Junkers Ju 488
|Sketch of the Ju 488|
|Developed from||Junkers Ju 188
Junkers Ju 288
Junkers Ju 388
In an effort to produce an advanced four engined strategic bomber for the Luftwaffe, a proposal was made by Junkers during 1944 to create a simplified design by combining sub-assemblies of the Ju 188, Ju 288, and Ju 388 (especially its cockpit) to new inner wing panels and midsection fuselage assemblies. This would result in a sleek aircraft with a length of almost 20.4 m (67 ft) and a wingspan of nearly 31.4 m (103 ft). The Ju 488 was to be initially powered by four BMW 801J radial engines, with each engine nacelle having one standard Ju 88-style rearwards-retracting single strut main landing gear unit, still rotating through 90° to lie flat (with the mainwheel above the end of the strut) within each of the quartet of nacelles. Later versions — as with a growing number of late-war German twin and multi-engined combat aircraft design proposals — were to be powered by four of the very troublesome 24-cylinder Jumo 222 liquid-cooled multibank inline engines. The first two prototypes, Ju 488 V401 and V402 had fuselage sections constructed at the Latécoère factory in France, while the other components were being prepared at Junkers factories in Germany. The Ju 488 V401 and V402 fuselages were completed by 1944, but were damaged by the French Resistance on 16 July 1944. Construction of four more prototypes, the V403 to V406, continued at low priority and were not finished by the end of the war.
The Junkers Ju 488 represented the last, and most serious, challenge to Heinkel, in that German aviation's firm efforts to promote the Heinkel He 277 to production status as Germany's Amerika Bomber, and on which all design work stopped early in April 1944, with the Ju 488 itself being abandoned late that same year.
Specifications (Ju 488A - estimated)
Data from War Planes of the Second World War:Volume Ten Bombers and Reconnaissance Aircraft
- Crew: 3
- Length: 23.25 m (76 ft 3 in)
- Wingspan: 31.29 m (102 ft 7¾ in)
- Height: 6.10 m (20 ft 0 in)
- Wing area: 88.0 m² (947.22 ft²)
- Empty weight: 21,000 kg (46,297 lb)
- Max. takeoff weight: 36,000 kg (79,366 lb)
- Powerplant: 4 × Junkers Jumo 222A-3/B-3 (two of each type) 24-cylinder liquid-cooled engine, 1,864 kW (2,500 hp) (take-off power) each
- Maximum speed: 690 km/h (373 knots, 429 mph) at 7,200 m (23,620 ft)
- Cruise speed: 487 km/h (263 knots, 303 mph)
- Range: 3,395 km (1,835 nmi, 2,110 miles)
- Service ceiling: 11,350 m (37,240 ft)
- Rate of climb: 551 m/min (1,810 ft/min)
- Guns: 2 × 20 mm MG 151 cannons in Fernbedienbare Drehlafette FDL 151Z remotely operated dorsal turret, and 2 × 13 mm (.51 in) MG 131 machine guns in Hecklafette HDL 131Z remote tail turret
- Bombs: up to 5,000 kg (11,023 lb) of disposable stores in internal bay
- Green 1968, p. 175.
- Filly, Brian. Junkers Ju 88 in Action, part 2. Carrollton, TX: Squadron/Signal Publications, Inc., 1991.
- Green, William. War Planes of the Second World War:Volume Ten Bombers and Reconnaissance Aircraft. London:Macdonald, 1968.
- Green, William. Warplanes of the Third Reich. London: Macdonald and Jane's Publishers Ltd., 1970. ISBN 0-356-02382-6.
- Smith, J.R. and Kay, Anthony. German Aircraft of the Second World War. London: Putnam and Company, Ltd., 1972. ISBN 0-370-00024-2.
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