Did the DEPLOYMENT of the turbojet engine change the course of WW2 (1939-45) ?

Discussion in 'Engines' started by michaelmaltby, Dec 25, 2011.

  1. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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  2. tyrodtom

    tyrodtom Well-Known Member

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    #2 tyrodtom, Dec 25, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2011
    They were deployed for about a year, and if you accept every claim as valid , they shot down 550 allied ac.

    550 aircraft destroyed in a year just isn't remotely enough, it they had managed 550 in a week, that might have changed the course of WW2.

    IMHO the deployment of the jet just deserves a footnote in WW2.

    I'm of course just considering the ME-262, the only jet that shot down any aircraft, The Meteror just shot down buzz bombs I think.
     
  3. buffnut453

    buffnut453 Well-Known Member

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    I think the short answer is no. That said, we're looking at the problem from the wrong end of the telescope. We now know that WWII ended in 1945. When jet engines were developed in Germany and Great Britain, nobody knew when the war would end and so the technology was seen at the time as being the "next great thing" by both sides (which, indeed, it was). Had the war flowed over into 1946 or 1947, I think jet powered aircraft would have become far more commonplace. However, such Luft-46 thinking has no impact on what actually happened. The jet engine made a massive technological contribution leading into the post-war period but I don't think it made an appreciable military contribution to WWII.
     
  4. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    I agree. Like the Type XXI submarine, jet aircraft were perfected a year too late to matter.
     
  5. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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    buffnut bender [it sounds like a law partnership ... :)]

    I agree. :)

    When musing over this thread I wanted to factor in where the engine-airframe was heading, in 1944. If there HAD been no jet engines ... ever-more-complicated radial and inlines were waiting to go on stage ..... including contra-rotating props. The turbojet had teething issues ... we all understand that ... but the shift to turbojets completely changed the aviation industry balance sheet ... operating costs $$$$$.

    If WW2 had proceeded apace, German jets - cheap to build, would certainly have been a factor, IMHO. :)

    MM
     
  6. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    Michael - I have serious doubts that the german jet entry would have mattered any more had the war lasted say another two months or two years if your baseline of the war was say, January 1945. The actual territory held by Germany was being compressed on the ground to the point that there was no place to hide, rail/road and water logistics were essentially non-effective during daylight hours and the piston engine air superiority became even more effective as the German held territoty became more and more compressed.

    Net - during daytime, neither material nor fuel moved effectively from factory to assembly to airfield. German jets had zero tranquility to operate from anywhere free of maruading fighters... extending the war wasn't feasible with or without jet fighters and it made no difference to the Allied advance on the ground. The consequence of having a force of say 200+ Me 262s in April 1944 would have had deadly consequences on daylight bombing and possibly force a change in tactics from day to night bombing for 8th AF/15th AF and certainly cause higher casualties to the Allies - but they had no material effect on 8th/15th AF strategic bombing practices when they were fully deployed in late 1944-early 1945 and it would be hard to draw conclusions that they could have halted even the daylight campaign on Oil/Chemical plants in Spring/Summer 1944.
     
  7. buffnut453

    buffnut453 Well-Known Member

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    Drgondog,

    Your comments also highlight a key difference between the German and British jet designs. For reasons various, the German engines were not very reliable and could only be flown for a relatively few hours before major overhaul was required (IIRC it was 25 hours but I could be mistaken). Whittle's jet design was considerably more robust, having run successfully for over 100 hours. So even if the war had gone on longer, I don't think German jets would have made a substantive contribution but we might have seen more Allied jets in the skies over Europe. That said, the war was already effectively won by the end of 1944 so would Allied jets have made a major contribution? Probably not because existing means of projecting airpower were doing the job sufficiently well.
     
  8. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    We've covered this ground before.

    September 1944. RLM Jumo-004B1 power plant handbook.
    25 hour service life before major engine inspection was required.
    .....This matches the service life of BMW801 engines during 1941.
    There were numerous Jumo-004 incremental improvements between September 1944 and April 1945. Most of the improvements increased engine service life.

    18 Mar 1945.
    37 x Me-262 fighters attack 1,221 allied bombers escorted by 632 fighters. 12 bombers and 1 escort fighter were shot down for the loss of 3 x Me-262s. This was the first large scale combat operation for the Me-262.

    The Jumo-004B engine was adequately reliable six months before Germany operated Me-262s in Gruppe strength.
     
  9. riacrato

    riacrato Member

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    It obviously didn't. However, I am not sure a propulsion system for aircraft can by itself change the course of a war. If Germany had deployed the Me 262 as early as say late 1943, the war may have lasted longer, but Germany STILL would've lost. The 2nd world war was not won or lost in the air. It was won / lost in meatgrinder battles on the ground on both fronts but predominantly in the east.
     
  10. Siegfried

    Siegfried Banned

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    German security in Iron ore supplies from Swedden came out of securing Norway; ie occupying it to protect German shipping and sending a message to Swedden to stay neutral and the soviet Union to stay out and keep the Royal Navy well away from the area. British minning and naval attacks in neutral waters were ineveitable given Britains WW1 behaviour and its hard to see the Norweigen navy attacking the RN several hundred miles off their shores; one would see a token effort within the 12 miles of Norways neutrality zone. German Bauxite supplies came out of occupied France. not likely to be a reliable supplier however Germany's succesfull victory over France solved this issue. I believe that Germany was more or less self sufficient in magnesium and lead. Medieval and prehisotric germans had no problems extracting iron (from limonite found in bogs) to make remarkable pattern welded swords that put samuri swords to shame, they cauld also extract lead, copper, tin though there is no way it would produce the full needs of the German economy.

    It's clear that the Italians could design good aircraft however they lagged somewhat in engine development to produce truely top of the line combat aircraft and had little experience in large scale mass production. Given Italies lack of not only Iron Ore but coal is well its easy to see why they continued to use wooden construction.

    Faced with this huge disparity I'd say they didn't bother developing alternatives to alluminium and besides they had an alternative from the soviet union.

    nevertheless a proper program of raw materials subsitutuion would have helped the German balance of payments and economy; Woodworking was a german skill and they had rather good plywood called tego film: a large number of medium range of German transports made of wood would have been very usefull and mobilised a great deal of German industry. There ju 252 seems to have been this aircraft, however they started too late. They would have needed to have had the design complete by 1938 to have it in mass production in time to be usefull.
     
  11. Siegfried

    Siegfried Banned

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    Get the jumo's reliable by the end of 1943 and secure German cyphers from the begining of the war then the Germans are in with a chance. Heisenberg also needs to be unequivical about the possibillity of an atomic bomb. If Speer had of asked Paul Hartek or Kurt Diebner and listened less to Heisenberg (who was morally equivial) and Schumann (who was semi-interested) the Germans would have been close to a bomb by 1945.

    Exactly why the Germans lost against the soviet union is harder for me to discern; failing to exploit captured oil fields is one, possibly diverting to save mussolinis botched invasion of Greece thereby delaying Barbarossa is another, the poor devision to airlift at Stalingrad is another.
     
  12. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    #12 drgondog, Dec 26, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2011
    Reply deleted - I missed 1945 versus 1944
     
  13. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    That would require mass production of the Jumo-004A rather then waiting another year for the Jumo-004B.

    The Jumo-004A engine was reliable, passing several 100 hour endurance tests during 1943. Historically a total of 80 engines were produced during 1942 to 1943. Why they didn't produce a few hundred more is a good question. It may have been heavier then the Jumo-004B but I'd hazzard a guess the Me-262 could still easily exceed 500mph when powered by those engines.
     
  14. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    depends on how you look at it. air power all by itself...no. we covered that in a heated thread. but was it the determining factor that because of its dominance or lack there tipped of the tides of battles and probably the over all war...i would have to say yes. had germany been able to mass several hundred fighters and bombers over normandy on june 6th...the success of D-day would have been in question. allied operations were geared to keep that from happening. if hitler had 500 b17s like bombers and along with 500 escorts to swarm the skies of kursk would the ussr have won the day? so in the light that it was the key factor that enabled everything else... yeah. i would say it won the war.
     
  15. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    What difference would that make? B-17s were practically useless against tactical targets.

    If Germany had 500 Me-210C dive bombers plus 500 Me-109G fighter escorts at Kursk plus an adequate supply of aviation gasoline that might make a difference. They could knock out some of the Soviet Artillery.
     
  16. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    Dave - I suspect that the ability of the Soviets to form regiments and divisons en masse, then attack in overwhelming force in open country devoid of cover, would have been severly hampered by the availability of 500 B-17s and escorts at Kursk. Panzer Lehr was pounded under less than ideal weather and trrop disposition constraints in Operation Cobra as the only example of strategic bomb force attacks in a tactical operation.
     
  17. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    You don't win battles by cratering the landscape. You need to put ordnance on target. That lesson should have been learned during WWI.

    Dive bombers such as the Ju-87, Ju-88 and Me-210C had the accuracy to hit tactical targets. Level bombers such as the He-111 and B-17 did not.
     
  18. tyrodtom

    tyrodtom Well-Known Member

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    I certainly works well if you crater the right part of the lanscape, that's why artillery uses forward observers, when possible.

    Nobody ever thought out a practical way to do that with heavy bombers though.
     
  19. riacrato

    riacrato Member

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    Germany had bomber types more suitable to that than B-17s and it didn't really help.
     
  20. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    6th Air Fleet supported Army Group Center.
    They had 3 dive bomber gruppe.

    4th Air Fleet supported the southern atttack at Kursk.
    They had 7 dive bomber gruppe.

    According to Glantz German aviation fuel reserves for Kursk were two thirds of requirements. Consequently sortie rates dropped off sharply after a couple days.

    If the dive bomber gruppe were full strength (which I doubt) that amounts to about 360 CAS aircraft. Not a lot of support for an army operation of this size.

    Me-210C and Me-410A dive bombers which should have been at Kursk were instead used to intercept American heavy bombers. Ju-88 dive bombers which should have been at Kursk were increasingly being diverted to counter RAF Bomber Command. IMO the U.S. and British bombing campaigns crippled Luftwaffe support on the Russian front from 1943 onward.

    Not that this has anything to do with the Me-262 jet fighter. :)
     
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