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December 18, 2013

Yes, but that Fokker was a Messerschmitt!


From dozens of others at Sploid's The definitive collection of secret Nazi weapons
"The Messerschmitt Me 163 Komet, designed by Alexander Lippisch, was a German rocket-powered fighter aircraft. It is the only rocket-powered fighter aircraft ever to have been operational. Its design was revolutionary, and the Me 163 was capable of performance unrivaled at the time. German test pilot Heini Dittmar in early July 1944 reached 1,130 km/h (700 mph), not broken in terms of absolute speed until November 1947.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at December 18, 2013 4:19 PM. This is an entry on the sideblog of American Digest: Check it out.

Your Say

"Yes, but that Fokker was a Messerschmitt!"

In the not too distant future, you and I and a few others will pass and there will be no one left who will remember, let alone explain, this silly joke.

Posted by: blackfox at December 18, 2013 5:41 PM

Yeah but it had to land on a sled, if I remember right. Not many people walked away from testing it.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at December 18, 2013 6:52 PM

Yes, it dropped its wheels upon takeoff, and landed on skids. While the Komet was a widow-making in testing, it had fantastic performance, but it had little range or endurance, and would usually get in only one or two passes at the bombers before it depleted its fuel. Allied fighter pilots soon learned that all they had to do to shoot them down was circle near Me-163 landing fields and wait for them to glide in for their out-of-fuel landings (similar to what they did for Me-262 jets). Like many Nazi weapons, the Komet was ahead of its time conceptually, but was too little, too late, and, fortunately for the Allies, not ready for prime time during the war.

Posted by: waltj at December 18, 2013 8:31 PM


Posted by: waltj at December 18, 2013 8:32 PM

In my youth, I knew a B-17 pilot who was the in the first squadron to be engaged by the komet. He told me that "This thing went ZOOM up through our formation and then ZOOM back down through us". That's all we saw of it. He wasn't even sure if it ever fired its' guns or not.

Posted by: Eric Blair at December 19, 2013 6:50 PM

All of those photographs are proof that the Allied bombing of Germany was worth every life given to stop Nazi Germany! God Bless them!

Posted by: bartdp at December 20, 2013 7:23 AM

Eric, that was one of the things the Germans discovered about the Komet (and to a somewhat lesser extent, the Me-262): their high speed gave them very little time to engage the bomber formations. The Luftwaffe had installed 30-mm cannon to make every hit count, but here again there was a tradeoff. The larger gun had a slower rate of fire than the 20-mm cannon that was the main armament of the Me-109/FW-190, so the volume of fire was lower. TNSTAAFL.

Posted by: waltj at December 20, 2013 7:27 AM

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