Aviation of World War II

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Fw 191

FW 191
  • Focke-Wulf
  • Medium Bomber. 1942

The FW 191 twin-engine medium bomber was developed for the promising 24-cylinder liquid-cooled Junkers Jumo 222 engines with an expected output of 2000 hp. The power of the power plant is 4000 hp. with a small midship twin-engine aircraft was supposed to provide the bomber with good flight data. However, the unavailability of the engines forced the technical department to agree to the installation of the most powerful engines available - the BMW-801, which are also close in size to the Jumo-222.

The production of the first two experimental FW 191-V1 and V2 began at the end of 1940, the first of which went into testing at the beginning of 1942.

Structurally, the aircraft was made aerodynamically clean high-wing, with the placement of all four crew members in one cockpit in the forward fuselage. Of the design features, it should be noted that it folds in half when opening the sash of the bomb bay. The crew entered the cockpit on a stepladder through an open bomb bay.

The armament was to consist of a bow pair of machine guns MG-81 , controlled by a bombardier, two turrets with the same armament at the end of each nacelle and upper turret with one cannon MG-151/20 and two MG-81 machine guns (all of these controlled by a radio operator), and the lower turret with one cannon and two machine guns was at the disposal of the flight engineer.

One of the features of the FW 191 was its complete electrification. All devices, up to the trimmers, had electric motors as a drive. The number of low-power engines on the plane was so great that it was nicknamed the "flying power plant". This "electrification" was the result of a direct decree from the RLM research department, despite the protests of Focke-Wulf. The incomplete electrical circuit, flutter of the flaps and the low power of the power plant created many problems during the tests of the aircraft, which caused the suspension of the program.

By the end of 1942, it became possible to install a pair of pre-production Jumo-222s on the FW 191, hydraulic drives had already been allowed by that time. For the installation of Jumo-222 and hydraulics, a variant of the FW 191-V6 aircraft was chosen, which had the least degree of readiness at the time of the suspension of the program. In the spring of 1943, this plane took off. The engines developed 2200 hp on takeoff, but this was not enough for a twenty-ton aircraft.

Projects FW 191B and FW 191C were developed with various options for weapons (see layout diagrams) and engines (the installation of twin DB-606 or DB-610 engines was considered), but by the end of 1943 all work on FW 191 was stopped. The FW 191B and FW 191C remained in projects.

FW 191 V6 Specification
Crew 7
Wing span, m 25.00
Length, m 18.45
Height, м 4.80
Wing area, m² 70.50
Weight, kg:
Empty 11,970
Loaded weight 19,575
2 PE 24-pistons. Junkers Jumo 222, power h.p. 2×2200
Maximum speed, km/h 620
Maximum rate of climb, m/s 6,1
Service ceiling, m 9,700
Service range, km 3,600

Armament. One cannon MG-151/20 or two 13mm machine guns MG-131 in the remotely controlled bow mount and in the tail cone, 2 MG-151/20 cannons each in the upper and lower remote controlled installations.

The bomb bay could accommodate 8 × 350-kg or 4 × 500-kg bombs, or 2 LT-1500 torpedoes, plus (in overload) 2 × 500-kg bombs, or 2 LT-1500 torpedoes on external suspensions.

Photo Description
Drawing FW 191

Drawing FW 191

Layout FW 191B and FW 191C (projects)

Layout FW 191B and FW 191C (projects).


  • "Aviation of Luftwaffe" /Viktor Shunkov/
  • "Encyclopedia of military engineering" /Aerospace Publising/