Breguet br. 1150 Atlantic
Development and design:
The Atlantic is a NATO project that found its origin in the fifties of the last century. The first official order was placed on June 6, 1963. It comprised 20 aircraft for the France Naval Air Arm. Followed by 20 aircraft for the Federal German Navy. (Marineflieger) In a later stadium the France Navy ordered another 20 aircraft. These 60 airframes were all delivered at the end of 1968. That same year the Royal Netherlands Navy ordered nine aircraft, as a replacement for the decommissioned aircraft carrier Hr.Ms. Karel Doorman.
Italy also joined the French-German consortium with Aeritalia and Alfa Romea and ordered 18 aircraft in October 1968.
In 1986 the French Navy sold 3 airframes to the Pakistan Navy
As mentioned, twenty airframes were delivered to the German Federal Naval Air Arm (Marineflieger) between 1966/1967. One was lost in a crash during landing due to crew failure. Due to the fact this was a short test sortie, the crew consisting out of pilot, co-pilot and flight engineer could depart the aircraft without loss of life.
The damage was so extensive, that the aircraft was a complete write off. Cause of accident: “The aircraft landed in such a steep angle without correction just for touch down, that the aircraft collapsed on impact, and it more or less completely toppled over and broke off behind the nose section” (picture attached)
So, you can say, that the Marineflieger, taking into consideration that the aircraft was operational from 1966 until 2008, achieved an excellent safety record
Capabilities in General:
Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA) are the eyes of the fleet. Far over the horizon it can search vast areas to find and report / attack surface and submersed assets, or as more recently seen, anti-piracy patrols. Due to the high-tech assets, Flag Officers from Task groups are highly depending on these flying information centers.
Flight Characteristics in General:
The aircraft empty weighs 24.000 KG. Maximum take-off weight by a long-range maritime patrol is 43.500 kg. Extraordinary is the fact that it can also land with the same weight in the airframe.
Length:31.75 – Width 36.30 – Height 11.33 (All meters)
The very reliable 2 Rolls Royce Tyne R. Type 20 MK21, each with 6105 HP, makes sure there is enough thrust for comfortable maneuvering the aircraft in all kinds of weather conditions. When the throttle is fully opened, it can reach a speed of 300 knots = 556 KM/H. Normal procedure during patrols are 170 knots = 314 KM/H. Fully topped up, under good conditions, it can “Hang” in the air for 18 hours.
Flight level: From just above sea level to 10 KM maximum (32800 feet).
Due to its special (boat-shape), it was able to stay afloat after a water landing in calm conditions.
(See attached picture from a Dutch Atlantic in the drink. Perfect landing an no casualties.)
Normally 12 persons, but there is seating arrangement for 25 persons. The aircrew is not under the command of the senior flight officer, but the Tactical Coordinator. Basically, this officer is responsible for carrying out the tasking. The Senior pilot is responsible for flight safety and follows the orders from the Tactical Coordinator. The third person in the cockpit is the flight engineer, normally a highly experienced Senior Non-Commissioned officer (SNCO – WO/WO1). Operating the on-board sensors is performed by officers and NCO/SNCO. There is a galley and dedicated toilet on board. (Not on the Neptune’s). If necessary, part of the crew can rest in folding berths.
Depth charges, AS12 rockets, MK44 torpedoes, laser guided bombs (French Navy), cargo canisters, SAR equipment.
The French, Italian and German Navy constantly updated airframes during their life cycle. These updates were far reaching to keep them state of the art. Some airframes were even modernized to function in the ELINT role. (Electronic Intelligence Gathering)
Current situation regarding the fleet of Atlantics.
At this moment, the German Atlantics are all decommissioned. Some found their way to museums, but most airframes ended up on the scrap yard. The Atlantic has been replaced by second hand former Royal Netherlands Navy Lockheed P-3C Orions.
The French Naval Air Force is still operating several the Atlantic NG (New Generation).
The Italian Air Force, after 45 years of service, has decommissioned its fleet of Atlantics and is in the process of replacing the Breguet with the P-72A, a militarized ATR-72-600.
The Netherlands lost three out of its fleet of nine with loss of life. In 1984 the last operational flight was performed to the North Atlantic. Destination was the weather ship “Cumulus” . Responsible for making meteorological observations for shipping, air lines, and shorestations . The crew had to drop a mail canister with mail and goodies for Christmas. The Atlantics were replaced by thirteen P-3 Orions.
In November 1985, the remaining six airframes were sold to the French government. Rumors suggest, that of this batch, three were sold to the Pakistan Navy. Serving 29 Squadron at the Naval Air Base Karachi-Faisal, near Naval Base Mehran. Fact is that a Pakistan Atlantic was shot down by an Indian Air Force MIG 21 on the 10th of August 1999. No survivors.
This came about in 2003, with the Revell kit numbers 04329-04384.
Bringing this model on the market was a risk. Big, ugly, and not highly trendy, but fellow modelers, an important maritime military aircraft. Thank you Revell for bringing this model on the market.
It builds like a dream. The only thing I missed was the extra wing spar as extra support / alignment for the (large) wings. I made my own wing spar. I got it wrong with the weight and ended up with a tail sitter, despite adding 80 grams in an Evergreen box, filled with PVC glue.
Most difficult, was the Super Decal Sheet. It represents the German Federal Flag, over the full length from the airframe. After completing this lengthy task, I still needed to airbrush, to get the flag complete. I can assure you, that additional airbrushing next and onto decals is nerve wrecking. You cannot use tape and must resort to pieces of carton. Loose in the hand and hope for the best. It worked out.
The crew access at the end of the airframe is open, with complete interior until the pressurized door from the crew compartment. The weapons bay is open and loaded with torpedoes and depth charges. Interesting is the weapon bay door, is that they slide open on a rail, directly next to the airframe. The first slide (port and starboard) has a flexible middle, so that it can form around the root of the wing.
This diorama depicts German Navy Atlantic 61-11 in an incredibly special paint scheme, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the German Air Force in 2006. This specific Atlantic belonged to Marineflieger Geschwader 3 and was home based on the Fliegerhorst (Naval Air Station (NAS) Nordholz.
The apron is quite large and gives the opportunity to add a flight crew and some vehicles to make it livelier. A time-consuming subject, and I am glad it is finished.
Additional figurines and vehicles:
The flight crew (Shapeways Figurines) are posed near the back entrance and is being photographed by the base photographer (ReedOak Figurines). Maintenance crew is from Preiser.
Vehicles: 5ton MAN GP truck (Revell) – VW 2T Pick-up (PJ production) – Unimog tow tractor (Planet Models) – Tow bar (Revell) – Mobile air conditioning unit (Hasegawa) – APU for electric power (Hasegawa). This APU was not in use by the German Navy, but this example was in the stash.
The gras is from the German firm Noch.
The whole scene is very lightly weathered with a mix of umber oil/white spirit.
1. Breguet Atlantic in Dutch Service 1969-1984 by Martin de Boer
2. Air Forces magazines (Italian Air Force)
3. Air Relic magazines French Breguet
4. This month in Scale Aircraft Modelling Volume 42, issue 09-11-2020
Thanks for watching and reading this rather long information sheet.
15 additional images. Click to enlarge.