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Fieseler Fi 103R Reichenberg

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Late in the war several piloted V-1s were built. The plan was that a pilot would guide the missile into position close to its target and bail out at the last moment. It was essentially a suicide mission, but unlike some Japanese Kamikaze pilots, German pilots would not have been sealed inside their aircraft.

This manned V-1 was tested several times, killing every pilot on landing. A famed female test-pilot, Hanna Reitsch, discovered in simulated landing attempts that the craft had an extremely high stall speed and that the previous pilots had attempted their approaches too slowly. Once her recommendation was followed, pilot fatalities were reduced, but not ended. All of the Reichenbergs were air-launched from planes. The war ended before Germany could use the Reichenberg in combat.

History of the Artifact
The Soviet Army occupied the Nordhausen area and in 1948 they demolished the entrances to the underground missile factories. Almost half a century later, a new entrance was found into the caves and these missiles were discovered there by restorers and enthusiasts. These missiles were acquired by the Flying Heritage & Combat Armor Museum in 2001.

General Statistics
Crew: 1
Length: 26 ft 3 in
Wingspan: 18 ft 9 in
Height: 4 ft 6 in
Weight: 4,960 lbs
Engine: 1 x Argus Schmidt AS 109-014 pulse jet
Performance
Maximum speed: 497 mph at 8,000 ft
Range: 205 miles
Armament
1 x 1,874 lb high-explosive warhead