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German anti-tank/anti-aircraft missiles

Discussion in 'Wonder Weapons' started by Sniper, Jan 4, 2003.

  1. Sniper

    Sniper Member

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    Over the Christmas break I managed to get in a bit of reading, and came up with some interesting information on German rocket and missile projects.

    Enzian

    Designed by Dr Wurster's team at Messerschmidt, the Enzian was originally conceived as a subsonic ground-to-air rocket, with the prospect of further development into a supersonic air-to-air missile, as well as a ground-to-ground, and anti-tank missile.

    Compared to other German missiles, Enzian was an exceptionally powerful weapon, carrying a 1,000 lb warhead that could be fitted with a variety of proximity fuzes. It was to be powered by four Rheinmetal-Borsig solid fuel booster rockets on takeoff, with the main rocket engine being a bi-fuel Walther design using turbine pumps to supply the Benzene fuel and Nitric Acid oxidizer.

    The missile was to be fired from the standard 88mm anti-aircraft gun mounting, to which two, 7 metre long, launching rails were added.

    to be constructed of compressed wood or laminated wood, due to the shortage of vital materials, the Enzian measured approx 4 metres in length, with a total weight of 1,800 kg.

    Guidance for the missile was to be by radio link, with the operator using either optical or radar tracking to maneuver the missile into the target area, where upon either an infra-red homing device (Madrid), acoustic homing head (Archimedes) or radar homing head (Moritz), would take over control and guide the missile to the target.

    Testing and development began in June 1943, under the designation FR (Flak Rakete), and several FR designs were constructed until the missile was given the designation "Enzian" in January 1944.

    Enzian-5 was to be the most advanced design of the later series, projected as capable of reaching Mach 1.6 or even Mach 2, with a ceiling of 52,000 feet.

    In all 60 Enzians were built, with 38 Enzian-1’s being test launched, 16 under radio control.

    The project came to an official halt in January 1945, when orders were received to concentrate all available effort on more promising projects, however, work actually continued while several parties, including Professor Messerschmidt, attempted to have the project officially re-started. These attempts at continued development of Enzian failed and the project was finally wound up in March 1945.

    Fleigerfaust (also sometimes referred to as Luftfaust)

    A nine barrelled, 20mm, hand held rocket launcher developed for ground defence against low flying aircraft.

    The projectile was a standard 20mm high explosive/incendiary round attached to a steel tube containing a solid fuel propellant. Electrically ignited, the rocket motor vented through 4 angled ports in the base of the tube, giving the projectile spin for stability as well as forward thrust. The standard round achieved a velocity of 380 metres per second, spinning at 26,000 revolutions a minute, with an effective range of about 500 metres, and maximum range of about 2,000 metres.

    The projector was a fairly simple device, consisting of nine light, metal tubes fitted in a circular array on a shoulder stock, with a pistol grip and a trigger incorporating a magneto firing generator, similar to a Panzerschreck. The rounds were provided in clips of nine, matching the barrel layout, and could be loaded as one.

    The firing sequence was automatically set to fire five rockets immediately on pressing the trigger, with the other four rockets being delayed one-tenth of a second so that the rockets were launched without their exhausts interfering with one another.

    It was projected that several thousand Fleigerfausts would be manufactured during March/April 1945, but at wars end, only a few examples were found by the Allies.

    Kurzzeitsperre

    Developed by Rheinmetal-Borsig, as a method of preventing low flying attacks on gun batteries, airfields and other ground installations, the Kurzzeitsperre consisted of a battery of rocket projectors spaced about 30 metres apart around the perimeter of the installation. The projectile was a simple rocket, trailing a length of hardened steel wire, 1.8mm wide and 0.7 mm thick, which was attached to the ground projector.

    When the battery was electrically fired en masse, the rockets rose to a height of 1,000 metres and burst open, releasing a parachute, to which the wire was attached. The parachute would then drift slowly back to earth. When a low flying aircraft hit the wire, the wire would spin and saw it’s way through the aircraft. Tests showed that the spinning wire could cut through an average aircraft wing in less than a second.

    A smaller version, using a standard mortar round as propulsion, was also developed. This version had a maximum height of 300 metres.

    Mowe

    A remote controlled, anti-aircraft rocket for use on small and medium-sized ships against low flying aircraft. Development of the Mowe rocket began in May 1944, and production drawings were ready by August the same year, the designers having had previous experience in the development of other rockets and missiles such as the Hs-293, Rheinbote and Rheintochter.

    Compared to these other devices, Mowe was to be cheap and simple to produce and use.

    Guidance was to be by optical tracking and radio. The missile weighed in at about 90 kg, and was powered by a two-stage solid fuel motor, carrying a 12 kg high explosive warhead fitted with a Kugelblitz proximity fuze. It had an effective range of about 2,000 metres.

    As with other development projects it appears that Mowe was abandoned in late 1944 in favour of other more promising developments.

    Pfeifenkopf (also called Pinsel)

    Conceived as an anti-tank guided missile using a visual homing system based on the principle of television. The missile was to carry a super-iconoscope in it’s head using a spiral scanning method, which compared the missile’s own target image with that from it’s aiming device. The crude imaging system using as it's basis the target’s contrast with it’s background.

    Unfortunately, due to the crude technology in use, this method demanded that a very sharp contrast had to exist between the target and the background, something that could never be guaranteed on the battlefield.

    Tests carried out in late 1944, however, proved the system fairly successful, and it was proposed that development of Pfeifenkopf should also include a capacity for air-launching as an air-to-ground missile for tank hunting.

    Pfeifenkopf weighed about 25 kg, and had a projected range of a little over 1,000 metres.

    The Pfeifenkopf project also led to another anti-tank missile proposal, Steinbocke, which was very similar in design, but used an infra-red homing device instead of the visual homing of Pfeifenkopf.

    Taifun

    Development of this free-flight anti-aircraft rocket began in mid 1944, with the designs being submitted to the Reishluftfahtministerium in September ’44, accepted and frozen for manufacture in October ’44.

    Testing and development of both solid fuel and liquid fuel versions of Taifun was carried out at Peenemunde, with actual production beginning in January 1945, with an order for 10,000 units, of which 600 were built before the end of the war.

    The intention was to have over 400 Taifun batteries, each of 12 projectors, in action by September 1945, each projector to be a converted 88mm anti-aircraft gun mounting carrying 30 rockets.

    The standard production version of the Taifun, was approximately 2 metres in length, 10cm in width, weighed about 20 kg, and was fitted with a contact fuzed warhead, weighing about half a kilo. The rockets’ rate of ascent was in excess of 3000 feet per second and it had an operational ceiling of 50,000 feet.

    The rocket would have proven a very cheap (the whole device costing about 25 Reischmarks) and effective anti-aircraft weapon.

    I'd be interested if anyone had any info on whether these weapons, especially the Fleigerfaust were actually used. I have only seen two fuzzy photos of this weapon in very old books, which looks a bit like 9 US 3inch bazookas in a circle, fired from the shoulder.

    ___________

    "We have invaded space with our rocket and for the first time - mark this well - have used space as a bridge between two points on the earth; we have proved rocket propulsion practicable for space travel. This third day of October, 1942, is the first of a new era of transportation, that of space travel." - General Walter Dornberger
     
  2. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Thank you very Much, Sniper! Incredible...

    Let´s see what pics we find in the net first!

    [​IMG]

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    Enzian

    First Launch: August, 1944
    Number Produced: 60+

    Dimensions:
    Length: 4 Meters
    Span: 4 Meters
    Maximum Diameter, fuselage: 0.88 meter
    Root Thickness: 20% Root Chord
    Tip Thickness: 10% Root Chord
    Wing Area: 5 Square Meters
    Airfoil: NACA symmetrical; no twist
    Dihedral: Zero
    Chord Root: 1.25 meters
    Chord Tip: 0.98 meters
    Sweepback: 30 degrees
    Weights:
    Complete: 1,800 kg.
    Empty, including Warhead: 833 kg.
    Warhead: 500 kg.
    Aerodynamic Peculiarities And Characteristics:
    Aerodynamically the E-4 appear normal. Its stability in flight was accepted as good.
    Performance Specifications:
    Maximum Velocity:
    Conrad Powerplant: 300 m/sec
    Walther Powerplant: 240 m/sec
    End speed launching: 24 m/sec
    Minimum speed for safe control: 55 m/sec

    [​IMG]

    http://www.warbirdsresourcegroup.org/LRG/enzian.html

    ;)
     
  3. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    [​IMG]

    Model of Rheinbote in the net

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    Wasserfall

    The Wasserfall missile was developed at Peenemünde concurrently with the V-2 missile, and was one of the earliest attempts to develop a guided anti-aircraft missile. A supersonic missile, it would reach speeds of 770 m/s (about 1700 mph). Guidance was to be a combination of radar and radio control, with an operator on the ground steering it toward the radar return of enemy bombers. An acoustic proximity fuse would detonate the warhead when it got close enough to its target.

    [​IMG]

    German plan to protect some 70 cities with a fourfold belt of antiaircraft rocket batteries.

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    dated April 30, 1943, calling for Wasserfall launch complexes with four pads each. Blast deflection walls can be seen around each pad

    http://www.netaxs.com/people/ebailey/wasserfall.html


    http://www.worldwar.nl/secretweapons/secretgerman2.htm
     
  4. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    [​IMG]

    Wasserfall cutaway

    [​IMG]

    bombproof shelters that would house 63 Wasserfall missiles inside 12 feet of concrete.

    [​IMG]

    Photos of the Wasserfall Missile at the U. S. Army Ordnance Museum at Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Maryland

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    Hmmmm people are quite attracted to building small V2´s etc...

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    Great pic of a V2 model!The model flew to a height of 200 meters!

    http://www.v2rocket.com/start/scale/gallery.html
     
  5. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Hs-117 Schmetterling

    [​IMG]


    Hs 117 Schmetterling

    Of all the experimental German anti-aircraft missiles of World War II, the Hs 117 Schmetterling (originally designated the Hs 297) came closest to deployment. Mass production was ordered in December 1944, with deployment to begin in March 1945, but the plans were quite unrealistic, as was typical of the desperation programs of the last year of the Third Reich. The Schmetterling had its origin in 1941, when Prof. Dr. Herbert Wagner, the talented missile designer also responsible for the Hs 293 air-to-ground missile mostly used against ships, proposed a number of anti-aircraft projects. It was not until early 1943 that the Air Ministry issued the contract to Henschel Aircraft. The Hs 117 was fueled by a combination of nitric acid and Tonka, a mixed hydrocarbon fuel, and was boosted by two solid-fuel Schmidding rocket units, one each above and below on the missile. Guidance was by radio-control from an operator with a telescopic sight and joy-stick. The boosters are missing from the Museum's artifact, which was acquired from the U.S. Army Ordnance Museum at Aberdeen, Maryland, in 1988. Also missing is the warhead cone.

    Construction:

    The missile is aircraft-shaped with sweptback wings and cruciform tail, and has an asymmetrical nose with warhead extension on one side and a shorter extension on the other with a wind-driven generator propeller. The missile does not have regular control surfaces, but instead uses spoilers known as "Wagner bars" on the trailing edges of the wings and tailplane.

    Length: 429 cm (14 ft. 1 in)(with warhead)
    Diameter of fuselage: 35 cm (1 ft 1.75 in.)
    Wingspan: 200 cm (6 ft 6.75 in.)
    Weight, loaded: 420 kg (924 lb.)
    Explosive wt.: 100 kg (220 lbs.)
    Maximum speed: Mach 0.77
    Range: 32km (20 mi.) with a ceiling of 10,000 m (32,800 ft.)

    History:

    Beginning in May 1944, 59 experimental launchings were made at Karlshagen, near Peenemuende. The Hs 117 normally used the BMW 109-558 rocket motor of 375 kg (825 lbs.) thrust for 33 seconds which fell to 60 kg (132 lbs.) over the last 24 seconds. The propellants were R-Stoff or Tonka, a mixed hydrocarbon fuel, and nitric acid. The propellants were fed into the combustion chamber by gaseous pressure and were hypergolic, or self-igniting. The two Schmidding 109-553 solid-fuel boosters weighed 170 kg (374 lb.) total, and produced 1,750 kg (3,850 lbs.) thrust each for four seconds.

    There were several variants, including the the Hs 117H, the only known air-launched version. Designed for use from the Do 217, Ju 188, and Ju 388 aircraft, the Hs 117H had a truncated top tailfin and no boosters. Twenty-one flight tests were conducted from a Do 217, with only 15 being satisfactory. Development of the Hs 117-H ended in February, 1945. A standard Revi reflector sight was to be used for sighting the missile, while guidance was accomplished with conventional radio-link and line-of-sight by the pilot of the carrier plane. There were plans to install a homing device and proximity fuse in the missile, but this never materialized and detonations were normally activated by a radio signal. The Hs 117-H was designed to attack an enemy aircraft up to 5,000 m (16,400 ft) above the carrier aircraft.

    References:

    Gunston, Bill. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of the World's Rockets & Missiles (New York: Crescent Books, 1979), 148-149.

    Hogg, I.V. German Secret Weapons of World War 2 (New York: Arco Publishing Co, 1970), 22-23.

    Ley, Willy. Rockets, Missiles, and Space Travel (New York: The Viking Press, 1959), 225.

    Ordway, Frederick I., III, and Ronald C. Wakeford, International Missile and Spacecraft Guide (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1960), 93-94, 133.

    Smith, J.R., and Antony L. Kay, German Aircraft of the Second World War (London: Putnam, 1972), 688-691

    http://www.nasm.si.edu/nasm/dsh/artifacts/RM-Hs117.htm
     
  6. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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  7. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Other interesting rocket stuff...

    Bv-246

    Mission: Long Range Glided Bomb
    Development-Country-Name: Germany
    Deployment-Country-Name: Not deployed
    Development Year: 1944
    Deployment Year: Not deployed

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    http://www.luft46.com/jhart/jh204.html

    Hs-117 Schmetterling

    Mission: Surface-to-Air Missile
    Development-Country-Name: Germany
    Deployment-Country-Name: Not deployed
    Development Year: 1943
    Deployment Year: Not deployed
    Warhead 25kg
    Guidance Optical targeting and wireless guidance
    Propulsion Liquid, solid
    Range 32km
    No. of Manufacture 60 manufactured, 25 test launched


    Hs-293 Family

    Mission: Air-to-Ship Gliding Guided Bomb
    Development-Country-Name: Germany
    Deployment-Country-Name: Germany
    Development Year: 1940
    Deployment Year: 1943
    Guidance Wireless guidance
    Propulsion Liquid
    Range 16km
    No. of Manufacture Several thousands(about 2,300 was used on operational

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Hs-298

    Mission: Air-to-Air Missile
    Development-Country-Name: Germany
    Deployment-Country-Name: Canceled
    Development Year: 1943
    Deployment Year: Canceled
    Warhead 25kg
    Guidance Wireless command (joystick)
    Propulsion Solid
    Range 1,600m
    No. of Manufacture 300

    [​IMG]


    Rheintochter I/III
    Development Year: 1942(I), 1945(III)
    Warhead(kg) 100 (I) 415 (III)
    Guidance Wireless
    Propulsion 2-stage (I)solid 2-stage solid (liquid sustainer,too, on III )
    Range(km) 12(I) 35 (III)
    No. of Deployment 82 test fire (I,III)
    Contractor Rheinmetall-Borsig
    ---------

    pics site:

    http://airpower.callihan.cc/HTML/Planes/mrb.htm
     
  8. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Eh, one question as well...

    To begin with I was quite interested to learn of a rocket "Do" which seems to be launched from a sub. Failed to find much information today, at least.But wonder if someone else knows already of its fate?

    :confused:
     
  9. Sniper

    Sniper Member

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    Great pics Kai. When you consider that the majority of todays missiles are direct descendants of German missile development in WW2 it reminds you of how advanced some of their thinking was.

    I can imagine that, if the development of the ground-to-air missiles was just a little earlier in the war, the Allied bombing campaign against Germany would have turned out quite different.

    As for that sub launched missile, I know there were plans for V2's to be launched at sea. If I remember rightly, the V2 was to be launched from it's own shipping container, which was towed by a sub to the launch point. It was towed horizontal and when in place the container was flooded so that it stood upright, then it was fired by operators on the sub. I think the idea was that these V2's would be towed across the Atlantic to the US coast and then fired at places like New York etc.

    But I can imagine with all their other missile projects someone would have suggested mounting surface-to-air rockets on some of the bigger subs, like the Milch Cows or maybe the type XXI, for AA defence.

    _____________

    "We have invaded space with our rocket and for the first time - mark this well - have used space as a bridge between two points on the earth; we have proved rocket propulsion practicable for space travel. This third day of October, 1942, is the first of a new era of transportation, that of space travel." - General Walter Dornberger
     
  10. Sniper

    Sniper Member

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    Kai, found something on rocket launches from U-Boats. Very interesting reading and pics.

    go to this link.

    www.princeugen.com

    I knew somebody would have tried it. There's even a bit on the suggested V2 sub launches.

    _____________

    "We have invaded space with our rocket and for the first time - mark this well - have used space as a bridge between two points on the earth; we have proved rocket propulsion practicable for space travel. This third day of October, 1942, is the first of a new era of transportation, that of space travel." - General Walter Dornberger
     
  11. Sniper

    Sniper Member

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    Let's try that again.

    http://www.prinzeugen.com

    it's been a hard day :D

    ____________


    "Americans have different ways of saying things. They say "elevator", we say "lift" ... they say "President", we say "stupid psychopathic git."
    Alexai Sayle.
     
  12. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Thanx Sniper,

    That´s better than I expected, actually.

    The container for V2 over the ocean looks interesting but probably would not work...

    ;)

    [ 05. January 2003, 05:59 PM: Message edited by: Kai-Petri ]
     
  13. Sniper

    Sniper Member

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    I'll agree with you there Kai.

    In theory it might work if you were launching from somehwere that was always calm, but in any kind of seas, you could never launch it. Apart from the fact that it would probably swamp and sink when you opened the firing doors, you could never garantee where the rocket would end up as even the slightest swell would alter the trajectory quite a bit.

    And I can't imagine the U-Boat crew being too happy about dragging this large container through the water all the way across to America, then having to sit in one place while the container was floated upright and the rocket fired. I'd be tempted to radio back that the rocket had been "accidently" lost during heavy weather :D .

    Mind you, using the Werfgerat rockets was a brilliant idea with a lot of potential, and if they'd had the idea earlier, it probably wouldn't have taken them that long to figure out how to place the rockets inside the sub, so that the launchers could be reloaded.

    Imagine a wolf pack armed with rockets slipping into close range of an Allied harbour filled with ships, or even just close into shore near an oil refinery or even as a way of taking the war to the US people. Imagine what the impact would be if German rockets started landing in New York or another major city on the US coast. :eek:

    _______________

    "We have invaded space with our rocket and for the first time - mark this well - have used space as a bridge between two points on the earth; we have proved rocket propulsion practicable for space travel. This third day of October, 1942, is the first of a new era of transportation, that of space travel." - General Walter Dornberger
     
  14. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    V-2's on U-booten ? hmmmmm would have to be an extrememly large boat to accept one of these.

    The only thing I note is that in 1942 the idea of off shore bombardments was encouraged by using rockets which had the characteristic shpe of the Nebelwurfer system, with row of 8 wooden rackets and the angle was aobut 45 degrees. The racks being placd behind the coning tower at the rear of the boats.

    E
     
  15. mp38

    mp38 Member

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    Does anyone have any pics of the hnad held anti-aircraft rocket launcher that the Germans developed? I can't remember what it was called? It was suppose to be an infantry used weapon to shoot down enemy aircraft. (the Grandfather of our "stinger" missle). It looked simular to a Panzershreck, but had 6 or 7 rockets in it!
    If anyone has any pics, please post. Also does anyone know if this weapon was ever actually used?

    Matt :cool:
     
  16. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    Sorry don;t have a scanner. Several were captured by the Soviets and presented in a museum in Moscow and also in Dresden I beleive. It was also used against low flying Soviet a/c though many have doubted it's operational use. Doesn't llok like a panzerschreck to me ! Yes multi-barreled it was.....in the round. Think of a shoulder armed mini gun and that is what it appears to look like. The combination of using remodled R4-M missiles and there was talk of experiments of using these in a mobile role on small halftracks.

    E
     
  17. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    The hand held Luftwaffe item was called a Luftfaust and had 7 barrels. No face shield..... :eek: and used a shortened version of the R4M.

    E
     
  18. Sniper

    Sniper Member

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    Erich and mp38, check my post just before Kai's rocket pictures.

    The Luftfaust was also called the Fleigerfaust, and my sources say it had nine barrels.

    I've found a small picture in I. V. Hoggs "German Secret Weapons of WW2" published in 1970 but it's not too clear whether it has 7 or 9 barrels. I have seen another picture of the weapon taken from the same source as in his book, possibly a training manual, and I'll see if I can find it. That's the problem with having too many books, you know you've seen it somewhere but you just can't find it!! :mad:

    I've got a scanner but how do I get a picture on the Forums??

    ___________

    "Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer. Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza."
    Dave Barry
     
  19. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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  20. Anne-Marie

    Anne-Marie recruit

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    you seem to know a lot about herbert wagner.
    do you know much about his background?
     

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