Messerschmitt Me 262

The twin-engined Messerschmitt Me 262 was the world’s first fully operational jet aircraft. With its speed and four 30-millimetre nose-mounted cannon, it was a formidable weapon and bombers were easy targets. Several Australian bombers recorded encounters with the jets; remarkably, an Australian Spitfire pilot shot one down. It was the decision to develop the aircraft as a fighter-bomber that delayed large-scale production and reduced its impact on the course of the war. The Allies also had a jet aircraft: the British introduced the Gloster Meteor before the end of the war.

Messerschmitt Me 262A Sturmvogel

Messerschmitt Me 262A Sturmvogel
Manufacturer Messerschmitt at Regensburg-Obertraubling, Germany
Type Fighter-bomber
Wingspan 12.5 metres
Length 10.6 metres
Powerplant Two Junkers Jumo 109-004B axial-flow turbojets
Armament Four 30-millimetre cannon; one 500-kilogram (or two 250-kilogram) bomb(s)
Crew One
Colour scheme Layers of paint reveal the original 1945 German paint work applied in a thin coat with the black “X” unit marking; the 1945 British Air Ministry markings (“P” for prototype and “AIR MIN 81”); and a 1950s RAAF over-paint.

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