Messerschmitt P.08 - Early MRCA ?

Jemiba

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The Messerschmitt P.08 project for a tailless aircraft is featured on quite a lot of sites, like
Luft'46 and so on, but it's nearly almost described as long range/heavy bomber. Reading the
projects description in Luftfahrt International, it actually was intended as a multi role aircraft:

1. Bomber with a bombload of 20.000 kg (to 50.000 kg over shorter distances),delivery up to a dive angle of 90° !
2. Naval combat aircraft. armed with guided bombs and/or torpedoes
3. Long Range recce aircraft with a range of 27.000 km
4. Transport with the capability of carrying 22 t tanks
5. Glider tug
and (most surprising to me)
6. Nightfighter with an armament of four 88 mm AA guns !

A stated advantage of this design was the possibilty to change the "Bombenchassis" (bomb module ?),
a kind of containerised bomb bay, so a quick adaption to another role should have been possible.

The articles in that publication were mostly based on original documents and this one is said to be the
slightly shortened form of the original description by the Messerschmitt AG from 1st of September 1941.
Nevertheless, the very idea of an aircraft with a MTOW of 90.000 kg attacking in a vertical dive, or by
firing four "8-8 Flak" (88 mm AA gun) makes me think, that the Messerschmitt designers and maybe Willy
Messerschmitt himself, had no false modesty !
 

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Arjen

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Jemiba said:
and (most surprising to me)
6. Nightfighter with an armament of four 88 mm AA guns !
German industry turned several bombers into nightfighters: Do 17, Do 217, Ju 88. Nothing new there.

However.

Fitting the 88mm gun to a nightfighter is weird enough, fitting four of them is plain bonkers. *Nice* find.
 

theponja

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Jemiba said:
The Messerschmitt P.08 project for a tailless aircraft is featured on quite a lot of sites, like
Luft'46 and so on, but it's nearly almost described as long range/heavy bomber. Reading the
projects description in Luftfahrt International, it actually was intended as a multi role aircraft:


Jemiba wich issue of Luftfahrt has information about this project?


Jemiba said:
The articles in that publication were mostly based on original documents and this one is said to be the
slightly shortened form of the original description by the Messerschmitt AG from 1st of September 1941.
Nevertheless, the very idea of an aircraft with a MTOW of 90.000 kg attacking in a vertical dive, or by
firing four "8-8 Flak" (88 mm AA gun) makes me think, that the Messerschmitt designers and maybe Willy
Messerschmitt himself, had no false modesty !


Yeahh, really think in this plane doing dive bombing is scary :eek: . They were very confident in their designs.
 

Arjen

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Alcides said:
Jemiba said:
Nevertheless, the very idea of an aircraft with a MTOW of 90.000 kg attacking in a vertical dive, or by
firing four "8-8 Flak" (88 mm AA gun) makes me think, that the Messerschmitt designers and maybe Willy
Messerschmitt himself, had no false modesty !


Yeahh, really think in this plane doing dive bombing is scary :eek: . They were very confident in their designs.
If I remember correctly, the Ju 88, Do 217 and He 177 were designed with dive bombing in mind, although maybe not for vertical diving. Operationally, little use, if any, was made of this ability.
 

Jemiba

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Alcides said:
Jemiba wich issue of Luftfahrt has information about this project?


Sorry, it was N° 2 from 1976.
 

Avimimus

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Do you know how the 88's would be mounted?

Allied night bombers were maneuverable enough that a flexible mounting would've been exceptionally important.
 

Arjen

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The 88mm gun was several metres in length, putting that in a flexible mounting would have interesting consequences for aircraft trim when the gun was tracking its target. Then there is the matter of recoil of such a big gun - troublesome enough when firing in the line of flight. Most kills by night fighters were made with fixed guns, either firing straight ahead or obliquely upwards.

On the other hand, once you are crazy enough to propose mounting four whacking big 88s, why not go the whole hog and put them in flexible mountings?
 

Avimimus

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Exactly - once someone has proposed a 90 ton flying wing dive bomber - all bets are off.
 

Justo Miranda

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Düka 88 here
 

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Jemiba

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Avimimus said:
Exactly - once someone has proposed a 90 ton flying wing dive bomber - all bets are off.

Had another look at the tables, empty weight was just 30.000 kg, but fuel weight was up to 40.0000 kg
and payload 20.000 kg. So, using full combat radius it would have just attacked with a weight of around
70.000 kg ...
About the 88 mm gun, perhaps we should remember, that the Ju 88P and even the much smaller HS 129
were fitted with a 75 mm gun. I would think, that the four guns in the P.08 would have been fixed for forward
firing. Maybe multiple guns were just chosen to increase rate of fire ?
Honestly, this article had still yet escaped my notice and when reading it, I had severe doubts about its credibility.
But the article actually seems to be based on a Messerschmitt design description (the design itself can be found in
several different publications), but to my opinion it was a kind of "public relations effort" for a tailless design.
The structural weight is said to be 30% less, than for a conventional design, and drag is much less, too. The massive
wing would be very rugged, the pusher props would be more efficient and allow the mentioned dive bombing attacks.
The description is full of those advantages and comparisons with conventional designs, often not even related to
the design itself. So I think, the Messerschmitt AG tried in first place to have a foothold for a tailless aircraft.
 

Archibald

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You don't understand the real purpose of the 4*88mm guns.
The four guns were to be used as dive brakes. Their recoil should get the bomber out of its dive pretty efficiently. ;D
 

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We should petition for this design to be implemented in world of warplanes. ;D
 

blackkite

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Hi!
 

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