JF Ptak Science Books Post 276
Talk about an unusual-looking aircraft: during the Second World War the Blohm u. Voss "BV 141" may have defined that category. This image appeared in The Illustrated London News for 23 May 1942, drawn by the indomitable G.H. Davis, and gives an excellent view of what the editors called "a lop-sided freak". Perhaps the editors of the ILN wanted to educate its readers on the plane since it was supposed to be widely employed on the Russian Front, though it looks like only 38 were ever built (and none survive today). Actually, the plane, designed by Dr. Richard Vogt (1894-1979), was a high-flying three-seater surveillance aircraft capable of 220 mph at 17,000 feet, powered by a single 1000 hp Bramo Fafnir 9-cylinder radial engine. The idea for the design was to give the pilot and co-pilot a very wide field of view--and by this, I'm guessing that the field of view most affected and aided by this would be straight down. The rear gunner also had an enormous field of view.
As it turns out Vogt survived the war and spent his Golden Years in the U.S., seven of them (1960-1966) with Boeing to evaluate hydrofoils and vertical liftoff systems: he had built other odd planes during his career, and carried them with them into near-retirement, making this sort of design his metier.
General characteristics (from the Wiki article HERE)
- Crew: 3, pilot, observer and rear-gunner.
- Length: 45 ft 9 in
- Wingspan: 45 ft 9 in
- Height: 11 ft 9 in
- Wing area: 570 ft²
- Empty weight: 10,363 lb
- Loaded weight: 12,568 lb
- Powerplant: 1× BMW 801, 1,160 kW (1,560 hp)
- Maximum speed: 272 mph @ 11,500 ft
- Range: 745 mi
- Service ceiling 32,800 ft
- Rate of climb: 1,860 ft/min