m3
Height 8'1, 8' 5"3,4, 8' 6"5
2.56 m3, 2.57 m1
Wing area 172 ft2 1
15.97 m2 1
Weight  
Empty 4,479 lb1, 4,612 lb3
2,036 kg1, 2,092 kg3
Loaded 4,850 lb5, 5,889 lb1
2,677 kg1
Maximum load 6,129 lb3,4
2,780 kg3
Performance  
Speed 332 mph1, 340 mph5
535 kph1
Speed at sea level 280 mph3
450 kph3
Speed @ 19,685' /
6,000 m
329 mph3,4
529 kph3
Cruising speed 230 mph3
370 kph3
Climb 2,362'/minute3
720 m/minute3
Climb to 13,120' /
4,000 m
5 minutes3, 5 minutes 48 seconds1
Climb to 26,000' 12' 53"4
Service ceiling 36,090'3,4, 39,440'1
10,500 m1, 11,000 m3
Range 620 miles3,4, 950 miles1
890 km1, 998 km3
Maximum range 777 miles3
1,250 km3
Armament 1: 20 mm4
4: MG4
Propeller hub 1: 20 mm HS 404 rapid fire cannon1
1: 20 mm3
Ammunition 60 rounds1
Wings 4: 7.5 mm MAC 34 M39 MG1
4: 7.5 mm MG3
Ammunition 675 rounds each1
  Dewoitine D.520S (first 558 aircraft2)
Type Fighter2
Crew 12
Engine (Type) Hispano-Suiza 12Y45 piston2
Cylinders Inline2
Cooling  
Net HP 9302
Supercharger  
Propeller blades  
Dimensions  
Span 33' 5.5"2
10.2 m2
Length 28' 8.75"2
8.76 m2
Height 8' 5 1/8"2
2.57 m2
Wing area 171.7 ft2 2
15.95 m2 2
Weight  
Empty 4,685 lb2
2,125 kg2
Loaded 5,897 lb2
2,6752
Maximum load  
Performance  
Speed  
Speed @ 18,045' /
5,500 m
332 mph2
535 kph2
Cruising speed  
Climb  
Climb to 13,125' /
4,000 m
5.82 minutes2
Service ceiling 33,630'2
10,250 m2
Range 553 miles2
890 km2
Armament  
Propeller hub 1: 20 mm HS4042
Wings 4: 7.5 mm MAC 1934 M39 MG2

Sources:

  1. Aircraft of World War II, General Editor: Jim Winchester, 2004
  2. Fighting Aircraft of World War II, Editor: Karen Leverington, 1995
  3. Aircraft of WWII, Stewart Wilson, 1998
  4. World War II Airplanes Volume 1, Enzo Angelucci, Paolo Matricardi, 1976
  5. Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook, Ensign L. C. Guthman, 1943
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site