Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Focke-Wulf Fw 200
|Focke Wulf Fw 200 Condor|
30 fully-armed troops
|First Flight||July 27, 1937|
|Dimensions (Fw 200C-3/U4)|
|Length||23.5 m||77 ft 1 in|
|Wingspan||32.8 m||107 ft 7 in|
|Height||6.3 m||20 ft 8 in|
|Wing Area||118 m²||1,270 ft²|
|Empty||12,950 kg||28,550 lb|
|Maximum takeoff||22,700 kg||50,050 lb|
|Engine||4 × BMW/Bramo 323R|
|Power (each)||882 kW||1.200 hp|
|Maximum speed||360 km/h @ 4,800 m||224 mph @ 15,750 ft|
|Combat range||3,556 km||2,210 miles|
|Ferry range||4,440 km||2,760 miles|
|Service ceiling||5,800 m||19,030 ft|
|Rate of climb||m/min||ft/min|
|Guns||2 × 20 mm MG 151/20 cannon|
6 × 7,9 mm machine guns
1 × 13 mm MG 131 machine gun
|Bombs||up to 3.000 kg.|
The Focke-Wulf Fw 200 was a four engine airliner. Built under Lufthansa specification and with Dip. Ing Bansemir as project director, it first flew in July 1937 after just under one year of development with Dip. Ing Kurt Tank in the controls. It was the very first airplane to fly non-stop between Berlin and New York - on August 10, 1938 in 24 hours and 56 minutes. The return trip took only 19 hours and 47 minutes on August 13, 1938.
The aircraft was a simple development of a pre-war commercial craft. First flown in 1937 it was an all metal construction, four-engine monoplane capable of carrying 25 passengers up to 3000 km. To adapt it for wartime, hard-points were added on the wings for bombs, the fuselage was extended and strengthened to create more space and front, aft and dorsal gun positions were added. The extra weight of the improvements meant that a number of early Condors would break-up on landing, a problem that was never entirely fixed. Later models were equipped with radar.
It was built in 3 versions (Fw 200A, B, and C). The Model A was a purely civilian plane used by Lufthansa, DDL in Demmark , and Syndicato Condor in Brazil. The Fw 200B and Fw 200C models were used as long-range bombers, reconnaissance, troop and VIP transport planes. Adolf Hitler used a Fw 200V-1 model . His "seat" in the cabin was equipped with back-armor plating and an automatic parachute with downward throws. This plane was named "Immelmanns III" and first carried the markings "D-2600", which eventually changed to "WL+2600" and finally "26+00".
The Luftwaffe initially used the aircraft in conjunction with the Kriegsmarine, making great loops out across the North Sea and (following the fall of France) the Atlantic Ocean, the aircraft undertook maritime patrols and reconnaissance, searching for Allied convoys and warships to be reported and targeted by U-boats. The Condor could also carry bombs or mines to be used against shipping and it was claimed that from June 1940 to February 1941 they sank 365,000 tons. From mid-1941 the aircraft were instructed to avoid attacking shipping and avoid all combat in order to preserve numbers, but the arrival of the new escort aircraft carriers was a very serious threat.
The Condor was also used as a transport aircraft, notably flying supplies into Stalingrad in 1943. After late 1943 the Condor came to be used solely as a transport aircraft. For reconnaissance it was replaced by the Junkers Ju 290 and as France was invaded maritime reconnaissance became impossible. Production ended in 1944 with a total of 276 aircraft produced.
The Japanese Navy requested a military version for search and patrol duties, so Kurt Tank designed th Fw200V-10 with military equipment. This plane was held in Germany because of the war that had started in Europe and became the basis for all later military models used by Luftwaffe.
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details