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BV 40
Model of a BV 40
Role Fighter glider
Manufacturer Blohm & Voss
First flight 6 May 1944

The Blohm & Voss BV 40 was a German glider fighter designed to attack Allied bomber formations. By eliminating the engine and positioning the pilot in a prone position (i.e., lying on the front), the cross-sectional area of the aircraft was much reduced, making the aircraft much harder for bomber gunners to hit.

Its key features were a very narrow and fairly heavily-armored cockpit, and two 30 mm (1.18 in) MK 108 cannons in the wing roots with very limited ammunition. The fuselage was constructed almost entirely of wood, a non-strategic material. During its short attack time, the glider would fire its weapons, then glide back to earth, although for a time, the idea of carrying a bomb on a cable behind the glider was entertained.

The first flight was in the May of 1944. Several prototypes were completed, but the project was stopped later in the year as the end of the war drew near.



Data from[citation needed]

General characteristics

  • Crew: One pilot
  • Length: 5.70 m (18 ft 8 in)
  • Wingspan: 7.90 m (25 ft 11 in)
  • Height: 1.63 m (5 ft 4 in)
  • Wing area: 8.7 m² (94 ft²)
  • Empty weight: 835 kg (1,840 lb)
  • Gross weight: 950 kg (2,090 lb)


  • Maximum speed: 900 km/h (560 mph)


  • 2 × fixed, forward-firing 30 mm (1.18 in) Rheinmetall Borsig MK 108 cannons (35 rpg)

See also

Related lists





  • Green, William. War Planes of the Second World War, Volume One: Fighters. London: Macdonald & Co.(Publishers) Ltd., 10th impression 1972, p. 78-79. ISBN 0-356-01445-2.
  • Green, William. War Planes of the Third Reich. London: Macdonald and Jane's Publishers Ltd., 4th impression 1979, p. 100-102. ISBN 0-356-02382-6.
  • Smith, J. Richard and Kay, Anthony. German Aircraft of the Second World War. London: Putnam 7 Company Ltd., 3rd impression 1978, p. 84-88. ISBN 0-370-00024-2.
  • Wood, Tony and Gunston, Bill. Hitler's Luftwaffe, a pictorial history and technical encyclopedia of Hitler's air power in World War II. London: Salamander Books, 1977, p. 138. ISBN 0-86101-005-1.


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