The RWD 22 was a twin float observation aircraft that was under development for the Polish Navy when the Germans invaded.
In the late 1930s the L.W.D. company had a poor relationship with the Polish Air Force, but at the same time most of the rest of the Polish aircraft industry had little interest in supplying the Navy’s requirements, which tended to be on a much smaller scale than Army orders. When the Lublin company had gone bankrupt its design for a naval floatplane was abandoned, and L.W.S., which took over the firm, had no interest in it, instead suggesting the L.W.S.5, a floatplane version of the L.W.S.4 Zubr bomber. The L.W.S.5 was a poor design, and so the Navy was interested when L.W.D. consulted with them on the design of a potential twin engined twin-float seaplane. In the autumn of 1938 the Navy ended its interest in the L.W.S.5 and instead ordered development to begin on the RWD 22.
The new aircraft was a three-seat low wing cantilver floatplane, with the twin floats carried on faired struts below the engine nacelles. The initial designs used either 240hp Argus As 10C eight cylinder air cooled engines or two 330hp Walter Minor 12-IMR twelve-cylinder engines. It was to carry out a wide range of activities, including coastal protection and reconnaissance, convoy escort and shipping attacks and a range of training uses. It was to be armed with a hand held 7.7mm machine gun in a glazed nose, a fully enclosed dorsal gun and to be able to carry three 220lb bombs externally or twenty-four 27.5lb bombs in vertical racks internally. It was also to be able to carry a camera and full radio equipment.
The Navy then added the requirement to be able to carry a 1,653lb torpedo, so the aircraft had to be enlarged and more powerful engines used. Early in 1939 a version to be powered by two 430hp P.Z.L. G.1620B Mors B engines was approved, and a scale model was produced. Work on two prototypes and a static test airframe began in the summer of 1939 and it was hoped that it would make its maiden flight in the summer of 1940. Little progress had been made when the Germans invaded.
Work had also begun on a possible land based version for the Air Force, the RWD 24, but even less progress was made on this.
Engine: Two P.Z.L. G.1620B Mors B engines
Power: 430hp each
Span: 59ft 0.75in
Length: 45ft 11.5in
Height: 13ft 9.5in
Empty Weight: 5,732lb
Loaded Weight: 9,479lb (10,185lb with torpedo)
Maximum Speed: 180.2mph at 4,921ft
Cruising Speed: 155.3mph
Climb rate: 4 min to 3,280ft
Range: 683miles normal, 1,572 miles max with extra fuel tanks
Guns: One flexibly mounted 7.7mm nose gun and one 7.7mm dorsal gun
Bomb load: Four 220lb bombs or twenty-four 27.5lb bomb or one 1,653 torpedo