Thursday, 3 March 2011

Unknown Soviet type/project (Ju 287, EF 122, 131 and EF 140)

Photo/postcard on sale here

'Unknown' type/design/project presumably based on Junkers high-speed bomber research. Note the nose/fuselage profile similarity to the Ju 188/288 fuselage model. According to Ransom/Korrell/Evans in 'Junkers Ju 287-Germany's forward swept wing bomber' (Classic 2008), Junkers had started wind tunnel testing on swept wing configurations in early 1943 but had concluded on balance that the application of the forward swept wing offered less risk than the use of swept-back wings. The little-known EF 116 project compared both wing profile characteristics leading to the selection of forward sweep. Note that this was to be a smaller aircraft than its successor the EF 122, later to be given the RLM designation Ju 287.  With the handover of Dessau and other Junkers factories to Soviet control, construction of the Ju 287 - in particular the Ju 287 V-3 - was continued, with the project being re-designated EF 131. Both the EF 131 and the later EF 140 featured swept forward wings. The last of the EF 140 variants was the Type 140 b high speed bomber, an aircraft which was to be powered by two jet engines only. A further development was the Type 150 proposed in 1947 with either forward or sweptback wings.