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Wasserfall & Feuerlilie

Discussion in 'Wonder Weapons' started by USMA03, Jun 22, 2001.

  1. USMA03

    USMA03 Member

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    If these two weapons were ready, would they have made a difference in the out come of the war? It can be seen that even with heavy bombing in from 1943-1945 that the German industry continued to put out with Speer at the helm, but if these two anti-aircraft rockets (surface to air missles) were ready would they have effected the outcome? Could the combined strength of the British and American air forces have overcome these weapons in their infantcy? More information is available at http://visi.net/~djohnson/missile/

    Steve Flagg
     
  2. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    Hi Steve :

    This would of course depend on the year. This is very speculative, but if Germany had not been pounded by the air and did have the resources for chemical and fuel distribution then there would of been many, many aerial flak sites developed. Germany had the manpower just not the reserves. The US bomber crews were startled when the Br 21 rocket launcher was used in July of 43 under the wings of the Bf 109, later Fw 190 and then a total of 4 under the Bf 110G-2's and the Bf 410's. Allied fighter escort then in 1944 prevented much of the rocket attacks from even forming up. When again the R4M came into use under the wings of the Me 262 in 1945, the Allied crews were again startled and the US fighter escorts started hanging around the Me 262 airfields to take them on before they could out pace the P-51's and the same high altitude. Could the so-called rocket wonder weapons of turned the tide ..... ? Possibly if they would of been made in sufficient numbers and placed at strategic locations. Fortunately nearly all were in the experimental stages and were still being caried for trials when the fields/testing centers were captured. Can you imagine if the Germans had perfected the homing/guidance system what would of happened ? Total chaos !!

    E
     
  3. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    Thought I would give this a slight-- (bump) --

    guys:

    anyone know of some good books or web-sites that cover the anti-aircraft missiles during WW 2 ?

    E
     
  4. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    Not at all, Erich. My strong point is not Luftwaffe and less its technological issues like missiles and flying bombs... I cannot help you this time.

    But I think those miracle weapons would have made us very happy!!!
     
  5. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    I can tell you Friedrich that if these ground based wepaons would have been operationally functional by the beginning of 1944 things might have been possibly different over the skies of Germany and US bomber tactics would of had to have changed. You probably would not have seen such tight organized boxes.

    E still looking for a good book......
     
  6. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    I think we could have not win, but make Western allies to search for peace. In this way: Let's say we have V1s and V2s, Some 500 operational Me-262, Me-163B, He-162 (Is that the number of the "Salammander") by June 1943. Italy invasion, France invasion and the air raids over Germany could not have been possible. If just with a few Me-109 and Fw-190 we could shot down 1/3 of the bombers... I can't imagine with those Me-262, totally smashing bombers' formations. With such loses Churchill and Ike would have reconsidered.
     
  7. Hairog

    Hairog Member

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    I have a story in the Pen and Quill Forum that uses the Wasserfal and I've figured out a practical guidance system. Only it's the Soviets that have it in 1946.
     
  8. ickysdad

    ickysdad Member

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    Only thing I have to say is there
    s a big difference between making a few prototypes/conducting trials and getting something into serial production.
     
  9. T. A. Gardner

    T. A. Gardner Genuine Chief

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    Wasserfall was a fail. The missile had numerous issues that would have left it useless as a SAM.

    First, the Germans didn't know enough about supersonic flight to recognize that the control surfaces, designed in a conventional way that was used on aircraft, would be useless at supersonic speeds. The all-flying control surface hadn't yet been recognized and put into use. Without this type of control surface the Wasserfall wasn't going to be maneuverable in flight. This would have required a complete redesign of the missile's control and flight surfaces to fix.

    Next, the CLOS system using a joystick and ground controller was never going to be a viable solution to a missile that could fly as far as 16 miles from its launching position. At half that range and a target at say, 25,000 feet you are trying to guide a supersonic missile to an intercept with a speck in the sky. Since both the missile and target are moving, and there will be some parallax error involved, it is a virtual certainty that a visual control system using a simple joy stick like the Germans were using was completely worthless as a guidance system.
    The missile really needed a guidance radar, target tracking radar, and a fire control computer capable of taking data on the position of both and sending command signals or guiding the missile to an intercept. Germany lacked anything close to an acceptable system that could do that.

    The lack of a suitable proximity fuze was another problem. Command detonation might be substituted as a poor man's alternative.

    The choice of RNFA and furfuyl alcohol as propellant is also problematic. This left a thick reddish brown smoke trail behind the missile making it highly visible to the target and giving such targets a good chance to dodge or jam the missile.

    Postwar, the US found the Wasserfall virtually worthless, firing a few before dropping it as even a research missile as part of Project Hermes. The Russians tried to further develop it into a SAM but ran into so many problems that they recognized a complete redesign would be necessary and dropped it too.
     

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