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AD Scout
A.D. Scout Sparrow ExCC.
Role Fighter
Manufacturer Air Department
Designed by Harris Booth
First flight 1915
Status Scrapped
Primary user Royal Naval Air Service
Number built 4

The AD Scout (also known as the Sparrow) was designed by Harris Booth of the British Admiralty's Air Department as a fighter aircraft to defend Britain from Zeppelin bombers during World War I.

The Scout was a decidedly unconventional aircraft - a biplane with a fuselage pod mounted on the upper wing. A twin-rudder tail was attached by four booms, and it was provided with an extremely narrow-track undercarriage. The primary armament was intended to be a 2-pounder recoilless Davis Gun, but this was never fitted.

Four prototypes were ordered in 1915 and two each were built by Hewlett & Blondeau and the Blackburn Aeroplane & Motor Company. Trials flown by pilots of the Royal Naval Air Service proved the aircraft to be seriously overweight, fragile, sluggish, and difficult to handle, even on the ground. The project was abandoned and all four prototypes scrapped.



 United Kingdom

Specifications (AD Scout)

Data from The British Fighter since 1912[1]

General characteristics



  • Guns: 1x 2-lb Davis recoilless gun (intended, but never fitted in view of the fragility of the Scout's construction)


  1. ^ Mason 1992, p.42.
  2. ^ Bruce 1965, p.5.
  3. ^ Lewis 1979, pp. 392—393.
  • Bruce, J.M. War Planes of the First World War: Volume One Fighters. London:Macdonald, 1965.
  • Lewis, Peter. The British Fighter since 1912. London:Putnam, Fourth edition, 1979. ISBN 0 370 10049 2.
  • Mason, Francis K. The British Fighter since 1912. Annapolis, USA: Naval Institute Press, 1992. ISBN 1-55750-082-7.
  • British Aircraft Directory accessed 1 February 2007

See also

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