The Blohm & Voss BV 246 "Hagelkorn" (Hailstone) was originally
known under the designation of the BV 226. Designed by Dr. Richard Vogt,
the designation was changed to the BV 246 on December 12, 1943 when series
production was ordered. Basically, the idea behind the BV 246 was to attack
targets from the air at a distance, allowing the bomb to glide to the target,
while keeping the carrier aircraft out of anti-aircraft fire range.
had a clean, cigar-shaped fuselage and a twin fin and rudder arrangement
for the tail. The wings were shoulder mounted, and were very long and thin.
A very interesting design feature was that the wings were constructed of
die-cast concrete, the purpose of which would "spring" the "Hagelkorn"
away from the carrier aircraft when released (please see BV
P.204 diagram below for details of how the BV 246 was to be loaded).
The glide ratio on the BV 246 was approximately 1:25, thus if the BV 246
was dropped from an altitude of 7000 meters (23100 feet), the "Hagelkorn"
could glide as far as 175 kilometers (109 miles). The glide bomb was originally
meant to be guided by a radio link from the carrier aircraft, but interest
waned as the British began successfully countering German radio navigational
aids. The BV 246 "Hagelkorn" program was canceled on February 26,
1944, due to the overall down sizing of the entire German missile programs,
although testing continued at Karlshagen by KG101.
The BV 246 was
revived in early 1945 to use the "Radieschen" (Radish) ultra-short
wave passive homing device which would home into enemy radars. The new
BV 246 had a modified nose to house the "Radieschen", and it acted
on the gyroscopic control equipment for the rudders and elevator. Ten of
the modified BV 246 "Radieschen" equipped glide bombs were tested
on the Unterlüss test range, but due to the new equipment being under
development, eight of the tests failed, although two of the tests were
successful, landing within two meters (6 feet) of the target. Although
over 1000 BV 246 glide bombs were produced, none were used operationally.
Span: 6.4 m (21')
Length: 3.53 m (11' 7")
Speed at target: 450 km/h (280 mph)
Above: The BV 226, precusor
of the BV 246 (note the cruciform tail)
Below: Three BV 226 glide bombs on
a He 111H-6
BV 246 "Radieschen"
|The BV P.204
mixed-propulsion proposed ground attack aircraft project
was designed to carry the BV 246 glide bomb. Note the way the glide
bomb's wings are bent, this was to provide "spring" away from the
carrier aircraft when the BV 246 was released.
Above: Completed examples of the BV 246
Please note the modified BV 246 "Radieschen" glide bomb in the
noticable by the nose and fuselage extension just behind the wings.
|Below: Testing of the BV 246 with a Focke-Wulf
Left: A cutaway diagram showing the
location of the
Right: The Bv 246 "Hagelkorn"
glide bomb at the Cosford
components of the BV 246 with the
Royal Air Force Museum in Shropshire, England.
wave passive homing device
Photo by Graham Causer, May 1998....
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