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Canadair CT-133 Silver Star

The Canadair CT-133 Silver Star (company model number CL-30) is the Canadian license-built version of the Lockheed T-33 jet trainer aircraft, in service from the 1950s to 2005. The Canadian version was powered by the Rolls-Royce Nene 10 turbojet, whereas the Lockheed production used the Allison J33.

CT-133 Silver Star
CT-133 Silver Star "Red Knight"
Role Military trainer aircraft
National origin Canada
Manufacturer Canadair / Lockheed
First flight December 1952
Retired 2005 (Canadian Forces)[1]
Primary users Royal Canadian Air Force
Canadian Forces
Number built 656
Developed from Lockheed T-33

Design and developmentEdit

The Canadair CT-133 was the result of a 1951 contract to build T-33 Shooting Star trainers for the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF). The powerplant is a Rolls-Royce Nene 10 turbojet instead of the Allison J33 used by Lockheed in the production of the original T-33. A project designation of CL-30 was given by Canadair and the name was changed to Silver Star. The appearance of the CT-133 is very distinctive due to the large fuel tanks usually carried on each wingtip.

A total of 656 CT-133 aircraft were built by Canadair.[2]

Operational historyEdit

Two CT-133s of the Royal Canadian Navy over Halifax in 1957.

The CT-133 entered service in the RCAF as its primary training aircraft for fighter/interceptors. The designation of the Silver Star in the Canadian Forces was CT-133.

The CT-133's service life in the RCAF (and later the Canadian Forces) was extremely long. One of the more unusual roles it played was as an aerobatic demonstration aircraft, the RCAF's Red Knight. Although the aircraft stopped being used as a trainer in 1976, there were still over 50 aircraft in Canadian Forces inventory in 1995. The youngest of these airframes was then 37 years old and had exceeded its expected life by a factor of 2.5. During this period, the Canadair T-33 was employed in communication, target towing, and enemy simulation.

A Canadair CT-133 Silver Star at RAF Elvington
A line of Canadair CT-133 Silver Stars of 417 Combat Support Squadron at CFB Cold Lake
Canadair CT-133 Silver Star without wingtip tanks, in RCAF markings at the Canadian Museum of Flight, July 1988

The final Canadair Silver Star Mk. 3 was retired from the Aerospace Engineering Test Establishment at CFB Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada, where it was used as an ejection seat testbed after 46 years of service.[3] CT-133 number 133648 was delivered to CFD Mountain View on 26 April 2005. Having been built in March 1959 as a CT-133 with original RCAF serial number 21648, it had reached a total of 11394.6 flight hours at the time of its retirement from military use. It has been sold on the civil market, along with fifteen other CT-133s. These aircraft will join the fifty others on the United States Civil Register and continue to fly as a part of the living legacy of the early jet age.


  • T-33A Silver Star Mk 1: Two-seat jet training aircraft for the RCAF. Built by Lockheed in the United States, 30 on loan to the RCAF.
  • CT-133ANX Silver Star Mk 2: The first Canadian prototype. One built.
  • Silver Star Mk 3: Two-seat jet training aircraft for the RCAF.
    • Silver Star Mk 3PT: Unarmed version.
    • Silver Star Mk 3AT: Armed version.
    • Silver Star Mk 3PR: Photo-reconnaissance version.
  • CE-133: Upgraded electronic warfare training aircraft.
  • CX-133: Ejection seat testbed.
  • ET-133: Aerial threat simulator aircraft.
  • TE-133: Anti-ship threat simulator aircraft.



Aircraft on displayEdit

The following locations have CT-133 Silver Stars on display or in flyable condition:

CT-133 Silver Star displayed in St. Albert, Alberta
British Columbia
Nova Scotia
United Kingdom

Surviving aircraftEdit

United States

Specifications (CT-133)Edit

Data from[citation needed]

General characteristics


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Canadian Forces (April 2004). "CT-133 Silver Star". Archived from the original on 17 January 2008. Retrieved 31 January 2009.
  2. ^ Joe Baugher. "Lockheed TP-80C/TF-80C/T-33A". Archived from the original on 19 May 2008. Retrieved 11 July 2017.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  3. ^ see also "Canada's Fab Four", Air Forces Monthly
  4. ^ Andrade 1982, p. 27
  5. ^ a b c Aeroware (n.d.). "Canadair CT-133 Silver Star". Retrieved 8 January 2012.
  6. ^ National Research Council (13 February 2009). "T-33". Archived from the original on 29 June 2012. Retrieved 8 January 2012.
  7. ^ Jackson, Paul A. (1975). French Military Aviation. Hinckley, England: Midland Counties Publications. ISBN 0-904597-01-6.
  8. ^ Andrade 1982, p. 92
  9. ^ Andrade 1982, p. 185
  10. ^ Andrade 1982, p. 228
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Harold A. Skaarup Web page".
  12. ^ "Harold A. Skaarup Web page".
  13. ^ "Harold A. Skaarup Web page".
  14. ^ "Harold A. Skaarup Web page".
  15. ^ "Lockheed T-33 Silver Star | The Canadian Museum of Flight". Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  16. ^ "Comox Air Force Museum Silver Star". 13 September 1951. Archived from the original on 14 August 2003. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  17. ^ "Gimli's historic plane monument grounded for repairs". Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  18. ^ Air Force Heritage Museum, retrieved 31 July 2017
  19. ^ "Lockheed / Canadair CT-133 Silver Star " Atlantic Canada Aviation Museum". 22 March 1948. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  20. ^ Greenwood Military Aviation Museum (2015). "Collections". Archived from the original on 11 May 2015. Retrieved 17 August 2015.
  21. ^ "Shearwater Aviation Museum". Shearwater Aviation Museum. Archived from the original on 3 November 2013. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  22. ^ "Canadian Air & Space Museum | Canadair CT-133 Silver Star". 18 September 2003. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  23. ^ "Canadair T-33AN Silver Star 3 – Canada Aviation and Space Museum". Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  24. ^ "Canadian Historical Aircraft Association". Archived from the original on 14 October 2010. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  25. ^ a b "Our Aircraft". Archived from the original on 9 December 2019. Retrieved 9 December 2019.
  26. ^ London International Airport (2011). "Historical Display". Archived from the original on 4 November 2011. Retrieved 11 November 2011.
  27. ^ "Aircraft " National Air Force Museum of Canada". Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  28. ^ canadienne, Gouvernement du Canada, Défense nationale, Aviation royale. "Histoire - 3e Escadre Bagotville - Aviation royale canadienne". Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  29. ^ Base militaire de Val-d'Or 1976, retrieved 8 May 2018
  30. ^ "Canadair CT-133AN Silver Star 3, G-BYOY, RAF Manston History Museum". Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  31. ^ "Aircraft 21417 (Canadair CT-133 Silver Star 3 C/N T33-417) Photo by Terry Fletcher (Photo ID: AC466642)". Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  32. ^ "FAA Registry: N333MJ." Retrieved: 9 December 2019.
  33. ^ "FAA Registry: N83TB." Retrieved: 9 December 2019.
  • "Canada's Fab Four". Air Forces Monthly. Stamford, Lincolnshire, UK: Key Publishing Limited, August 2003. ISSN 0955-7091.
  • Flight Comment: The Canadian Forces Flight Safety Magazine. Ottawa: Publishing and Depository Services, Summer 2005. ISSN 0015-3702, .
  • Andrade, John: Militair 1982. London: 1982. ISBN 0-907898-01-7
  • Francillon, René. Lockheed Aircraft Since 1913. London: Putnam, 1982. ISBN 0-370-30329-6.
  • Pickler, Ron and Larry Milberry. Canadair: The First 50 Years. Toronto: Canav Books, 1995. ISBN 0-921022-07-7.
  • "Silver Star Stand Down". Air Classics April 2006, Canoga Park, California: Challenge Publications. ISSN 0002-2241.

External linksEdit