The A.E.G. PE was an armoured ground attack fighter that was the only aircraft of its type to be produced as a triplane.

A.E.G. PE Triplane from the right
A.E.G. PE Triplane from the right

PE stood for Panzer-Einsitzer, or armoured single seat aircraft. It was a much more advanced design that most A.E.G. aircraft, which used a welded steel tube fuselage with fabric covering. The PE had dural tubular wing spars with a fabric covering and a light alloy covered fuselage, with armour to protect the crew and engine. The 195hp Benz Bz IIIb engine was covered by a smooth fairing, a great improvement on the exposed engines used on so many A.E.G. engines.

The PE had two bay triplane wings, with the lower wing level with the base of the fuselage and the middle wing mounted just below the top of the fuselage. The PE was armed with two fixed forward firing machine guns and could carry small bombs on external racks.

The prototype made its maiden flight in March 1918. In tests the PE proved to be unstable, but easy to fly. The Inspektion der Fliegertruppe considered the PE's performance as a fighter to be unacceptable, and it wasn't ordered into production. A.E.G. continued to have faith in the basic design, and was already working on a biplane version of the design, the A.E.G. DJ.I, before tests began on the PE.

Engine: Benz Bz IIIb eight-cylinder water-cooled engine
Power: 195hp
Crew: 1
Span: 36ft 8 7/8in
Length: 21ft 7 7/8in
Empty weight: 2,606lb
Loaded weight: 3,113lb
Max speed: 103mph
Climb Rate: 3,280ft in 5.8min
Armament: Two 7.92mm LMG 08/15 machine guns
Bomb load: Small bombs on racks

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (29 March 2016), A.E.G. PE , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_AEG_PE.html

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