Sakhalia NetHistory of the RailwayGraphics DivisionBaykal.esAcceptance of cookiesAcceptance of cookies

You are logged off and have no access to the contents of this section!

Please log in or register. Or you may alternatively visit the articles list to search for more content.

DISCLAIMER: This website discourages its users from submitting duplicated content. If this article contains such and you, the visitor, are the creator of the original content, please report it to the administrator of this website instead of reporting the website itself. You can send a report if you are a registered user or alternatively use the e-mail address provided at the bottom of the Privacy Policy.

Junkers Ju 87


By Sakhal

The Junkers Ju 87, commonly known as "Stuka" - abbreviation of Sturzkampfflugzeug (dive combat aircraft) - had its baptism of fire in the Spanish Civil War. Dive bomber whose precision became legendary, it was fitted with a siren called "Trumpet of Jericho" that emitted during the dive a frightening wheezing able to make plummet the aplomb of even the anti-aircraft gunners. As payload it could carry, according to necessity, between 250 and 1000 kilograms of bombs in the version Ju 87B-2. However, this aircraft soon exposed its limitations. Slow, with little maneuverability and scarce capacity for self-defense, the Ju 87 still had an advantage: its solidity was such that it could resist impacts that would be fatal for the most part of the aircraft of its kind that served during the Second World War. One of the last versions, the Ju 87G, was fitted with two 37-millimeter anti-tank cannons instead of the habitual armament of two 7.92-millimeter machine guns in the wings. With a Stuka armed like that, firing projectiles with a core of very hard tungsten to increase the penetration power, Major Hans Ulrich Rudel - allegedly - destroyed in the Eastern Front 519 Soviet tanks. The Stuka, produced in 5709 exemplars and a large number of variants, fought practically in every front until the last days of the conflict.

Junkers Ju 87


Junkers Ju 87


Ju 87A, B, C and R

The first prototype (V1) of the Ju 87 was fitted with the engine Rolls-Royce Kestrel V of 640 horsepower and twin tail plane. The subsequent prototypes V2 and V3 were fitted with the engine Junkers Jumo 210Aa of 610 horsepower and a single tail plane. The series prototype V4 had enlarged tail planes and one MG 17 7.92-millimeter machine gun in the right wing. The preseries model A-0 was fitted with the engine Jumo 210Ca of 640 horsepower, simplified wings and one MG 15 7.92-millimeter machine gun in the rear cockpit; this configuration remained untouched for the series model A-1; ten exemplars were built. The model A-2 was an improvement of the A-1, fitted with the engine Jumo 210Da of 680 horsepower. Of the versions A-1 and A-2 were produced about 200 exemplars, which served only with the Luftwaffe, albeit Japan made an evaluation of them. The prototype V6 - modification from an A-1 - served as test bench of engines Jumo 211A. The prototype V7 - modification from an A-2 - was fitted with the engine Jumo 211A, redesigned canopy, enlarged tail plane and modified fairing of the main landing gear; this configuration remained untouched for the preseries model B-0, of which ten exemplars were built. The series model B-1 was fitted with the more powerful engine Jumo 211Da and an additional MG 17 machine gun in the left wing; this version was built by Junkers and Weser. The variant B-1/U2 had improved radio equipment. Of the versions B-1 and B-1/U2 were produced about 350 exemplars; the versions Ju 87B served with Germany, Italy, Romania and Hungary. The model B-2 was an improvement of the B-1 allowing a maximum bombs load of 1000 kilograms; some exemplars were tropicalized; this version was built by Weser. The variants B-2/U2, U3 and U4 had improved radio equipment, additional armor and ski skids, respectively. The preseries model C-0 was a navalized version for use in aircraft carriers, fitted with foldable wings, anchor points for catapults, arresting hook and detachable landing gear. Of the series model C-1 no exemplar was completed and this version was converted into the B-2. The R-1 - modification from the B-2 - was the long-range version for attacking naval targets, fitted with fuel tanks under the wings and armed with one 250-kilogram bomb. The R-2 was a modification from the R-1 with small changes in the equipment. The versions of Ju 87R served with Germany and Bulgaria.

The Stuka became a sort of synonim of the Blitzkrieg campaigns of 1939-40. The prototype flew in 1935 and the version Ju 87A-1 entered service in the spring 1937, being sent three exemplars to the Condor Legion in Spain at the end of the same year. All the aircraft of the version A had been retired from service in the frontline at the start of the Second World War. After having fought with the Condor Legion in October 1938, the Ju 87B-1 became the prime dive bomber in the ranks of the Luftwaffe, equipping the total of nine Stukagruppen (342 aircraft) at the start of the Second World War. It played an important - perhaps decisive - role in the campaigns of Poland and France, while in Norway only one Gruppe took action, equipped with Ju 87R of long range, suffering the first setbacks in the encounters with the Royal Air Force in the English Channel and at the beginning of the Battle of Britain, being so withdrawn from this theater of operations. The Ju 87B reappeared at the beginning of 1941 in the Mediterranean, acting firstly against Allied ships and later in the campaigns of the Balkans, Crete and North Africa (in particular in Bir Hacheim and Tobruk), as well as in the attacks against Malta, operating with both the German and Italian aviations. The 22nd June 1941, starting the invasion of the Soviet Union, the forces of the Axis counted with nine Stukagruppen - including a Romanian one - with a total of 361 aircraft, which due to the little opposition presented by the Soviet aviation, achieved again clamorous successes, before being replaced by the first Ju 87D towards the end of that year.

Specifications for Ju 87A-1

First flight: 1936

Wingspan: 13.80 meters

Wing area: 31.90 square meters

Length: 10.78 meters

Height: 3.89 meters

Weight (empty): 2315 kilograms

Weight (full load): 3400 kilograms

Payload: 1085 kilograms

Crew: 2

Engine: Junkers Jumo 210Ca of 640 horsepower

Service ceiling: 7000 meters

Maximum speed at 3700 meters of altitude: 320 kilometers/hour

Cruising speed: 275 kilometers/hour

Operational range: 1000 kilometers

Defensive armament: One MG 17 7.92-millimeter machine gun in the right wing and one MG 15 7.92-millimeter machine gun in an orientable mounting shooting backwards

Bombs load: 250 kilograms



Specifications for Ju 87B-1

First flight: 1938

Wingspan: 13.80 meters

Wing area: 31.90 square meters

Length: 11.10 meters

Height: 4.01 meters

Weight (empty): 2710 kilograms

Weight (full load): 4340 kilograms

Payload: 1630 kilograms

Crew: 2

Engine: Junkers Jumo 211Da of 1200 horsepower

Time to reach 2000 meters of altitude: 4 minutes 18 seconds

Service ceiling: 8000 meters

Maximum speed at sea level: 340 kilometers/hour

Maximum speed at 4100 meters of altitude: 385 kilometers/hour

Cruising speed: 280 kilometers/hour

Operational range: 790 kilometers

Defensive armament: Two MG 17 7.92-millimeter machine guns in the wings and one MG 15 7.92-millimeter machine gun in an orientable mounting shooting backwards

Bombs load: 500 kilograms



Ju 87D, E, F, G, H and Ju 187

The D-1 was the version for dive bombing and tactical support, an improved B-2, fitted with the engine Jumo 211J-1 of 1400 horsepower, with redesigned engine cover and cockpit canopy, simplified landing gear, enlarged tail planes, increased armor and fuel capacity; armed with two MG 17 7.92-millimeter machine guns in the wings and two MG 17 or MG 81 of the same caliber in the rear cockpit; some exemplars were tropicalized. The model D-2 was a modification of the D-1 with reinforced fuselage and hook for towing gliders. The D-3 was the ground-strike version, similar to the D-1, with increased armor. The D-4 was a projected version of a torpedo plane, made from conversions of the D-1 and D-3, later reconverted to the original model. The model D-5 had larger wingspan, detachable landing gear and absence of dive brakes. The D-7 was the nocturnal ground-strike version, a modification of the D-3 and D-5, fitted with engine Jumo 211P of 1500 horsepower, equipment for nocturnal flight and flame arresters in the exhaust tubes; the two MG 17 machine guns of the wings were replaced by two MG 151 20-millimeter cannons. The D-8 was a simplified version of the D-7, without equipment for nocturnal flight or flame arresters. The versions of Ju 87D were manufactured by Junkers and Weser. The model E was a project for a navalized version derived from the model D. The model F was a projected modification of the model D with larger wingspan and engine Jumo 213 of 1750 horsepower. The model G-1 was a conversion from the D-5, armed with two BK 3.7 (Flak 18) 37-millimeter anti-tank cannons installed in gondolas under the wings. The models H-1, H-3, H-5, H-7 and H-8 were conversions, with dual control for training purposes, of the original models D-1, D-3, D-5, D-7 and D-8, respectively; they had also modified rear cockpit and no armament or bomb holders. The Ju 187 was a project for a modified Ju 87F, fitted with engine Jumo 213A of 1776 horsepower, retractable landing gear and modified wings.

The Ju 87D entered service in the late 1941 and despite being better in many aspects than previous versions, it could not keep the good reputation acquired by those, since it had to face the growing Allied air superiority, so after some months it was withdrawn from diurnal missions, with the exception of some fronts in which the Luftwaffe still kept a certain superiority. It was used mainly in the Eastern Front, as well as in North Africa and the war theaters of Italy and the eastern Mediterranean. From 1943 it equipped in increasing numbers the nocturnal attack Gruppen in the Eastern Front, the Balkans and Italy, and particularly the anti-tank version Ju 87G operated until the end of the war against the Soviet armored forces. The largest part of the exemplars used by the allies of the Axis, were employed in Russia and particularly the ones delivered to Romania in 1943, were used later against the Germans after signing that country the Armistice, and some captured by the German forces were in turn used to attack targets held by their former users.

Junkers Ju 87

Junkers Ju 87D-7 (HH) from the 1./NSGr.9; Casselle Torino, northwest of Italy, April 1944. The camouflage of the aircraft dedicated to nocturnal ground attacks was constituted by an irregular grey line drawn in a dotted or nebular shape over the habitual scheme in two tones of green. Note the tips of the wings of larger wingspan, the flame arresters in the engine exhausts and the receptacle for flares Mk 250Bk in the ventral bombs holder.

Junkers Ju 87

The Ju 87 was becoming obsolete towards 1944 for its original role of tactical bomber and because of this it was shifted to a ground attack role. The version Ju 87G, known as "Stuka Kanone", armed with two 37-millimeter cannons mounted in gondolas hanging under the wings, proved to be very effective against the columns of Soviet armored vehicles that approached Germany.

Specifications for Ju 87D-1

First flight: 1941

Wingspan: 13.80 meters

Wing area: 31.90 square meters

Length: 11.50 meters

Height: 3.88 meters

Weight (empty): 3900 kilograms

Weight (full load): 6600 kilograms

Payload: 2669 kilograms

Crew: 2

Engine: Junkers Jumo 211J-1 of 1400 horsepower

Time to reach 5000 meters of altitude: 19 minutes 48 seconds

Service ceiling: 7300 meters

Maximum speed at 4100 meters of altitude: 410 kilometers/hour

Cruising speed: 285 kilometers/hour

Operational range: 1535 kilometers

Defensive armament: Two MG 17 7.92-millimeter machine guns in the wings and two MG 81Z 7.92-millimeter machine guns in an orientable mounting shooting backwards

Bombs load: 1800 kilograms



Specifications for Ju 87D-7

First flight: 1942

Wingspan: 15 meters

Wing area: 33.68 square meters

Length: 11.13 meters

Height: 4.24 meters

Weight (empty): 3938 kilograms

Weight (full load): 6607 kilograms

Payload: 2669 kilograms

Crew: 2

Engine: Junkers Jumo 211P of 1500 horsepower

Service ceiling: 7500 meters

Maximum speed at 4100 meters of altitude: 410 kilometers/hour

Cruising speed: 285 kilometers/hour

Operational range: 1585 kilometers

Defensive armament: Two MG 151 20-millimeter cannons in the wings and two MG 15 7.92-millimeter machine guns in an orientable mounting shooting backwards

Bombs load: 1800 kilograms





Article updated: 2015-07-07

Categories: Aircraft - World War Two - 20th Century - [General] - [General]

E-mail:

Website: Military History

Article submitted: 2014-10-22


This article has been seen/reloaded times since 2017-03-05 (or since publishing date).

This article has been voted 0 times.

You are logged off and have no access to the contents of this section!