Albatros D.III

By a late 1916 captured French Nieuport 11, the company Albatros Flugzeugwerke GmbH developed the Albatros D.III, which became in the course of the war one of the most used German fighters.


Development and construction:

At the end of 1916, a French Nieuport had to make an emergency landing of 11, thereby falling into the hands of the German army. The inspection of the Air Force seized the aircraft and made it available to the German aircraft manufacturers in order to orient themselves on this and to develop an equal aircraft.

Also the company Albatros Flugzeugwerke GmbH got access to the captured machine, but unlike other manufacturers, she did not copy the aircraft, but combined the Albatros D.II with the design advantages of the French aircraft.

In the resulting Albatros D.III finally only the feature of the narrower lower wing was taken over, in order to allow the pilot a better view and to make the aircraft in turning more agile.

The major disadvantage of the aircraft, however, proved the stiffness of the lower wing, which began to flutter at high load such as the dive or the flight of tight turns and partly went to break. This defect could not be remedied by the manufacturer until the end of the war.


Albatros D.III


Albatros D.III


Ernst Udet in front of his Albatros D.III


Recovery of a wounded pilot from an albatross D.III




Use in the First World War:

From January 1917, the first aircraft of the type were brought to the Western Front and used. These were superior to the Allied airmen and so could be achieved in the following months, the air sovereignty again. Especially in April 1917, the German airmen were able to achieve great success and shoot down 151 British aircraft alone. Manfred von Richthofen also won most of his kills with his Albatros D.III.

In addition to the German army, the Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Air Forces used these aircraft until the end of the war at the front.

After the war, mainly Austrian aircraft went to the new Polish Air Force, which also used this successfully in the Polish-Russian War.


A crashed Albatros D.III in Flanders


Albatros D.III planes of the 11th squadron at Douai in France

Albatros D.III planes of the 11th squadron at Douai in France




Technical specifications:

Designation: Albatros D.III
Country: German Empire
Typ: Fighter plane
Length: 7,33 meters
Span: 9,05 meters
Height: 2,98 meters
Mass: 661kg empty
Crew: Max. 1
Engine: Water-cooled 6-cylinder inline engine Mercedes D IIIa 175 hp
Maximum speed: 165 km/h
Reach: 330 kilometers
Armament: 2 x synchronized machine guns 7,92 mm LMG 08/15






You can find the right literature here:


Fokker Dr I Aces of World War 1 (Aircraft of the Aces)

Fokker Dr I Aces of World War 1 (Aircraft of the Aces) Paperback – Bargain Price, August 25, 2001

Undoubtedly the most famous fighter type to see service on either side during World War 1, the Fokker Dr I was a revelation when it entered service on the western front in 1917. Manfred von Richthofen’s JG 1 ‘circus’ was the first Jasta to completely re-equip with the new fighter, and in the skilled hands of its numerous aces the Dr I proved a formidable opponent. The Dr I remained in service on the Western Front until replaced by the superior Fokker D VII in May 1918. Just weeks prior to that, however, Germany’s leading ace, the great ‘Red Baron’, had been killed at the controls of a Dr I.

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Friedrichshafen Aircraft of WWI: A Centennial Perspective on Great War Airplanes (Great War Aviation) (Volume 21)

Friedrichshafen Aircraft of WWI: A Centennial Perspective on Great War Airplanes (Great War Aviation) (Volume 21) Paperback – February 16, 2016

This book describes and illustrates the development of Friedrichshafen aircraft of WWI with text, 540 photos, 18 in color, 37 color profiles, production quantities and serial numbers of aircraft, and aircraft dimensions and performance specifications. In addition, there are 26 official SVK drawings and 11 aircraft are illustrated in scale drawings to 1/48 (4) or 1/72 (7) scales. The book has 312 pages and is of interest to aviation historians, enthusiasts, and modelers alike.

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German and Austro-Hungarian Aircraft Manufacturers 1908-1918

German and Austro-Hungarian Aircraft Manufacturers 1908-1918 Paperback – December 15, 2010

Much has been written about the British aircraft of the First World War, but little has surfaced about the aircraft of the Axis powers, Germany and Austria. Here, Terry C. Treadwell tells the story of the aircraft from companies such as Fokker, builder of the famous triplane, as fl own by Baron von Richthofen's Flying Circus, AEG, Albatros, Junkers and Hansa. From reconnaissance aircraft to state-of-the-art bombers that could reach London, this is the definitive guide to aircraft of the Axis powers during the First World War. The aircraft are explained in detail and a history of each company is provided, making this an excellent source book for aircraft enthusiasts, model makers and those interested in the air war over the trenches of France and Belgium, as well as further afield in the Italian campaign.

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The Zeppelin in Combat: A History of the German Naval Airship Division

The Zeppelin in Combat: A History of the German Naval Airship Division Hardcover – January 9, 1997

The standard reference now revised and expanded. Dr. Robinson has opened up his vast photo archives to enhance this new edition of his classic work. Much of the new photographic material is published here for the first time.

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