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The Nazi V-2 Rocket

V2 engine after impact.

Big Dumb Rockets
Article on cheap rocketry, with a detailed discussion of the Nazi V2 rocket.
Rather than designing and testing a much bigger motor from scratch, the team decided to just take a number of these small motors and put them together into a bigger one. There were even studies to carry this principle on and form 6 identical V2 motors into a truely big aggregate (by today's standards) of 180 to thrust to form the A9/10
Over a thousand V2 rockets hit Britain during WWII, killing 2,724 people.

One of Hitler's so-called "Revenge Weapons."

Mittelwerk V-1 / V-2 Rocket Factory
A underground Nazi rocket factory that was sealed by the Russians at the end of WWII, and only recently reopened.
By 11 April 1945, when the U.S. Army 3rd Armored Division overran the complex, the Mittelwerk had produced over 13,000 V-1 and V-2 rockets, at the expense of the lives of some 20,000 of the forced laborers. The Americans, and later the British, removed as many completed rockets and parts as they could (this led to the birth of the United States space program), and the Soviets took over the site in July 1945. After taking what they wanted, the Russians attempted to blow up the interior tunnels. Finding this impossible, in 1948 they sealed all the exterior tunnel entrances by explosion.

Several combustion chambers for the V-2 rocket engine were also discovered. One was sent to Buchenwald for display.

Other pages:
Wikipedia: V-2 Rocket
Flying Bombs and Rockets
Nazi V-2/ A-4 Rocket Technology has a few animated gifs of a V-2 launch.


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