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In the fifties, Between 1954 and 1958, Air Craft Marine Engineering (ACME) Company of Van Nuys, California, had designed an eight-scat twin-jet triphibious aircraft suitable for executive transport and utility uses. A mock-up had been completed and the prototype Model A-1 was expected to fly in 1958.


Powerplants were Continental Model 420 (Turbomeca Aspin II) turbofans rated at 790 lb. nominal thrust. These were selected because of the high propulsive efficiency evident in the low specific fuel consumption at relatively high cruising speed (340 mph). Also, the bi'pass feature effectively serves as a high efficiency pump for the BLC system Engine anct' nacelle.


The aircraft should be able to operate from land, water or snow through the use of a sponson/landing gear combination with shock-absorbing liquid springs. Drag-producing wing-tip floats were not required with these sponsons, and a retractable step fairing further reduces hull-drag losses.

A complete boundary-layersystem should provide STOL characteristics permitting the A-l to be flown from unprepared fields at 45 mph besides cutting down water take-off runs. A retractable outboard motor, remotely started and steered, was located in the tailcone, and should enable the pilot to cut the jet engines after landing and taxi the aircraft through a harbour to a dock or mooring.

ACME General data

TypeTwin turbofan Seaplane
Project period1954-1958

Power plant

EngineContinentalmodel 420
Max ratings350 kg792 lbs


Span14,02 m46 ft
Length 11,58 m38 ft
Height3,50 m11.5 ft
Areas ft²
Aspect ratio  


Useful Load (average)830 kg1,830 lbs
Fuel capacity1817 l480 US Gal.
Max. permissible 4082 kg9000 lbs
Wing Loadingk/m²lb/ft²


Vne - Max. speed595 km/h370 mph
Vno - Max. speed in operation 547 km/h340 mph
Vs - Stall speedkm/hmph
Max. rate of climbm/sft/min
Service ceilingmft
Max Range1865 km1.160 mil.