January 30, 2005

Sunday Aircraft Cheesecake (Arado Ar 232)

This week's serving is the interesting, but ultimately unsuccessful, German WWII transport aircraft, the Arado Ar 232 Tausendfuessler "Tatzelwurm" (i.e., "Millipede").

It came in two variants, the Ar 232A, which was powered by 2 BMW 801 engines, and the Ar 232 B, powered by 4 BMW-Bramo 323 R-2 engines. The plane had a normal "tricycle" landing gear for landings on well-paved airfields. However, the landing gear could be "broken," to lower the plane onto the 22 belly wheels, from which the plane derived its nickname. This allowed the cargo ramp to be extended at a smaller angle from the rear of the cargo bay. The belly wheels also allowed for additional support when landing on rough surfaces. Amazingly, even when fully loaded with a 16-metric-ton cargo, the plane could take off in 200 meters (shorter with rocket-assisted takeoff).

Here's the "A" in flight:
Ar 232A in Flight.jpg

A nice shot of the "Millipede" landing gear on an "A":

And a different view of the landing gear on a "B":

Posted by JohnL at January 30, 2005 10:28 PM

Ta, that's one I didn't know about. And I modestly confess that makes it a Rara Avis indeed.

Are you familiar with the XC-8A? I'd give a link, but your comment system doesn't like g-e-o-cities.


And here's a puzzler. Guess what this is.

Posted by: Alan E Brain at February 4, 2005 10:30 AM
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