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Focke-Wulf Fw 189 Uhu (Owl)

Nazi Germany (1940)
Picture of Focke-Wulf Fw 189 Uhu (Owl) Tactical Reconnaissance Aircraft

The Focke-Wulf Fw 189 Owl was utilized in the reconnaissance and the nightfighting role, particularly on the Eastern Front.


Detailing the development and operational history of the Focke-Wulf Fw 189 Uhu (Owl) Tactical Reconnaissance Aircraft.  Entry last updated on 1/7/2018. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com

The Focke-Wulf brand Fw 189 Uhu (translated to "Owl") was of the most peculiar aircraft design for the German Luftwaffe in the Second World War, but by no means made less lethal by its appearance. The system accounted for a successful operational run across the Eastern Front against the Russians, where it was used in a short-range tactical reconnaissance role with limited usage in a nightfighting capacity. In all, the 848 examples would produce several variants, each with specialized changes and modifications to suit required roles.

The Fw 189 was of a twin-engine design, made up of a long-spanning wing element and twin booms. The Fw 189 system was crewed by three personnel (consisting of the pilot and two gunners) positioned in a cockpit sitting high above and between the engine booms featuring a nearly all-glazed greenhouse-type design. The three crew consisted of the pilot and two gunners - one gunner manning a twin barrel dorsal machine gun mounting and the other a twin-barrel machine gun mounting in a tail cone turret assembly. An additional 441lbs of external stores were afforded the system.
The real dedicated role of the Fw 189 was as a reconnaissance aircraft and the systems were fielded en masse against the Soviets. Though range limited the system to just 416 miles, no fewer than 30 Fw 189's were converted to the nightfighter role to combat light Soviet fighter incursions occurring on a regular basis along the front. In all, the Fw 189 system maintained a successful service record and played an important - albeit limited role - in the Eastern Front offensives.






Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

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Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 300mph
Lo: 150mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (217mph).

    Graph average of 225 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
NYC
 
  LON
LON
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MOS
MOS
 
  TOK
TOK
 
  SYD
SYD
 
  LAX
LAX
 
  NYC
Graph showcases the Focke-Wulf Fw 189 Uhu (Owl)'s operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
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Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
848
848


  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


Altitude Visualization
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National Flag Graphic
Origin: Nazi Germany
Year: 1940
Type: Tactical Reconnaissance Aircraft
Manufacturer(s): Focke-Wulf - Germany
Production: 848
Status: Retired, Out-of-Service
Global Operators:
Nazi Germany
Historical Commitments / Honors:

Military lapel ribbon for Operation Allied Force
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Britain
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Midway
Military lapel ribbon for the Berlin Airlift
Military lapel ribbon for the Chaco War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cuban Missile Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the French-Indochina War
Military lapel ribbon for the Golden Age of Flight
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Iran-Iraq War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1982 Lebanon War
Military lapel ribbon for the Malayan Emergency
Military lapel ribbon for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Six Day War
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Suez Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for Warsaw Pact of the Cold War-era
Military lapel ribbon for the WASP (WW2)
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur
* Ribbons not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns/operations.
Measurements and Weights icon
Structural - Crew, Dimensions, and Weights:
Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Focke-Wulf Fw 189 Uhu (Owl) model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.

Operational
CREW


Personnel
3


Dimension
LENGTH


Feet
39.47 ft


Meters
12.03 m


Dimension
WIDTH


Feet
60.37 ft


Meters
18.4 m


Dimension
HEIGHT


Feet
10.17 ft


Meters
3.1 m


Weight
LOADED


Pounds
9,193 lb


Kilograms
4,170 kg

Engine icon
Installed Power - Standard Day Performance:
2 x Argus As 410A-1 12-cylinder engine developing 465 horsepower each.

Performance
SPEED


Miles-per-Hour
217 mph


Kilometers-per-Hour
350 kph


Knots
189 kts


Performance
RANGE


Miles
416 mi


Kilometers
670 km


Nautical Miles
362 nm


Performance
CEILING


Feet
23,950 ft


Meters
7,300 m


Miles
4.54 mi

Supported Weapon Systems:

Graphical image of an aircraft medium machine gun
Graphical image of an aircraft conventional drop bomb munition
Armament - Hardpoints (2):

2 x 7.92mm machine guns (in wing roots)
2 x 7.92mm twin-barrel machine gun (in dorsal gun position)
2 x 7.92mm twin-barrel machine gun (in tail turret cone position)

Maximum bomb load of up to 441lbs.
Variants: Series Model Variants
• Fw 189A - Base Production Model Designation
• Fw 189A-2 - Improved defensive armament
• Fw 189A-3 - Trainer with dual-control arrangement.
• Fw 189A-4 - Tactical Attack Model with improved underside armoring and 20mm cannon.