The Supersonic Nazi Rocket Bomber That Could Destroy Any City
It is May 1945, Nazi Germany has been defeated and the former Allies are now trying to get their hand on as much of the Nazi developed technology as they can. It is well known that Wernher von Braun and his V2 missile was the foundation of the American Space program but that was not the only rocket that the Nazis were developing.
Starting in 1942, after the United States have joined the war against the Nazi’s and Japan the Germans believed it was time to develop weapons that could strike back and hit the Americans back home.
The “America bomber” project was started which focused on a long range, piston engine bomber that could cross the Atlantic ocean and hit the East coast cities. This project ultimately delivered two working prototypes, the Messerschmitt Me 264 and Junkers Ju 390, which actually took to the air but never tried to cross the Atlantic.
A far more ambitious plan was launched by Eugen Sänger and Irene Bredt, they envisaged a piloted rocket bomber that could take off from a V-1 like ramp and then almost go into orbit before being able to bomb any city on earth. A very long glide would take it back to it’s landing site after which it could be used again.
According to Popular Science the key to his design’s success was its shape. Small wings, a pointed front, thin leading edges, and a flat bottom made for a vehicle that could skip off the lower layers of the atmosphere like a stone skipping across a still pond. The flight would only be partially powered; rocket propulsion would launch it on an arcing trajectory, and thanks to its flat bottom, it would skip and glide unpowered to its destination with a pilot at the helm.
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