Westland Lysander IIIa

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    During World War II, Westland Lysander crews flew highly classified clandestine missions from England over Axis territory. Many of their operational missions remain tightly locked in official secrecy. The Lysander was designed to land and take off from places normally unrecognizable as airfields. The aircraft operated comfortably from pastures, fields, and even clearings in the forest and was effective at inserting secret agents deep into enemy territory.

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    During World War II, Westland Lysander crews flew highly classified clandestine missions from England over Axis territory. Many of their operational missions remain tightly locked in official secrecy. The Lysander was designed to land and take off from places normally unrecognizable as airfields. The aircraft operated comfortably from pastures, fields, and even clearings in the forest and was effective at inserting secret agents deep into enemy territory.

    2 of 12

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    Westland Lysander IIIa army cooperation/liaison high wing aircraft; bent seagull wing shape with trailing edges tapered forward equipped with trailing edge flaps and leading edge slats, which operated automatically; the wing is braced with two pairs of "V" struts; steel tube fuselage with aluminum panels on front half with fabric covered rear; aluminum cowling and aluminum covered fixed undercarriage and wheels; Medium Sea Gray and Dark Green upper camouflage pattern on upper surfaces, Matt Black underside, and Type C1 Fuselage Roundel: yellow, dull blue, white, and dull red, Dull Red Squadron Code "AC"; Bristol Mercury XX nine-cylinder engine.

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    Westland Lysander IIIa army cooperation/liaison high wing aircraft; bent seagull wing shape with trailing edges tapered forward equipped with trailing edge flaps and leading edge slats, which operated automatically; the wing is braced with two pairs of "V" struts; steel tube fuselage with aluminum panels on front half with fabric covered rear; aluminum cowling and aluminum covered fixed undercarriage and wheels; Medium Sea Gray and Dark Green upper camouflage pattern on upper surfaces, Matt Black underside, and Type C1 Fuselage Roundel: yellow, dull blue, white, and dull red, Dull Red Squadron Code "AC"; Bristol Mercury XX nine-cylinder engine.

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    Westland Lysander IIIa army cooperation/liaison high wing aircraft; bent seagull wing shape with trailing edges tapered forward equipped with trailing edge flaps and leading edge slats, which operated automatically; the wing is braced with two pairs of "V" struts; steel tube fuselage with aluminum panels on front half with fabric covered rear; aluminum cowling and aluminum covered fixed undercarriage and wheels; Medium Sea Gray and Dark Green upper camouflage pattern on upper surfaces, Matt Black underside, and Type C1 Fuselage Roundel: yellow, dull blue, white, and dull red, Dull Red Squadron Code "AC"; Bristol Mercury XX nine-cylinder engine.

    5 of 12

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    There are restrictions for re-using this media. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    Westland Lysander IIIa army cooperation/liaison high wing aircraft; bent seagull wing shape with trailing edges tapered forward equipped with trailing edge flaps and leading edge slats, which operated automatically; the wing is braced with two pairs of "V" struts; steel tube fuselage with aluminum panels on front half with fabric covered rear; aluminum cowling and aluminum covered fixed undercarriage and wheels; Medium Sea Gray and Dark Green upper camouflage pattern on upper surfaces, Matt Black underside, and Type C1 Fuselage Roundel: yellow, dull blue, white, and dull red, Dull Red Squadron Code "AC"; Bristol Mercury XX nine-cylinder engine.

    6 of 12

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    There are restrictions for re-using this media. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    Westland Lysander IIIa army cooperation/liaison high wing aircraft; bent seagull wing shape with trailing edges tapered forward equipped with trailing edge flaps and leading edge slats, which operated automatically; the wing is braced with two pairs of "V" struts; steel tube fuselage with aluminum panels on front half with fabric covered rear; aluminum cowling and aluminum covered fixed undercarriage and wheels; Medium Sea Gray and Dark Green upper camouflage pattern on upper surfaces, Matt Black underside, and Type C1 Fuselage Roundel: yellow, dull blue, white, and dull red, Dull Red Squadron Code "AC"; Bristol Mercury XX nine-cylinder engine.

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    Usage Conditions Apply

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    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    Westland Lysander IIIa army cooperation/liaison high wing aircraft; bent seagull wing shape with trailing edges tapered forward equipped with trailing edge flaps and leading edge slats, which operated automatically; the wing is braced with two pairs of "V" struts; steel tube fuselage with aluminum panels on front half with fabric covered rear; aluminum cowling and aluminum covered fixed undercarriage and wheels; Medium Sea Gray and Dark Green upper camouflage pattern on upper surfaces, Matt Black underside, and Type C1 Fuselage Roundel: yellow, dull blue, white, and dull red, Dull Red Squadron Code "AC"; Bristol Mercury XX nine-cylinder engine.

    8 of 12

    Usage Conditions Apply

    There are restrictions for re-using this media. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    Westland Lysander IIIa army cooperation/liaison high wing aircraft; bent seagull wing shape with trailing edges tapered forward equipped with trailing edge flaps and leading edge slats, which operated automatically; the wing is braced with two pairs of "V" struts; steel tube fuselage with aluminum panels on front half with fabric covered rear; aluminum cowling and aluminum covered fixed undercarriage and wheels; Medium Sea Gray and Dark Green upper camouflage pattern on upper surfaces, Matt Black underside, and Type C1 Fuselage Roundel: yellow, dull blue, white, and dull red, Dull Red Squadron Code "AC"; Bristol Mercury XX nine-cylinder engine.

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    Usage Conditions Apply

    There are restrictions for re-using this media. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    Westland Lysander IIIa army cooperation/liaison high wing aircraft; bent seagull wing shape with trailing edges tapered forward equipped with trailing edge flaps and leading edge slats, which operated automatically; the wing is braced with two pairs of "V" struts; steel tube fuselage with aluminum panels on front half with fabric covered rear; aluminum cowling and aluminum covered fixed undercarriage and wheels; Medium Sea Gray and Dark Green upper camouflage pattern on upper surfaces, Matt Black underside, and Type C1 Fuselage Roundel: yellow, dull blue, white, and dull red, Dull Red Squadron Code "AC"; Bristol Mercury XX nine-cylinder engine.

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    Usage Conditions Apply

    There are restrictions for re-using this media. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

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    Westland Lysander IIIa

    During World War II, Westland Lysander crews flew highly classified clandestine missions from England over Axis territory. Many of their operational missions remain tightly locked in official secrecy. The Lysander was designed to land and take off from places normally unrecognizable as airfields. The aircraft operated comfortably from pastures, fields, and even clearings in the forest and was effective at inserting secret agents deep into enemy territory.

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    Westland Lysander

    Westland Lysander on display at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center.
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Display Status:

This object is on display in the Boeing Aviation Hangar at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA.

Boeing Aviation Hangar

During World War II, Westland Lysander crews flew highly classified clandestine missions from England over Axis territory. Many of their operational missions remain tightly locked in official secrecy. The Lysander was designed to land and take off from places normally unrecognizable as airfields. The aircraft operated comfortably from pastures, fields, and even clearings in the forest and was effective at inserting secret agents deep into enemy territory.

The museum's Lysander was built in Canada in 1942. Little is known about its service history, but it likely flew as an aerial tow plane for target practice. This aircraft is painted in the colors of 138 Squadron RAF. During World War II, this squadron was based at RAF Tempsford Airfield. It was controlled by the Special Operations Executive and flew clandestine missions supplying resistance forces and transporting agents to and from occupied Europe.