The Rolls-Royce Avon was one of the first commercially and technically successful axial flow jet engines to be developed in Britain. Most British jet engine development had been focused on centrifugal flow engines which were bulky and difficult to modify for greater thrust capacity. Rolls-Royce completed the first Avon R.A.2 jet engine in 1947 and exhibited this engine at Farnborough in 1948. Production versions of the Avon were used in both civilian and military aircraft including the De Havilland DH106 Comet airliner, the Sud Caravelle airliner, the Canberra bomber, the Hawker Hunter fighter and the CAC CA-27 Sabre built in Australia.

The Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation at Fishermens Bend, Melbourne built the R.A.7 Avon under licence from Rolls-Royce as the Avon Mk. 26 for the CA-27 Sabre jet fighter which was also being built by CAC in the 1950s. A total of 218 Avon engines were built by CAC. This version delivered 7,500 lbs of thrust at sea level. CAC also built the Mk. 109 Avon engine for the Australian-built Canberra jet bomber The Museum purchased this Avon Mk. 26 engine from the Commonwealth Department of Supply in 1967. It was subsequently sectioned for display purposes.

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