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Arado Ar E.555

Long-Range / High-Speed Jet-Powered Bomber

Nazi Germany | 1943

"Development into the Arado Ar E.555 series was halted in December of 1944, no doubt due to the advance of the Allies on the ground."

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 05/08/2019 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
Arado proposed this E.555 flying wing concept towards the end of 1943 as a high-speed long-range bomber. The flying wing concept had eluded aircraft engineers for decades but it was seen as a potentionally stable design allowing for greater payloads and control. Arado produced no fewer than 15 flying wing E.555 designs of various types for the RLM throughout 1944 - each with considerable groundbreaking features.

The base E.555 was the E.555-1, an all-metal flying wing concept with a delta shape. Two large vertical fin surfaces were attached to either wing assembly with the fuselage contained in the forward-most portion of the gull-like wing assemblies. The engines were to be a cluster of six BMW 003A series turbojets held slightly off of the fuselage and maintained in the aft area of the design. Requirements stated that this new bomber possess the ability to carry upwards of 8,818lbs and thusly the E.555-1 was designed with a large under-fuselage internal bomb bay. The flying wing concept also played well into the design requirement of long range, needing to meet some 3,107 miles of flight time. The cockpit was pressurized to allow for high altitude work. It is assumed no fewer than 3 personnel would crew the system as there was a need for a pilot, copilot, and at least one gunner. Landing gears were of the tricycle type now beginning to take hold in newer aircraft designs. The E.555 would have utilized such a layout with the wing-installed gears were tandem for a total of four wheels to a gear. The nose gear was of a single arrangement mounting two wheels side-by-side.

Defensive armament consisted of a remote-controlled dorsal turret mounting twin MG 151/20 20mm cannons. This turret was located just aft of the cockpit and had a 360 degree rotation plus elevation. A second turret was mounted at the rear of the fuselage/wing area and was remote-controlled by a crewmember via periscope. This position also mounted twin MG 151/20 20mm cannons and the gunner sat in his position just aft of the dorsal turret behind the cockpit. Fixed forward-firing MK 103 30mm cannons were added to either wing root (one cannon per side) to round out the armament.

The E.555 was planned in many forms covering E.555-1 to E.555-11 (14). Each version differed mainly in powerplant used, either of BMW or Heinkel branding. Beyond that, the wing design changed somewhat between designs and some were featured with twin tail booms or a traditional empennage as opposed to the base flying wing originally envisioned. E.555-1 featured 6 x BMW 003 series turbojet engines, all mounted in a cluster above and at the extreme aft of the fuselage. E.555-2 was to be fitted with just four turbojet engines but these of Heinkel brand (He S 011). E.555-3 was designed with 2 x BMW 018 series engines while E.555-4 saw 3 x BMW 018 fitted. E.555-6 also had 3 x BMW 018 engines but featured a redesign of the wing elements. E.555-7 followed along the lines of the E.555-1 design but had 3 x BMW 018 engines instead of six with some subtle changes to the wing area. E.555-8a/8b saw a more radical take on the E.555 series design as a whole. It featured a swept-back wing surface area but twin tail booms ala the Lockheed P-38 Lightning, joined the ends by a single horizontal surface. E.555-9 was similar to this but the booms were not connect at the ends and featured outboard elevators. E.555-10 was similar to -9 but had outboard and inboard elevators to each tail boom end. E.555-11 was perhaps the most modern of all the E.555 design attempts as a complete traditional tail section was used with the 4 x BMW 018 engines all mounted atop the fuselage along the middle of the fusleage. Wings were still kept as swept-back. Along with the base E.555-1, the E.555-11 was perhaps the design with most promise.

By the end of 1944, the RLM gave up on the E.555 and ordered Arado to do the same. It is assumed because of the strides made by the Allies in capturing more and more German strongholds that resources needed to be put into a defensive war consisting primarily of fighters than bombers. Seeing it that the E.555's primary role was that of bomber and little else, there was no need to continually put more time, money and effort into a system that was limited in scope for the type of war Germany needed to fight by 1945.

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Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Arado Ar E.555-1 Long-Range / High-Speed Jet-Powered Bomber.
6 x BMW 003A turbojet engines.
534 mph
860 kph | 464 kts
Max Speed
49,213 ft
15,000 m | 9 miles
Service Ceiling
2,983 miles
4,800 km | 2,592 nm
Operational Range
City-to-City Ranges
Operational range when compared to distances between major cities (in KM).
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Arado Ar E.555-1 Long-Range / High-Speed Jet-Powered Bomber.
69.6 ft
(21.20 m)
O/A Width
16.4 ft
(5.00 m)
O/A Height
52,911 lb
(24,000 kg)
Design Balance
The three qualities reflected below are altitude, speed, and range. The more full the box, the more balanced the design.
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the Arado Ar E.555 Long-Range / High-Speed Jet-Powered Bomber .
2 x MK 103 30mm cannons in the wing roots.
2 x MG 151/20 20mm cannons in remote-controlled dorsal turret.
2 x MG 151/20 20mm cannons in remote-controlled tail turret position (periscope-controlled).
Notable series variants as part of the Arado Ar E.555 family line.
E.555-1 - 6 x BMW 003 series engines
E.555-2 - 4 x Heinkel He S 011 series engines; similar in design to E.555-1 model.
E.555-3 - 2 x BMW 018 series engines; similar in design to E.555-1 model.
E.555-4 - 3 x BMW 018 series engines - Redesign wings.
E.555-6 - 3 x BMW 018 series engines; extended wing surface area.
E.555-7 - 3 x BMW 018 series engines; lengthened rudders.
E.555-8a/8b - 3 x BMW 018 series engines; connected boom aft sections.
E.555-9 - 3 x BMW 018 series engines; extended tail booms with seperated elevator assemblies to each boom.
E.555-10 - 3 x BMW 018 series engines; extended tail booms with seperate elevator surfaces for each individual boom.
E.555-111(14) - 4 x BMW 018 series engines; single vertical tail surface section with traditional empennage.
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Arado Ar E.555. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 0 Units

Contractor(s): Arado Flugzeugwerke - Germany
National flag of modern Germany National flag of Nazi Germany

[ Nazi Germany ]
Relative Max Speed
Hi: 750mph
Lo: 375mph
Aircraft Max Listed Speed (534mph).

Graph Average of 563 MPH.
Era Crossover
Pie graph section
Showcasing Aircraft Era Crossover (if any)
Max Alt Visualization
Small airplane graphic
MACH Regime (Sonic)
RANGES (MPH) Subsonic: <614mph | Transonic: 614-921 | Supersonic: 921-3836 | Hypersonic: 3836-7673 | Hi-Hypersonic: 7673-19180 | Reentry: >19030
Aviation Timeline
1 / 1
Image of the Arado Ar E.555
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Mission Roles
Some designs are single-minded in their approach while others offer a more versatile solution to airborne requirements.
Some designs stand the test of time while others are doomed to never advance beyond the drawing board; let history be their judge.
Going Further...
The Arado Ar E.555 Long-Range / High-Speed Jet-Powered Bomber appears in the following collections:
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