Military Factory
flag of Nazi Germany

Focke-Wulf Ta 183 (Huckebein) Jet-Powered Fighter (1945)

Authored By Staff Writer | Last Updated: 10/29/2014

The Focke-Wulf Ta 183 was only in the prototype phase at the end of the Second World War and thus never flew.

Tweet
By late in World War 2, German authorities had already made a stout commitment to the production of fighters over bombers. Seeing it that she would be fighting more or less a defensive-minded war for some time to come, models such as the Messerschmitt Bf 109 and Focke-Wulf 190 were evermore the important element to sustaining the German cause. It was therefore no surprise that the emphasis was also later placed on jet-powered fighter designs when the first rocket and turbojet-powered engines were being successfully tested. The Ta 183 design - a fighter design appearing on drawing boards as early as 1942 - was revisited and furthered once another Focke-Wulf fighter project, known simply as "Project VII", was officially rejected by the RLM. However, a pressed Germany meant that the Ta 183 "Huckebein" would only reach the design stage by the end of World War 2 in Europe.

The Ta 183 was intended to supplant all front-line fighters then in Luftwaffe service including the relatively new, first-generation, jet-powered Messerschmitt Me 262 "Schwalbe" and Heinkel He 162 "Volksjager" fighters. The Ta 183 was designed by a Kurt Tank team, led by talented engineer Hans Multhopp, in response to an RLM initiative calling for a highly-capable jet-powered fighter as part of its evolving "Emergency Fighter Program". Tank, serving as a long-time engineering at Focke-Wulf and having proved his worth to the firm, was allowed use of the first two letters of his last name in the designation of several late-war aircraft (to include the production Ta-152 high-altitude fighter, a variant of his successful Fw 190 fighter). However, the war would end before the impressive Ta 183 would even see the light of day - limiting the aircraft to several advanced wind tunnel models for evaluation.

The design of the Ta 183 was quite revolutionary and featured a nose-mounted intake running underneath the bubble canopy cockpit. Swept-back wings of 40 degrees, tricycle undercarriage and an identifiable high-mounted T-tail system were also part of the advanced look. The pilot sat firmly entrenched in a center-positioned cockpit area just aft of the nose intake and above the forward-placed, mid-mounted monoplane wings. The engine - a single Heinkel HeS 011 series turbojet of 3,500lbf - exited just at the base of the empennage. Overall, the design took on a sleek, nimble look with capabilities seemingly limited only by the imagination. The base armament would have been a battery of heavy caliber 4 x Mk 108 series 30mm cannons, all mounted in the nose - capable of attacking fighter or bomber with equal fervor. Ordnance capabilities would have included up to 1,000 pounds of external munitions for the strike fighter role - the centerline fuselage position would have allowed for semi-recessed ordnance while, overall, some five hardpoints could be assigned depending on individual munitions load.


Text ©2003-2014 www.MilitaryFactory.com. All Rights Reserved. No Reproduction Permitted. Email corrections/comments to MilitaryFactory at Gmail dot com.

Specifications for the
Focke-Wulf Ta 183 (Huckebein)
Jet-Powered Fighter


Focus Model: Focke-Wulf Ta 183 (Huckebein)
Country of Origin: Nazi Germany
Manufacturer: Focke-Wulf - Germany
Initial Year of Service: 1945
Production: Not Available


Crew: 1


Length: 30.18 ft (9.2 m)
Width: 32.81 ft (10.00 m)
Height: 0.00ft (0.00 m)
Weight (Empty): 5,247 lb (2,380 kg)
Weight (MTOW): 9,480 lb (4,300 kg)


Powerplant: 1 x Heinkel HeS 011 turbojet engine developing 3,500lbf of thrust.


Maximum Speed: 593 mph (955kmh; 516 kts)
Maximum Range: 0 miles (0km)
Service Ceiling: 45,932 ft (14,000 m; 8.7 miles)
Rate-of-Climb: 4,020 feet per minute (1,225 m/min)


Hardpoints: 4
Armament Suite:
STANDARD:
4 x 30mm Mk 108 cannons in chin/nose position

OPTIONAL:
Up to 1,000lbs of external ordnance such as conventional drop bombs. Support planned for 4 x Ruhrstahl X-4 wire-guided air-to-air missiles.


Variants:
Design II - Focke-Wulf Company Designation; minor wingtip redesign; repositioned undercarriage.


Design III - Focke-Wulf Company Designation; reduced wing sweep to 32 degrees; repositioned cockpit and wing assembly.

Project V - Alternative Project Designation

Project VI - Alternative Project Designation in some sources.

Ta 183 "Huckebein" - Base Series Designation; single prototype was never completed before the end of the war.

FMA IAe 33 "Pulqui II" - Argentinian futher development of the German design in post-war.


Operators:
Nazi Germany