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Prüfstand XII: submarine launched V-2 rockets

Michel Van

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That also called "Projekt Schwimmweste" (Project life jacket)

after some German literature it was also part of "Amerika Bomber Projekt"
were a German Sub pulls one V-2 cannisters to U.S. Coastline
the chance to launch the rocket was Zero, because the U.S. Navy gona bomb if the Sub show up.
 

Jemiba

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It was very worthwhile project ! It kept several designers/engineers/draughtsman busy and
away from the front and so ... alive . And in some way it used up resources (at least in the
field of design and construction), that, if better used, could have prolonged the war.
So, yes, it was a good project.
BTW, I'm not sure, but I think I've seen a similar concept from post-war times ?
 

edwest

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This is the Laffarenz Project which had a V-2 in a container to be towed by a U-Boat. Although the containers were built, it is unclear if an attempt was made. Pruefstand XII is a reference to Test Stand 12 at Peenemunde which has been mentioned in the literature but photographs have not surfaced.



Ed
 
K

Kiwiguy

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Michel Van said:
That also called "Projekt Schwimmweste" (Project life jacket)

after some German literature it was also part of "Amerika Bomber Projekt"
were a German Sub pulls one V-2 cannisters to U.S. Coastline
the chance to launch the rocket was Zero, because the U.S. Navy gona bomb if the Sub show up.
Correct Michel the proper name was Projekt Schwimmweste (project swim vest) and also known as Apparat F. From December 1944 Dr Dickmann led a team of engineers to create Lafferenz capsules. It's more commonly known as Pruffstand XII.

Chance to launch was not necessarily zero. A typical A-4 had a range of about 190 km, but the Lafferenz was intended to use the A-8 missile with about 600 km range. The greater stand off range could have assisted it's survival.

The classic V-2 required hydrogen peroxide to spin it's turbo pumps. The A-8 used a mixutre of diesel/kerosene and Nitric acid pressed from tanks by high pressure nitrogen. The benefit was more thrust for more sustained burn.

There were four Lafferenz capsules actually built. The 300t prototype was built at Schichau dockyards in Elbing for Test department #10. It displaced 300 tons and was 30 metres long. This prototype was used in Baltic towing trials behind U-1063 as part of Operation Schwimveste. Part of the alarm after the war was raised because this capsule has never been found or accounted for. Suspicion in the closing days of the war was that U-873 may have been attempting a real launch with it. It is however unlikely this cannister could accomodate the A-8 missile and in any case the A-8 to my knowledge was not flown.

In Soviet captivity ex-Peenemünde engineer Helmut Gröttrup proposed the G-1 which was effectively an improved A-8 with a pump powered by exhaust gases.

The remaining three lafferenz capsules were built by Vulkanwerke Stettin. These 500 tonne capsules were captured by the Soviets. One was completed by the germands and the remaining two were finished for evaluation by the Soviets.
 
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