Blohm & Voss failed to sell the German Luftwaffe on the idea of their asymmetric Bv 141 aircraft as a ground-attack platform. The service had long been searching for a replacement for their Junkers Ju 87 "Stuka" dive bombers and few challengers arose. The Bv 141 was simply too "different" in the scope of the war, seating its crew in a starboard side nacelle while keeping the engine and tail unit attached to an unmanned fuselage along portside. In testing the aircraft performed as designed and handling was good, enough to warrant production of some twenty of the type as tactical reconnaissance aircraft. The design was attributed to Dr. Richard Vogt.
Vogt then redrew the Bv 141 into a more conventional offering for the ground-support role as the P.196. This aircraft exhibited a traditional twin-boom arrangement and was to be powered by a pair of turbojet engines (2 x BMW 003 turbojets of 2,425lb thrust each). The engine nacelles were paired and mounted under the cockpit. The cockpit was given a bubble-style canopy for excellent vision and set just aft of a short nosecone assembly. The booms protruded s short distance ahead of the wing leading edges and passed through the trailing edges, joined by a single horizontal plane at the rear. Each boom end was given a vertical fin.
A bomb load of 2 x 1,100lb would have been carried. Each bomb would have been carried within the forward sections of the tail booms. There is also mention of a four-cannon armament scheme fitted to the nose.
The position of the jet nacelles made it such that a tricycle undercarriage could not be fitted. This left the design to reply on an unorthodox version of the tried-and-true tail-dragger arrangement. The single-wheeled main legs were fitted near the frontal section of the booms and retracted towards the wing roots. The smaller tailwheels were left to retract into their respective tail boom housings at the rear. The aircraft would therefore have a four-point stance while ground-running - born of necessity. Power was slated to come from a pair of BMW 003 series turbojets of unknown thrust output.
German Air Ministry officials were not interested in the project and the P.196 fell to history. Other aircraft went on to carry out the ground-attack /-support role into the waning weeks of the war.
Specifications and aircraft dimensions on this page are estimated on the part of the author.
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