Tuesday, 4 April 2017

RCAF Meteor

Although never officially taken on strength with the RCAF, four Gloster Meteors were tested and evaluated. Starting from August 1945 through November 1948, Meteors were pitted against the de Havilland Vampire and various Canadian environmental conditions. The winner would become first jet fighter for the post-war RCAF.

From the Test & Development Establishment at Rockcliffe, Ontario, to the Winter Experimental Establishment in Edmonton, Alberta, problems with the Meteor arose. Structural failures of the tail section, inadequate cockpit heaters, poor cold engine starts and odd airframe contraction in extreme weather were just a few.

The last Meteor tested, VT196, came to Canada in July 1953. Starting with winter trials, but in January 1954, it became the test bed for the afterburner system for Canada’s Orenda engine. After testing was completed in June 1955, it was returned to Britain.

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