Aviation of WWII
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Armament MG-15 MG-17 MG-81 MG-131 MG-FF MG-151 MK-103 MK-108 BK-37 Jazz


An Aviation Cannon


For struggle against tanks and heavy 4-motor bombers of allies the German command. In 1943-1944 has decided to use on airplanes of a cannon of calibre of 37-75 mm. Till this time of such guns in aircraft of Luftwaffe was not planned, but even prototypes were not. It was necessary to create air cannons on the basis of army guns.

Germans have created BK-37 air cannon, having taken for the basis of air-defence unit Flak-18 for struggle against tanks and heavy 4-motor bombers.

On fighter Me-110 of series G-4a/R1, R2. R3 in addition to two 30-mm to guns MK-108 with an ammunition load on 135 shots/trunk automatic gun BK-3,7 has been established. It fastened under a fuselage in the closed fairing. A feed of gun BK-3,7 was made from the shop arranged in the lower part of a cabin. Capacity of shop 72 cartridges.

Two 37-mm of gun BK-3,7 have been established on diving bombers Ju-87 G1 and G2. On part of Yu-87, armed BK-3,7, it was removed thus other arms, and on a part there was a nominal arms: three 7,92-mm MG-17 machine gun and one 7,92-mm turret of MG-15 machine gun.

Automatics of gun BK-3,7 worked due to energy of recoil of a trunk.

Rate of shooting of 160 shots/minutes. Fragmentation shells in weight an ammunition load 645 g, 820 m/s having initial speed, and armour-piercing shells in weight 685 g, having initial speed of 770 m/s. Fragmentation shells were applied on air targets, and armour-piercing - on tanks.

On Me-210A-0, Me-410A-2 fighters and Ju-88 BK-5 cannon (created on the basis 50-mm cannon of tank) has been established. The reserve of shells made 21 cartridge. However this gun had extremely low reliability, the big weight, small rate of shooting and a minor ammunition load.


  • "The history of air armament." /Alexander Shirokorad/