The Focke-Wulf Fw 57 was a prototype German fighter-bomber. It was built in 1936 but never saw production.
Design and development
In 1934 the Reich Air Ministry (RLM) declared a requirement for a Kampfzerstorer (Bomber 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 the others.
The Fw 57 was a two-engine all-metal monoplane of conventional configuration, with a single fin and retractable tailwheel undercarriage. The pilot and navigator sit in tandem under a long canopy, the aft end of which consists of a gunner turret.
Three Fw 57 prototypes (V1-V3) were completed during 1936. The design was severely overweight, while the aircraft had poor handling. The original Kampfzerstorer concept which specified a multi-role aircraft with turret mounted armament had been abandoned by Autumn 1936 in favour of the simpler Zerstorer represented by the Bf 110, which omitted gun turrets and bombing capability to allow a greater performance. All further research into the Fw 57 was abandoned and dropped shortly thereafter.
Specifications (Fw 57 V1)
Data from Warplanes of the Third Reich
- Crew: 3 (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: 6 x 100 kg (220 lb) of 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
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