Messerschmitt ME262 at Peenemünde?

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Sergio

Airman
20
26
Dec 12, 2013
Eastbourne
Your detailed knowledge is sought to answer a couple of questions...

Is there any aspect of the development of the ME262 that connects it to Peenemünde or (more likely) Peenemünde West?

Did an ME262 ever land at Peenemünde West airfield?
 
Hi and why would you want to know that?

I am writing a factual book which mentions the achievements of an East German two-stroke engine guru named Walter Kaaden (1919 to 1996). During WWII, he worked continuously on the Henschel Hs293 glide-bomb project at various locations...

9/1940 to 10/1943 - Henschel's HQ and factory at Berlin Schönefeld airfield.
10/1943 to 9/1943 - Peenemünde West airfield (Luftwaffe).
9/1943 to 7/1944 - Jesau airfield (Luftwaffe).
12/1944 to 4/1945 - Mittelbau underground factory (Harz Mountains).

His fans generally believe that Kaaden was based at Peenemünde throughout WWII and are generally unaware of his work at Berlin, Jesau and Mittelbau. As time passes, Kaaden's fans have given him credit for things he supposedly achieved that is unsupported by any evidence. In my opinion, these achievements are completely false and include the claims that...

"...he worked on the ME 262 jet-powered fighter plane..."
"...he worked on the V1's pulse jet and later, the Me262 jet fighter..."
"...his masterpiece was not the collaboration on the Messerschmitt Me 262, the world's first jet fighter, but the...two-stroke racing engine..."


These are all quotes taken from various websites. I am a stickler for the truth and I have always been dubious about the V1, V2 and ME262 claims. Of these, the V1 and V2 claims are easy to counter on the grounds that he was contracted to work on a Luftwaffe air-launched weapon project whereas the V1 and V2 (being ground-launched missiles) were Wehrmacht projects.

If the ME 262 was neither developed nor tested at Peenemünde West, that should stifle the claims made about Kaaden's involvement with the Messerschmitt.

This why I have raised the question on this forum.
 
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the starter engine used on the 262 was a riedel engine. 2 stroke engine.perhaps he had some thing to do about that
 
Kaaden had nothing to do with Norbert Riedel and his starters. I am certain of that.

So is there any connection between the ME 262 and Peenemünde?
 
Proving negatives by citing omission of the evidence is a bit of a dangerous mission - when not accompanied by
evidence of what a person/firm DID definetly do during a certain period.

Websites are full of worthless junk, and unless someone actually cites, dates, project numbers, photos, letters, reports
etc, I dont see much value in investigating this, I could spend weeks sifting through letters trying to find the name "Kaaden"
on something.

The best bet is to ask Dan Sharp (my editor) as he`s just finishing off an Me262 book now, I`ll ping him an email.

Peenemunde records (such as there are), are on microfilm, and whilst they are on my "List" of reels to get scanned, is not something
thats going to happen within the next 9months or so, due to the almost calamtous impact that the lockdowns had on archive
access here (UK), many museums obviously were just looking for the excuse to close/mothball/restrict their archives,
as many have barely made any attempt to go back to normal despite there having been no govt health restrictions in
place for many months. Anyway... thats another story !
 
Snowygrouch - Thanks for responding and I understand your dilemma. Actually, Kaaden per se, does not figure in the original question I asked which were solely about the links (if any) between Peenemünde-West and the ME262. Kaaden appeared only when I was asked the reason behind my questions.

But the fact that an expert such as yourself doesn't immediately say, "Mmm...I seem to recall reading something about this," is helpful in itself. I'm not expecting you or anybody else to spend time doing my research for me. Having spent a lot of time researching this matter myself, I took the plunge and decided to ask and give due credit to the experts. Thanks for passing my question to your editor.

For the record, the only connection I have found is not between Peenemünde-West and the ME262 but between Kaaden and the ME-262. This link is when Kaaden worked at the Mittelwerk underground factory in the Harz Mountains (after December 1944). Kaaden worked on Henschel's production of its Hs-293 rocket-assisted glide-bomb whilst another part of this vast underground factory complex was producing the ME-262 engine:

'From 1943, when the Allied bombing offensive threatened to bring Germany's above-ground industrial
production to a standstill, it became the centre of a whole complex of underground factories, the most
important of which was the Mittelwerk in the Kohnstein mountain, which produced three of Germany's
best-known secret weapons: the V1 flying bomb, the V2 rocket and jet engines for the Me 262 and
Ar 234 fighter.'
'Nordhausen' article in 'AFTER THE BATTLE' magazine No. 101 published in 1998 (page 2).

The same 42 page article later adds more detail:

The Junkers factory in the Nordwerk produced two types of jet engines, the Jumo 004 B-1 and
Jumo 004 B-4 for Me262 and Ar 234 jet fighters respectively. In all, some 1,463 were delivered before
war's end. In addition, in August, it received an order for 8,930 of the well-proven Jumo 213 engine.
Production did not start until late 1944 and by war's end, only some 800 had been completed.
'Nordhausen' article in 'AFTER THE BATTLE' magazine No. 101 published in 1998 (page 24).

And just to finish off this slight diversion for those interested in Jumo 004 B-4 engines...

Projects in the Mittelbau area were planned and overseen bv Special Inspection Staff II, led by
SS-Hauptsturmfiihrer Geissen, with headquarters at Halle. They included:
Project A-5: Eight miles west of Nordhausen, in the natural caves at Uftrungen
near Rottleberode (a protected site since 1922), the Junkers factory at Schönebeck in
April 1944 installed a production line for Jumo 004 B-4 engines. In all, 8,000 square
metres of cave floor were used. A railway line connected the site with the main line at
Rottleberode.
'Nordhausen' article, 'AFTER THE BATTLE' magazine No. 101 published in 1998 (page 30).

This article has more about Junkers jet engine production but I fear it may be off-piste for this topic. For those wanting a copy of this magazine, it can be bought here: www.afterthebattle.com/store/magazines/issue-no-101_ID104
 

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The only aircraft I have heard mentioned in regards to Peenemunde-west, were rocket powered or rocket assisted.
The Me262 is not one of those.

Erich Warsitz was one of the chief test pilots who flew most of the rocket powered projects at that site, his biography may help shed some light on what all was going in there.
 
.................................

These are all quotes taken from various websites. I am a stickler for the truth and I have always been dubious about the V1, V2 and ME262 claims. Of these, the V1 and V2 claims are easy to counter on the grounds that he was contracted to work on a Luftwaffe air-launched weapon project whereas the V1 and V2 (being ground-launched missiles) were Wehrmacht projects.

.................................
The V1 (Fi 103) was not a Wehrmacht project but a Luftwaffe project, and was tested at Peenemünde West.

The V2 (A4) was a Wehrmacht project until the SS took over.
 
The only aircraft I have heard mentioned in regards to Peenemunde-west, were rocket powered or rocket assisted.
The Me262 is not one of those.

Erich Warsitz was one of the chief test pilots who flew most of the rocket powered projects at that site, his biography may help shed some light on what all was going in there.

The only aircraft I have heard mentioned in regards to Peenemunde-west, were rocket powered or rocket assisted.
The Me262 is not one of those.

Erich Warsitz was one of the chief test pilots who flew most of the rocket powered projects at that site, his biography may help shed some light on what all was going in there.
Thanks for your help and I agree with your analysis though I hadn't sliced Peenemünde West's projects in such a clear-cut motive-power-generated way. This may have been due to physical aspects of the airfield facilities - runway surface and length for example. I'm no expert. There were a number of definitive groups testing different products at Peenemünde West and one such group certainly tested the Me 163B Komet. 'Erprobungs - Gruppen E4' (Test Group E4) was responsible for the remote control and signalling systems such as used on the Henschel Hs293 rocket-assisted glide bomb.

By the way, the designer of the Henschel Hs293 was the very first German scientist to arrive in the USA as part of Operation Paperclip at the end of WWII. His name was Dr Herbert Wagner. He arrived in the USA before Wernher von Braun. He stayed there for many years and indeed, the US built and tested their own 'copies' of his Hs293 design. This detail is what many people call useless information but that I call 'interesting'.
 
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Peenemünde West.Saw pictures of He 111's there as well.
Well-spotted. Curiously and in agreement with your contention, Peenemünde West tested the air-launched Hs293 glide bomb from beneath the wings of an He 111. For the record, in his excellent book Die Deutsche Luftruestung 1933-1945, author Heinz J Nowarra lists the following aircraft types as carriers of Hs293.
  • He 111 H-6
  • He 111 H-12
  • DO-217 E-5
  • Do 217 M-5
  • Fw 200 C-6
  • HE-177 / U A-5
It was an Hs293 launched by an He-177 on 26 November 1943 that caused one of the USA's worst ever sinking of a military ship. Over 1,100 lives were lost when HMT Rohna went down in the Mediterranean off North Africa.

ATTACHED PHOTOGRAPH - Added on 5 July 2022
This He111 is being armed at Peenemünde West with a development of the original radio-controlled glide-bomb. The Hs293B used hard-wiring to overcame its predecessor's vulnerability to jamming and loss of control. The small cylindrical containers on the Hs293B's wing-tips each contained 20km of fine wire that reeled itself out as the bomb fell away. The bomb-aimer's signals were transmitted to the Hs293B via these wires.
 

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One of the main reasons Neuhardenberg (E-hafen) and then Peenemunde-West were utilized for rocket related programs, was because of it's secrecy.
Neuhardenberg was originally a glider field with no structures on site. The site was developed and improved over the years before operations were moved to the Luftwaffe's test facility at Peenemunde in 1937.
The actual name for Peenemunde-west, was "Erprobungsstelle der Luftwaffe" or in short: "Werk West".
 
The V1 (Fi 103) was not a Wehrmacht project but a Luftwaffe project, and was tested at Peenemünde West.

The V2 (A4) was a Wehrmacht project until the SS took over.
I am wrong and you are right about the V1. This accounts for the proximity of the Fi 103 test ramp at the extreme north of the Peenemünde peninsular adjacent to Peenemünde West.

I have a natural interest in technical things but I don't consider myself as an expert when it comes to aircraft. I have now checked my bible on Peenemünde West, titled simply Peenemünde West by Botho Stüwe, an engineer who worked there during WWII. It's an 850 page German text book published in 1995 by Weltbild Verlag. Having no Index it's a hard read because I neither speak nor read German and lean heavily on Google Translate.

Thanks for spotting my error and putting me right.

I expect I am also wrong about the V2 so I will have to reconsider my hoped-for rebuttal.
 
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For what is worth, the section on Peenemünde-West in this book was written by Max Mayer, who worked at the Erprobungs Gruppe E2 at the time, but I can find no mention of Kaaden (who might have had a junior role there), and certainly no mention of any Me 262. Erprobungs Gruppe E2 was in charge of testing and evaluating the Me 163, amongst other things.
 

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