Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Glide Bomb.

This is coolbert:

During both World War One [WW1] and World War Two [WW2], the U.S. Navy did have a very distinguished record of successfully conveying, almost without loss, troops into combat areas via troops ships.

When you think of the MILLIONS of troops transported across the Atlantic alone during WW1 and WW2, ALMOST none being lost to hostile action, this was a stellar achievement on the part of the U.S. Navy.

Add all those for the Pacific theatre in WW2 also, and the record is even more spectacular.

However - - 26 November 1943: [thanks here to the Chicago Tribune.]

“In 1943 the HMT Rohna, a British troop-transport ship, was hit by a German missile off Algeria; 1,138 were killed, including 1,015 Americans.”

"this still constitutes the largest loss of US troops at sea"

"The blow was so devastating that it was classified until 1967"

In this specific incident, a BRITISH troop transport was sunk after attack from a Luftwaffe advanced weapon. Very large number of American dead!

Sunk by a German anti-ship glide bomb. A HS293.

Dropped from a German bomber, guided to target by a “gunner” aboard the bomber. Guidance “all the way” by one of three methods:

* Radio control.

* Wire guided.

* Television. [developed but not actually deployed in combat.]

German glide-bombs that came in ever more sophisticated and deadly variants.

Variants to include:

* Rocket-powered glide bombs.

* An “aerial torpedo” using the supercavitation principle [HS294].

"the . . . Henschel Hs 294 . . . guided to a point in front of the water line of a ship. At water entry, the warhead would separate from fuselage and wings. Using its remaining kinetic energy, the (unguided) warhead-projectile would then follow an underwater path towards the ship target. The projectile body had a slender conical shape with an ogive nose. The underwater path could be curved slightly upward by means of a small ridge on the upper side of the ogive. The projectile had to be curved upward in order to achieve a nearly horizontal path at the point of impact."

The HS294 became a TORPEDO upon striking the water. Object was to “hole” and defeat the underwater integrity of the target ship. More effective than “merely” striking the ship’s superstructure above the waterline. Supercavitation was possible due to the kinetic energy, forward motion, speed, and DESIGN of the HS294 “aerial torpedo”.

Formidable stuff!! [the HS294 was NOT actually deployed and used in combat?]

The German glide-bombs are just illustrative of how German military technology and engineering prior and during WW2 was SOMETIMES far ahead of whatever the allied nations were able to muster.

Technology and engineering to include: [but not limited to.]

* Rocket powered missiles and aircraft.

* Infrared technology.

* Jet powered aircraft. [as differentiated from the rocket-powered craft such as the Me-163.]

* Research into cold fusion? [German military scientists and engineers while researching high power sonar made the first observations regarding the entire principle of cold fusion.]


* Supercavitation.

German military advances and developments in atomic research and cryptology during WW2 WERE lacking. Severely so! But NOT in other areas.




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