Junkers Ju 52

infobox Aircraft
name = Junkers Ju 52/3m
type = Military transport aircraft
manufacturer = Junkers

caption =
designer =
first flight = 13 October 1930
introduced = 1931
retired =
status =
primary user = Luftwaffe
more users = Spain France Switzerland
produced = 1931–1945 (German production)
1945–1947 (France)
1945–1952 (Spain)
number built = 4,845
unit cost =
variants with their own articles =
The Junkers Ju 52 (nicknamed "Tante Ju" - "Auntie Ju" - and "Iron Annie") was a transport aircraft and bomber manufactured 1932 – 1945 by Junkers. It saw both civilian and military service during the 1930s and 1940s. In a civilian role, it flew with well over a dozen air carriers including Swissair and Lufthansa as an airliner and freight hauler. In a military role, it flew with the Luftwaffe as a troop and cargo transport, with a secondary role as a medium bomber. The Ju 52 continued in postwar service with military and civilian air fleets well into the 1980s.

Design and development

The Ju 52 was similar to the company's previous Junkers W33, although larger. In 1930, Ernst Zindel and his team designed the Ju 52 at the Junkers works at Dessau. The aircraft's unusual corrugated metal skin strengthened the fuselage and gave it a characteristic boxy appearance.

Operational history

In its original configuration, designated the Ju 52/1m, the Ju 52 was a single-engined aircraft, powered by either a BMW or Junkers liquid-cooled engine. in 1936, James A. Richardson's Canadian Airways received (Werknummer 4006) "CF-ARM" , the sixth ever-built Ju 52. The aircraft, re-engined with a Rolls-Royce Buzzard and nicknamed the "Flying Boxcar" in Canada, [ [http://www.lib.uwo.ca/business/cr-rollsroyce.htm C.B. "Bud" Johnston Library. "Rolls-Royce of Canada Ltd., Montreal Quebec"] ] could lift approximately three tons and had a maximum weight of eight tons. It was used to supply mining and other operations in remote areas with equipment too big and heavy for other aircraft then in use. The Ju 52/1m was able to land on wheels, skis or floats. [http://www.scramble.nl/wiki/index.php?title=Junkers_Ju-52/1m]

However, the single-engine model was underpowered, and after seven prototypes had been completed, all subsequent Ju 52s were built with three engines as the Ju 52/3m (German "drei motoren", meaning "three engines"). Originally powered by three Pratt & Whitney Hornet radial engines, later production models mainly received BMW 132 engines, a refinement of the Pratt & Whitney design. Export models were also built with Pratt & Whitney Wasp and Bristol Pegasus engines. The upgrade improved performance and load carrying abilities. As a Lufthansa airliner, the Ju 52 could seat 17, and could fly from Berlin to Rome in eight hours.

The Ju 52 first saw military service in the Spanish Civil War, as both a bomber and transport aircraft. In the former role it participated in the bombing of Guernica. It was again used as a bomber during the bombing of Warsaw [ [http://www.richmond.edu/~wgreen/ECDwarsaw.html Warsaw] ] during the Invasion of Poland of September 1939. The Luftwaffe then relied on the Ju 52 for transport roles during World War II, including paratroop drops, most notably in the Battle of Crete in May 1941. Lightly armed, and with a top speed of only 165 mph – half that of a contemporary Spitfire – the Ju 52 was very vulnerable to fighter attack and an escort was always necessary when flying in a combat zone. Many Ju 52s were shot down by anti-aircraft guns and fighters while transporting supplies, most notably during the desperate attempt to resupply the trapped German Sixth Army during the final stages of the Battle of Stalingrad in 1943.During the final phase of the North African Campaign 24 of the Junkers were shot down in the infamous "Palm Sunday Massacre" on 18 April 1943, another 35 staggered back to Sicily and crash-landed. The transports' escorts, JG 27 claimed just one enemy fighter [Weal 2003, p. 91.] .

Postwar Use

Various Junkers Ju 52s continued in military and civilian use following World War II. In 1956, the Portuguese Air Force, who was already using the Ju 5s as a transport plane, employed the type as a paratroop drop aircraft for its newly organized elite Parachute Troops School
parachute forces
, later known as the "Batalhão de Caçadores Páraquedistas". The paratroopers used the Ju 52 in several combat operations in Angola and other Portuguese African colonies before gradually phasing it out of service in the 1960s. [Afonso, Aniceto and Gomes, Carlos de Matos, "Guerra Colonial" (2000), ISBN 9724611922 pp. 178-183] The Swiss Air Force also operated the Ju 52, with three machines remaining in operation until the early 1980s.


In addition to the standard, fixed undercarriage version, there was a floatplane version, equipped with two large floats. This model served during the Norwegian Campaign in 1940, and later in the Mediterranean theatre. Some Ju 52 floatplanes were also used as minesweepers, known as "Minensuch" aircraft in German, fitted with a large degaussing ring under the airframe.

Most Ju 52s were destroyed after the war, but a small number were manufactured after 1945. In France the machine was manufactured by Amiot as the Amiot AAC 1 Toucan and in Spain, Construcciones Aeronáuticas SA continued production as the CASA 352. Several Ju 52s are airworthy and in regular use today.


*Junkers Ju 52/3m (CASA 352L) is on display at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center of the National Air & Space Museum in Chantilly, Virginia
*Junkers Ju 52 (CASA 352L) is on display at the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio
*Junkers Ju 52 (CASA 352L) (N352JU) is on display at the CAF Airpower Museum at Midland International Airport near Midland, Texas.

As of 2008, a Ju 52 (CASA 352) remains in operation, providing vintage flights from Dübendorf airport.


;Ju 52:Single-engined transport aircraft.;Ju 52/3m:Three-engined prototype, powered by three 410 kW (550 hp) Pratt & Whitney Hornet engines.;Ju 52/3mce:Three-engined civil transport aircraft.;Ju 52/3mge:Interim bomber and transport aircraft for the Luftwaffe.;Ju 52/3mg3e:Improved military version, powered by three 541 kW (725 hp) B.M.W. 123-A3 radial piston engines, equipped with improved radio and bomb release machanism.;Ju 52/3mg4e:Military version. The tailskid was replaced by a tailwheel.;Ju 52/3mg5e:Military version, powered by three 619 kw (830 hp) B.M.W. 123T radial piston engines. It could be fitted with interchangeable float, ski and wheel landing gear.;Ju 52/3mg6e:Equipped with a simplified radio.;Ju 52/3mg7e:Fitted with autopilot and a large loading hatch.;Ju 52/3mg8e:Fitted with an extra cabin roof hatch.;Ju 52/3mg9e:Late production version, fitted with strengthened landing gear and glider towing gear.;Ju 52/3mg10e:Similar to the Ju 52/3mg9e, but it could be fitted with floats or wheels.;Ju 52/3mg11e:No details are known.;Ju 52/3mg12e:Powered by three B.M.W. 123L radial piston engines.;Ju 52/3m12e:Some Ju 52/3mg12s were sent to Lufthansa.;Ju 52/3mg13e:No details are known.;Ju 52/3mg14e:this was the last production version.


*flagicon|Bulgaria|1878 Bulgaria
*China as ROC
**Colombian Air Force
*flagicon|Croatia|1941 Croatia
*flagicon|Romania Kingdom of Romania
*flag|South Africa|1928
*flagicon|Slovakia|1938 Slovakia
*flagicon|Spain|1939 Spanish State
**Royal Air Force
***No. 173 Squadron RAF
*flag|United States|1912

pecifications (Junkers Ju 52/3m g7e)

aircraft specifications

plane or copter?=plane
jet or prop?=prop
ref=Jane’s Fighting Aircraft of World War II [ Jane 1946, pp. 170–171.]
crew=3 (two pilots, radio operator)
capacity=18 troops or 12 litter patients
length main=18.90 m
length alt=62 ft 0 in
span main=29.25 m
span alt=95 ft 10 in
height main= 4.5 m
height alt= 14 ft 10 in
area main=110.5 m²
area alt=1,190 ft²
empty weight main=6,510 kg
empty weight alt=14,325 lb
loaded weight main=9,200 kg
loaded weight alt=20,270 lb
max takeoff weight main=10,990 kg
max takeoff weight alt=24,200 lb
engine (prop)=BMW 132T
type of prop=radial engines
number of props=3
power main=533 kW
power alt=715 hp
power original=Originally measured as 725 PS]
max speed main=265 km/h
max speed alt=165 mph
max speed more=at sea level
cruise speed main=211 km/h
cruise speed alt=132 mph
range main=870 km
range alt=540 miles
ceiling main=5,490 m
ceiling alt=18,000 ft
climb rate main=17 minutes to 3,050 m
climb rate alt=10,000 ft
loading main=
loading alt=
power/mass main=
power/mass alt=
** 1× 13 mm MG 131 machine gun in a dorsal position
** 2× 7.92 mm MG 15 machine guns
bombs=up to 455 kg (1,000 lb) of bombs (some variants)

ee also

*Junkers Ju 252
*Junkers Ju 352
similar aircraft=
*Douglas DC-3
*Savoia-Marchetti SM.81
see also=
*List of airworthy Ju 52




* Jane, Fred T. "The Junkers Ju 52/3m." "Jane’s Fighting Aircraft of World War II" . London: Studio, 1946. ISBN 1-85170-493-0.
* Weal, John. "Jagdgeschwader 27 'Afrika"'. Oxford, UK: Osprey, 2003. ISBN 1-841765-38-4.

External links

* [http://www.ju52-3m.ch/about.htm www.ju52-3m.ch]
* [http://www.constable.ca/ju52.htm www.constable.ca]
* [http://www.historicflight.co.za/ South African Historic Flight]
* [https://www.dlbs.de/ Deutsche Lufthansa Berlin Stiftung ]

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