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FW-190A-7/A-8

Fighter

Focke-Wulf

The FW 190A-7/R2 (with 30-mm wing guns Мк108) of commander II/JG1  major Hajnts Ber, April, 1944. © Michael Bykov

The FW 190A-7/R2 (with 30-mm wing guns Мк108) of commander II/JG1 major Hajnts Ber, April, 1944.

Actual combat on the Soviet-German front differed greatly from simlated combat at the Air Forces Scientific Research Institute. German pilots did not engage in maneuverable combat in either the vertical or the horizontal plane. Their fighters tried to shoot down a Soviet aircraft in a surprise attack and then went into clouds or towards friendly territory. Ground-attack aircraft also strafec our ground troops unexpectedly. They rarely were intercepted on these and other occasions. Special trials the Air Forces Scientific Research Institute conductec focused on development of procedures and tactics to counter Focke-Wul: ground-attack airplanes. Captured Fw 190A-8 No. 682011 and "lightened Fw 190A-8 No. 580967 took part in this testing. Yak-3, Yak-9u and La-7—the most modern Red Army Air Forces fighters—took off to intercept them.

The "combat" showed that new tactical procedures were needed to counter German aircraft flying at low levels. After all, the Focke-Wulfs usually ingressed at low altitudes and regressed at treetop level at maximum speed. Under such conditions, it was hard to detect an attack in time. The pursuit became more complicated, because the gray matte paint concealed the German aircraft against the background of the landscape. In addition, German pilots employed engine reheat at low altitudes. It was determined here that the Focke-Wulf could deliver 582 km/h, i. e. neither the Yak-3 (the aircraft at the Air Forces Scientific Research Institute developed 567 km/h) nor the Yak-9U (575 km/h) could overtake them. Only the La-5 reached 612 km/h in augmented mode, but the speed margin was insufficient to reduce the range between the two aircraft to a distance permitting aimed fire.

Based on test results, the institute leadership issued recommendations: it is necessary to echelon the fighters in patrols at different altitudes. In this case, the mission of the pilots on the higher tiers would be to disrupt the bombing and to attack the enemy fighter escort, while the lower patrol aircraft, having the capability to overtake in a shallow dive, probably would be able to intercept the ground-attack aircraft themselves.

Specification
Crew 1
Dimensions
Wing span, m 10.5
Length, m 8.95
Height, m 3.95
Powerplant
PE BMW-801D-2, hp 1700
Weight, kg:
Empty weight 3470
Maximum takeoff weight 4900
Performance
Maximum speed, km/h 610
Time to 6000 m, min 9
Service ceiling, m 11400
Service range (with external fuel tank), km 1470
Armament
2 X 20-mm cannon in the boards, 2 X 20-mm cannon in the wing and 2 X 13-mm machine guns 4 + 2

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References

  • "The German Imprint on the History of Russian Aviation " /D.A. Sobolev, D.B. Khazanov/
  • "Aviation of Luftwaffe" /Viktor Shunkov/
  • "Encyclopedia of military engineering" /Aerospace Publising/
  • "Fighter FW 190" /А. Rusetckiy/

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