Nieuport 11

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Nieuport never. 11C.1
Nieuport-Macchi 11000 (Ni 11) French First World War single seat fighter colored drawing.jpg
Type: Fighter plane
Design country:

FranceFrance France


Societé Anonyme des Établissements Nieuport

First flight:

July 1915



Production time:


Number of pieces:

approx. 7,200 (with license builds)

The Nieuport 11 , also known as Nieuport Bébé , known by the British as Nieuport Baby or Nieuport Scout , was a French fighter aircraft developed in 1915 by the Societé Anonyme des Établissements Nieuport and used in the First World War .


The biplane designed by Gustave Delage was a scaled-down version of the two-seat Nieuport 10 fighter aircraft and was based on the design of a racing aircraft with an 80-hp Gnôme rotary engine , which was originally designed for the Gordon Bennet competition , which was canceled when the war broke out in 1914 .

The aircraft was a light biplane and was intended to replace the outdated Morane-Saulnier L and LA in the fight against the so-called " Fokker Plage " (Fokker Scourge): In 1915, the German air forces with the Fokker monoplane had won air control over the western front. The main advantage of the Fokker was the synchronized machine gun that could fire through the propeller circle and thus enabled the pilot to aim directly at the enemy with the control stick without being hindered by the propeller. The Allies did not yet have this technology, so the Lewis or Hotchkiss machine gun was mounted on the upper wing. This was just as effective as the Fokker MG, but had to be reloaded again and again because of a magazine with only 47 cartridges. Some aircraft were also equipped with Le Prieur missiles to counter balloons.

The Nieuport 11 had a 59 kW (80 hp) paid Gnôme-Rhône - rotary engine . Its two wings were connected by V-handles. The lower wing was offset backwards and much narrower; it measured only about half the area of ​​the upper wing. In contrast to the Fokker monoplane, which was controlled by wing twisting, Delage used ailerons.


The first machine as Nieuport Nie. 11C.1 (C = Combat, 1 = single-seater) was delivered to the Aéronautique Militaire on January 5, 1916 ; this month the operational strength had already reached 90 machines. The British Army and Navy - Royal Flying Corps and Royal Naval Air Service  - now also use Nieuport 11.

Due to its climbing ability, speed and maneuverability, the "Bébé" soon proved to be superior to the Fokker monoplane in aerial combat and was able to outmaneuver them easily. With the French Nieuport 10 and 11 and the British Airco DH2 and FE2b , the Allies regained their tactical superiority in the air in the spring of 1916, which was particularly important on the contested front sections near Verdun and on the Somme in the west. The Nieuport 11 was even used on the Dardanelles .

Numerous successful fighter pilots achieved their first aerial victories on the Nieuport 11, including the French Georges Guynemer , the Russian Alexander Alexandrowitsch Kasakow , the Belgian Willy Coppens , the American Raoul Lufbery the Italian Francesco Baracca , the British Albert Ball and the Australian Roderic Stanley Dallas . Her service with the Escadrille La Fayette , a squadron of the French Air Force (Aéronautique Militaire), which mainly consisted of American volunteers, also became known.

Countries of operation

The Nieuport 11 was manufactured in large numbers and used in many countries. Dux in Russia and Aeronautica Macchi in Italy (656 pieces as Nieuport 11000) as well as manufacturers in Spain and the Netherlands produced the machine under license. A captured Nieuport 11 also served as a model for German manufacturers, including the Siemens-Schuckert DI , Euler DI , Schütte-Lanz DI and the successful Albatros D.III .

The aircraft was delivered to the Air Forces of Belgium , Czechoslovakia , France , Italy , the Netherlands , Romania , Russia , Serbia ( Yugoslavia ), Siam (two planes), Ukraine (one plane) and the United Kingdom .

The Nieuport 11 in a performance comparison

Surname country Motor power Max. speed Takeoff mass MG Summit height
Nieuport 11 FranceFrance France 80 hp 156 km / h 480 kg 1 4700 m
Morane-Saulnier N. FranceFrance France 110 hp 144 km / h 510 kg 1 4000 m
Fokker E.III German EmpireThe German Imperium German Empire 100 hp 140 km / h 610 kg 1 3600 m
Airco DH2 United Kingdom 1801United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland United Kingdom 100 hp 150 km / h 654 kg 1 4265 m
Royal Aircraft Factory FE2 United Kingdom 1801United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland United Kingdom 160 hp 147 km / h 935 kg 1 3353 m
Albatros DI German EmpireThe German Imperium German Empire 160 hp 175 km / h 898 kg 2 6000 m

End of use

The improved Nieuport 16 with a more powerful engine and synchronized MG replaced the Nieuport 11 from the summer of 1916; these have now been converted with Clerget 7Z engines and used as training aircraft. In Italy, the Nieuport 11 remained in service until the summer of 1917.

Technical specifications

Parameter Data
crew 1 pilot
length 5.64 m
span 7.52 m
height 2.45 m
Wing area 13.30 m²
Empty mass 320 kg
Takeoff mass 480 kg
Engine 9-cylinder rotary engine Gnome-Rhône  9J with 59 kW (80 PS)
Armament Hotchkiss or Lewis MG 7.7 mm (.303 inch)
Top speed 156 km / h
Climbing time to 1000 m 3:47 min
Climbing time to 2000 m 8:19 min
Ascent time to 3000 m 14:51 min
Climbing time to 4000 m 28:02 min
Service ceiling 4700 m
Flight duration 2:30 h
number of pieces approx. 7200

See also



  • Enzo Angelucci, Paolo Matricardi: The planes. From the beginning to the First World War. Falken-Verlag, Wiesbaden 1976, ISBN 3-8068-0391-9 , ( Falken manual in color ).
  • Jon Guttman: Nieuport 11/16 Bébé vs Fokker monoplane - Western Front 1916. (Osprey Duel 59), Osprey Publishing, Oxford 2014, ISBN 978-1-78200-353-3 .
  • Karlheinz Kens, Hanns Müller: The aircraft of the First World War 1914–1918. Heyne, Munich 1973, ISBN 3-453-00404-3 .
  • Peter Kilduff: Germany's First Air Force. 1914-1918. Arms and Armor Press, London 1991, ISBN 1-85409-053-4 .
  • Kenneth Munson: Warplanes. Fighter and training aircraft 1914–1919. 2nd revised edition. Orell Füssli Verlag, Zurich 1976, ISBN 3-280-00824-7 , ( Airplanes of the World in Colors ), pp. 24, 121–122.
  • Heinz Nowarra: The Development of Airplanes 1914–1918. Lehmanns, Munich 1959.

Web links

Commons : Nieuport 11  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. [1] - accessed on January 11, 2013
  2. according to Kenneth Munson: Fighter planes. Fighter and training aircraft 1914–1919 . 2nd revised edition. Orell Füssli Verlag, Zurich 1976, ISBN 3-280-00824-7 , ( Airplanes of the World in Colors ), p. 140, the Nieuport 11 had been in use since the summer of 1915
  3. [2] - accessed on January 11, 2013
  4. [3] - accessed on January 11, 2013
  5. [4] - accessed on January 11, 2013