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The Supermarine Spitfire Mk.22 was a single engine, single seat fighter which served with the Royal Air Force during the early post war period. When the first Rolls Royce Griffon equipped Spitfires were tested it was obvious that a stronger airframe would be needed to harness the full power of the new engine. Added to this was the requirement for a much stiffer wing; the result of these findings was the Spitfire Mk.21. The Mk.21 was also fitted with larger ailerons and the same 2050 hp Griffon 65 engine which was fitted to the Mk.XIV and Mk.XVIII. By this point in the aircraft’s life, the Spitfire was so different from RJ Mitchell’s original concept that the notion of renaming the new aircraft the ‘Victor’ was considered. The Air Fighting Development Unit at RAF Boscombe Down began to test the Mk.21 in late 1944, but were deeply unhappy with the new Spitfire and recommended that no further attempts were made to progress the basic Spitfire design. Chief amongst the AFDU’s complaints was directional instability: Supermarine attempted to solve this problem by modifying the control surfaces. It was only with the introduction of a new, enlarged tailfin and tail plane which finally solved the instability problems. The Mk.22 differed from the Mk.21 only in having a teardrop bubble canopy – a change which had not required a new mark number in previous Spitfires – and a different electrical system. The Mk.22, as with the Mk.21, was armed with four 20mm Hispano cannons. The Mk.22 was more prolific and more successful than the Mk.21, with some 280 aircraft being manufactured. It was used to equip No.73 Squadron and twelve squadrons of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force. In 1955 the Spitfire Mk.22 was declared obsolete by the RAF and many were exported to South Rhodesia, Syria and Egypt.