Gotha Go 244

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Gotha Go 244
Go244-1.jpg
Role Military transport monoplane
National origin Germany
Manufacturer Gotha
First flight 1940s

The Gotha Go 244 was a transport aircraft used by the Luftwaffe during World War II.

Development[edit]

The Go 244 was the powered version of the Gotha Go 242 military glider transport. Studies for powered versions of the Go 242 began early in the design of the glider, with one early proposal being for modification to allow a single Argus As 10C engine to be temporarily attached to the nose of the glider to allow recovery back to base after use. This idea was rejected, but the alternative of a permanently powered twin-engined version was taken forward.[1]

Three Go 242s were modified as prototypes of the powered Go 244, fitted with varying surplus radial engines. The first prototype, the Go 244 V1 was powered by two 660 hp (492 kW) BMW 132, while the second prototype had 700 hp (522 kW) Gnome-Rhône 14Ms and the third 750 hp (560 kW) Shvetsov M-25A engines. Although only the third prototype offered adequate engine out performance, the Luftwaffe had large stocks of captured Gnome engines, so this was chosen as the basis for the production conversion, although a few more aircraft were fitted with the BMW and Shvetsov engines.[2][3]

The B series was the main production model, being based on the Go 242B with a wheeled tricycle undercarriage and with fuel and oil carried in the tailbooms.[4] 133 were converted from Go 242 Bs, while a further 41 were built from new before production reverted to the glider Go 242.[5] Plans were also created for single-engined variants with a nose-mounted Argus A 10C or Junkers Jumo 211.[6]

Operational history[edit]

The first examples of the Go 244 were delivered to operational units in Greece, based in Crete in March 1942. Some were also assigned to transport Geschwader in North Africa and the Eastern Front but on the former front they proved vulnerable to anti-aircraft fire and were withdrawn, being replaced by Junkers Ju 52 or Messerschmitt Me 323 aircraft.[6]

Variants[edit]

  • Go 244 A-1 - prototype, using the BMW 132 radial engine
  • Go 244 B-1 - production version, with fixed landing gear
  • Go 244 B-2 - B-1 with improved landing gear including a larger semi-retractable nose wheel
  • Go 242 B-3 - paratroop-carrying version of B-1 with double rear doors
  • Go 244 B-4 - paratroop-carrying version of B-2 with doors of B-3 and landing gear of B-2
  • Go 244 B-5 - training version with dual controls

Specifications (Go 244 B-1)[edit]

Data from Gotha's Twin-Boom Troopers[7]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1 or 2 pilots
  • Capacity: up to 23 troops or freight
  • Length: 15.80 m (51 ft 10 in)
  • Wingspan: 24.50 m (80 ft 4½ in)
  • Height: 4.70 m (15 ft 5 in)
  • Wing area: 64.4 m² (693 ft²)
  • Empty weight: 5,100 kg (11,243 lb)
  • Loaded weight: 6,800 kg (14,991 lb)
  • Max. takeoff weight: 7,162 kg (15,789 lb)
  • Powerplant: 2 × Gnome-Rhône 14M 06/07 14-cylinder radial engine, 742 hp (553 kW) at 2,000 m (6,560 ft) each

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 290 km/h (157 knots, 180 mph) at 4,000 m (13,100 ft)
  • Cruise speed: 270 km/h (146 knots, 168 mph) at 3,900 m (12,800 ft)
  • Range: 410 km (222 nmi, 255 mi)
  • Service ceiling: 8,350 m (27,395 ft)
  • Climb to 1,000 m (3,300 ft): 3 min

Armament

  • Guns: 3 × 7.92 mm (.312 in) MG 15 or MG 81Z machine guns

See also[edit]

Related development
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
Related lists

References[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ Air International December 1989, p. 291.
  2. ^ Air International December 1989, pp. 291–2.
  3. ^ Smith and Kay 1972, p.219.
  4. ^ Air International December 1989, p. 292.
  5. ^ Air International December 1989, p. 309.
  6. ^ a b Bishop, Chris; Roger Ford (2002). The Encyclopedia of Weapons of World War II. Sterling. p. 408. ISBN 1-58663-762-2. 
  7. ^ Air International December 1989, pp. 288.
Bibliography
  • "Gotha's Twin-Boom Troopers". Air International 37 (6): pp. 286–292, 309. December 1989. 
  • Smith, J R; Kay, Antony L (1972). German Aircraft of the Second World War. London: Putnam. ISBN 0370000242.