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German Balkenkreuz

Germany's Arado Ar 240 reconnaissance, Arado Ar 240C-2 Night Fighter

Design

Arado started working on the E 240 project in 1938. It was to have the latest technology by using aerodynamic devices, pressurization, and a tail mounted airbrake. However instability of the aircraft plagued it throughout its development and operational career.

The first two prototype, the Ar 240 V1 and Ar 240 V2, proved to be very unstable. This lead to a redesigned prototype, the Ar 240 V3.

The Ar 240 V4 had the dive bombing equipment installed and proved successful, but it was thought that the reconnaissance version was more important.

The Ar 240 C-2 night fighter had remote controlled dorsal and ventral barbettes. It used a FuG 202 Lichtenstein radar array.

In December 1942 the program was halted.

Engines

Early models had the DB 601 engines installed with later models having the DB 603 or DB 605 engines.

Prototype

The prototype of the Arado Ar 240 was first flown on May 10, 1940. Over the next two years flight tests were conducted.

There was one prototype, Ar 240 V10, built as a night fighter. The prototype flew in the summer of 1943. It was to become the Ar 240C-2 but it never was produced.

Production

  • Manufacturer: Arado Flugzeugwerke GmbH

Variants

  • Arado Ar 240 V1, Arado Ar 240 V2: Initial unstable prototypes.
  • Arado Ar 240 V3: Prototype without equipment for dive bombing.
  • Arado Ar 240 V4: Prototype with dive bombing equipment.
  • Arado Ar 240 V5: Became the preproduction Arado Ar 240A-01
  • Arado Ar 240 V6: Became the preproduction Arado Ar 240A-02
  • Arado Ar 240 V10: Night fighter prototype. Became the Arado Ar 240 C-2.
  • Arado Ar 240 A-01: Reconnaissance.
  • Arado Ar 240 C-2: Night fighter.

Usage

The Arado Ar 240 V3 was used in high altitude and speed missions over England.

The Arado Ar 240A-01 and Ar 240A-02 flew missions over the Murmansk railway.

Specifications

  Arado Ar 240
Type High Altitude Fighter, Reconnaissance
Crew 2
Pilot, navigator
Engine (Type) 2: Daimler Benz DB 601E
OR 2: Daimler Benz DB 603
OR 2: Daimler Benz DB 605
Cylinders V 12
Cooling Liquid
Net HP 1,175 each
Fuel Capacity 603 gallons
Dimensions  
Span 43' 9", 54' 6"
16.6 m
Length 41', 42'
12.5 m
Height 12' 11"
Weight  
Loaded 20,834 lb
Performance  
Speed at 19,685' /
6,000 m
384 mph
Speed at 22,960' /
7,000 m
330 mph
528 kph
Service ceiling 34,450'
Range 1,242 miles
Armament 6: MG
  Arado Ar 240A-01
Type Reconnaissance
Engine (Type) 2: Daimler-Benz DB 601E
Cylinders I-12, inverted
Net HP 1,176 each
Dimensions  
Span 43' 9"
13.33 m
Length 42'
12.8 m
Height 12' 11"
3.95 m
Wing area 337 ft2
31.3 m2
Weight  
Empty 13,640 lb
6,200 kg
Loaded 20,790 lb
9,450 kg
Performance  
Speed @ 20,000' /
6,000 m
384 mph
620 kph
Climb 11 minutes to 20,000'
11 minutes to 6,000 m
Service ceiling 34,400'
10,500 m
Range with auxiliary
fuel tank
1,240 miles
2,000 km
Armament  
Nose 2: 7.92 mm MG 17
Barbettes 4: 7.92 mm MG 17
  Arado Ar 240C
Armament  
Fuselage - Blister 2: MG 151
Fuselage - Sides 2: MG 151
Wing - Roots 2: MG 151
Fuselage - Turrets 4: MG 151
  Arado Ar 240C-2
Type Night fighter
Engine (Type) 2: Daimler-Benz DB 603A-2
Cylinders 12
Cooling Liquid
Net HP 1,850 each
Dimensions  
Span 54' 5 1/8"
16.6 m
Length 43' 9.5"
13.35 m
Height 12' 11.5"
3.95 m
Wing area 376.75 ft2
35 m2
Weight  
Empty 20,400 lb
9,253 kg
Loaded 28,300 lb
12,837 kg
Performance  
Speed @ 19,685' /
6,000 m
419 mph
675 kph
Range 1,162 miles
1,870 km
Armament  
Forward firing 4: 20 mm MG 151
Dorsal barbette 2: 13 mm MG 131
Ventral barbette 2: 13 mm MG 131

Sources:

  1. Aircraft of WWII, General Editor: Jim Winchester, 2004
  2. The Great Book of Fighters, William Green, Gordon Swanborough, 1994
  3. World War II Airplanes Volume 1, Enzo Angelucci, Paolo Matricardi, 1976
  4. Jane's Fighting Aircraft of World War II, 1989
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site