- Payne, Alan
- Naval technology
- None noted.
- RAN Ships
- None noted.
- June 1976 edition of the Naval Historical Review (all rights reserved)
Had the War lasted a few months longer, R31 would certainly have given a good account of herself – she had speed and endurance, and was highly manoeuvrable. Perhaps it was the Armistice that killed her; she was certainly a remarkable airship.
In Higham’s book British Rigid Airships, 1908-1931, the American author refers to Muller: ‘Muller, if that was his real name, is one of the unknown and fascinating people connected with the British rigid airship programme. Until I returned to the United States and communicated with Charles L. Keller and Dr. Douglas Robinson, it was commonly believed that the 31 Class had been designed from the wreckage of SL11, the only Schutte-Lanz ship to have been shot down over England. But in fact it was almost completely consumed by fire when it fell nearly nine months after the Admiralty had obtained their information from Muller. Of the man himself, little is known, except that by November 1917 he had been discharged in Britain, and had turned up in Washington, peddling his secrets to the American Navy, who played along until they obtained access to the later British designs. The Americans apparently did not know exactly how close to the British Muller had been.’