Focke-Wulf Fw 57
The Focke-Wulf Fw 57 was a prototype German fighter-bomber. Prototypes were built in 1936 but never entered production.
Design and development
In 1934, the Reich Air Ministry (RLM) declared a requirement for a Kampfzerstörer (battle destroyer), a tactical multi-role fighter/bomber concept, and a possible predecessor to the late-1930s German Schnellbomber concept. Focke-Wulf submitted the Fw 57, Messerschmitt submitted the Bf 110 and Henschel submitted the Hs 124. The Fw 57 was larger than its two competitors; it was heavier and did not handle as well as them.
The Fw 57 was a twin-engine all-metal monoplane of conventional configuration, with a single fin and rearwards-retracting maingear members comprising its tailwheel undercarriage, into the engine nacelles. The pilot and navigator sat in tandem under a long canopy, the aft end of which had a gunner's turret.
Three Fw 57 prototypes (V1-V3) were completed during 1936. The aircraft was severely overweight and handled poorly. The original Kampfzerstörer concept, which specified a multi-role aircraft with turret-mounted armament had been abandoned by autumn 1936 in favor of the simpler Zerstörer represented by the Bf 110, which omitted gun turrets and bombing capability to allow greater performance. All further research into the Fw 57 was abandoned shortly thereafter.
Specifications (Fw 57 V1)
Data from Warplanes of the Third Reich
- Crew: three (pilot, navigator and gunner)
- Length: 16.40 m (53 ft 9⅔ in)
- Wingspan: 25.00 m (82 ft 0 in)
- Height: 4.10 m (13 ft 5⅓ in)
- Wing area: 73.5 m² (791.15 ft²)
- Empty weight: 6,814 kg (14,991 lb)
- Loaded weight: 8,317 kg (18,298 lb)
- Powerplant: 2 × Daimler-Benz DB 600A inverted V12 engine, 679 kW (910 hp) each
- Maximum speed: 404 km/h (218 knots, 251 mph) at 3,000 m (9,850 ft)
- Cruise speed: 374 km/h (201 knots, 232 mph)
- Service ceiling: 9,100 m (29,855 ft)
- Guns: 3 20 mm MG FF cannon (2 in the nose and 1 in a Mauser electric dorsal turret)
- Bombs: 600kg(1300lbs) bombs
- Green and Swanborough 1994, p. 213.
- Green 1972, pp. 176–178.
- Green 1972, p. 178.
- Green, William. Warplanes of the Third Reich. New York:Doubleday, 1972. ISBN 0-385-05782-2.
- Green, William and Gordon Swanborough. The Complete Book of Fighters. New York, Smithmark, 1994. ISBN 0-8317-3939-8.
- Herwig, D and H. Rode.Luftwaffe Secret Projects - Ground Attack & Special Purpose Aircraft. ISBN 1-85780-150-4
- Wagner, Ray and Heinz Nowarra. German Combat Planes: A Comprehensive Survey and History of the Development of German Military Aircraft from 1914 to 1945. New York: Doubleday, 1971.
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