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Flying Rams and Air to Air Ramming

Discussion in 'Weapons & Technology in WWII' started by JCFalkenbergIII, Feb 23, 2008.

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  1. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    Flying Rams
    Written by Greg Bjerg on May 22nd, 2006 at 11:19 pm
    From DamnInteresting.com
    [​IMG]Northrop XP-79During World War 2, large bombers and flying fortresses were considered critical for victory by both the Allied and Axis forces. In order to meet the threat of enemy bombers, both the Germans and the Americans were developing new interceptors intended to attack large enemy planes by deliberately colliding with them. Employing a technology which was ultimately abandoned, the solidly-built interceptors were meant to collide with their target at extremely high speeds. If all went according to plan, the bomber would be fatally wounded and the ramming plane and its pilot would survive the impact, ready to move on to the next victim.
    The American plane designed for this role was the Northrop XP-79B. Started as a program to develop a rocket-powered gun-equipped fighter, the XP-79B emerged as a magnesium-reinforced jet designed to ram enemy aircraft. The jet's design was unique, placing the pilot in a prone position to allow him to endure much greater g-forces. The pilot controlled the ailerons with a tiller bar in front of him and rudders mounted at his feet, which is the reverse of normal flight controls. Intakes at the wingtips supplied air for the unusual bellows-boosted ailerons.
    Naturally the plane was nicknamed the "Flying Ram." The plan was simple: fly above enemy aircraft, then enter a high-speed dive and collide with an enemy's wing or vertical stabilizer. The XP-79B was designed to survive because of the heavily reinforced leading edges on the wings.
    [​IMG]The XP-79B had a range of 993 miles, a ceiling of 40,000 feet and a top speed of just under five hundred and fifty miles per hour. A developmental version of the plane, the MX-324, became America’s first rocket-powered aircraft.
    Fortunately for potential pilots, the balance of power in the war turned against the Axis before the plane ever flew. The only XP-79B to take to the air did so after the war's end, and ended tragically. Test pilot Harry Crosby had flown the plane well for several minutes before it entered an uncontrollable spin from 8,000 feet, and Crosby was unable to bail out. The XP-79B project died with him.
    Although Axis pilots– especially the Japanese– actually did try to collide with Allied bombers using volunteers using conventional aircraft, they also had efforts to develop ramming planes. The Zeppelin Company in Germany– named after Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin– was working on such a rocket plane when the war ended. It was called the Zeppelin Rammer.
    The Rammer was proposed in the last six months of the war, but its progress never went beyond the design stage. Unlike the XP-79B, the Rammer was to be towed aloft by another fighter (probably a ME-109 or ME-110) and then released at the desired altitude. After being released it would ignite a solid-fuel rocket and accelerate to six hundred miles per hour. The small plane had fourteen small rockets housed in the nose, which could be fired at an enemy aircraft. The fighter could then take a second pass to ram the target if needed. [​IMG]Zeppelin RammerThe designers were convinced that the Rammer would be able to slice through a bomber’s tail section with little or no damage due to the heavily reinforced leading edges on the wings. After an attack, the Rammer would glide to the ground its retractable skid.
    The Japanese never got to the stage of designing a plane specifically for ramming. Still, some Allied B-29's were lost in ramming attacks by Japanese pilots using outdated aircraft. The Shinten Seiku-tai (The Heaven Shaking Air Superior Unit) were specially trained sections of fighter units with the mission of air-to-air ramming of Allied bomber aircraft. It was all an act of desperation which had no significant military value aside from downing a few bombers, much like the kamikazes' efforts to damage US carriers.
    The idea of using an aircraft as a manned guided missile has a modern footnote as well. On September 11, 2001, F-16 pilots flying combat air patrol over Washington DC decided that they would ram hijacked airliners if necessary. The pilots had taken off in such a hurry to protect Washington that they left with no air-to-air missiles and the wrong ammunition. Some planes left with non-explosive practice rounds.
    Although the Northrop XP-79B program was cancelled early, its legacy lives on in the 21st century. The Northrop Corporation ultimately used its basic design when building the revolutionary "Flying Wings" of the 1950s. Northrop gained considerable knowledge about wing-only aircraft with planes like the XP-79B, and that expertise eventually lead to the B-2 Stealth Bomber.
     
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  2. Hufflepuff

    Hufflepuff Semi-Frightening Mountain Goat

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    The Germans used ramming techniques in the last month of the war with Bf-109s in a special unit called the Zonderkommando Elbe. They were supposed to get into ramming position on a B-17 or B-24 and bail out seconds before impact. This idea failed miserably; very few (less than 20%) of the Bf-109s even rammed the bombers successfully, let alone destroy them. This was mainly because the pilots were teenagers and had practically no experience and little training.
     
  3. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    The Soviets rammed also,

    "Soviet pilots often used the taran attack, ramming a German aircraft, if all else failed. The taran was not a suicide maneuver except in the most extreme of circumstances. There were three types of taran attacks; the first was to use the prop of the Soviet aircraft to damage the tail of the opposing aircraft, with the idea that damage to the rudder or elevators would cause the enemy aircraft to lose control. The second was to ram a wing into the control surfaces of the enemy aircraft or to tip your wing into the enemy's wing so that he lost control. Both of these gave the attacking pilot at least a chance of surviving. The third was to deliberately fly into the enemy aircraft, which was, in essence, a suicide maneuver. Some Polikarpov I-16s were fitted with armored props to help them withstand the dangers of making a taran attack. There were 561 taran attacks carried out by the VVS during the Great Patriotic War. 6 Soviet pilots died in 11 taran attacks against the Finnish Air Force.Two of the attacks deserve special mention - one was in 1945 against the Japanese and one was by a woman, Yekaterina Zelenko, who on September 12, 1941, rammed a Bf 109 with her Sukhoi Su-2."
     
  4. Sloniksp

    Sloniksp Ставка

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    Anymore info on Soviets ramming?
     
  5. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    Just this so far there was a Soviet ace that survived 4 rammings. Boris Kovzan - he flew Yaks with 744 IAP, and ended the war with 28 victories, including his four by ramming.
     
  6. Sloniksp

    Sloniksp Ставка

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    Ah yes, I have heard of Boris...
     
  7. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    Ill have to see if I can find more :). And this is more on the Zeppelin Rammer,

    "This project was first proposed in November 1944. The "Rammer" was to be towed aloft by another fighter (most likely a Bf 109). Once released, the pilot was to ignite the solid-fuel Schmidding rocket, accelerating to 970 km/h (602 mph) and then launching its 14 R4M rockets at the target. A second pass was then made, this time making a ramming attack with its reinforced wings. It was calculated that at the attack speed the aircraft could cut cleanly through the tail section of a B-17 without great loss of speed or stability. After attacking, a gliding landing was to be made on a retractable skid."

    Zeppelin "Rammer" Luft '46 entry
     

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  8. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    Leytenant Anatoliy Vasilevich Sitnikov 1920 - 25 May 1943
    Sitnikov was born in Grozny in 1920.
    In May 1943, Serzhant Sitnikov served in the 71 IAP-KBF. During this time, the unit was equipped with Polikarpov I-153s.
    In the afternoon on 21 May 1943, a Finnish Messerschmitt section took off from Utti. The formation was led by luutnantti Evinen and the wingmen were kersantti Leino and kersantti Mauno Kirjonen (Kirjonen had previously been shot down by a I-153 flown by Vladimir Shavrov on 22 July 1941).
    The Finnish aircraft met a formation of Russian I-153s over Lavansaaari and Kirjonen reported:
    "We engaged 7-8 enemy I-153 fighters at the height of 1000m NW of Lavansaari. I attacked head -on against two of the Russians. When I looked down I saw a MT attack them from below. I made a turn and after this I saw three machines go down. The MT had lost 2/3 of its right wing and one of the I-153s had lost both wings on the other side. The planes crashed near each other 5-8 km west from the northern tip of Lavansaari. The other I-153 crashed south of these two. I saw one pilot to land with his parachute and Evinen told me that it was a Russian one because the parachute was a square one."
    What he had seen was Serzhant Sitnikov making a “taran”-attack on the Finnish Messerschmitt Bf109G MT-228 (W.Nr 13890) over Lavansaari and safely parachuted after the ramming.
    The Finnish pilot luutnantti Tauno Saalasti of 2/LeLv 34 was killed when his aircraft crashed at 15:28. Saalasti was 27 years old and was from Sippola.

    Four days later, on 25 May, Sitnikov performed a second “taran” attacked when he rammed and destroyed another Bf109 over Lavansaari Island but this time he wasn’t lucky and was killed when his fighter crashed.
    Sitnikov was posthumously awarded the Order of the Red Banner. Sitnikov ended the war with 2 biplane victories.

    Soviet biplane fighter aces - Anatoliy Sitnikov
     
  9. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    Siergiey Luganski - Master of 'Taran' Attack.

    Written by Dariusz Tyminski .

    Siergiey Luganski (1918-1977) was one of the best Soviet pilots. He achieved a total of 37 kills during the Great Patriotic War (1941-1945) - two of these kills were by "Taran" attacks (air-to-air ramming). He was highly awarded, twice appointed Hero of the Soviet Union.

    Born in Alma Ata, Kazakhstan, he was facinated by aviation since early ages. In 1936 he joined the Military Aviation school in Orienbursk. In 1938, Luganski completed the Pilot’s School with the award of Best Student. Next, he went to a fighter regiment, first as an ordinary pilot, next - as leader of a section, and finally as deputy regimental commander. In 1939, he completed the Military Aviation Academy.

    During the Soviet-Finnish War (1939-40) he flew 59 combat missions, downing one enemy aircraft. Luganski's Squadron (25 IAP), commanded by Ivan Ivanovich Popov, part of the 14th Soviet Fighter Corps, operated from the frozen lake Karchu-Lampi. The main task for this unit was ground-attack sorties against Finnish troops. During one of these sorties, on 28 February 1940, Luganski’s plane was hit by artillery shell (probably Soviet!), and he was forced to bail out, despite the fact that he was flying at a very low altitude. His parachute developed only a few metres above the ground. During the jump he lost his flying boots - which was some quite serious business at 40 Centigrades below zero. But the front line was close. Luganski, running only in his socks, was lucky to reach the Soviet positions. Next day he was airborne again, scoring his first aerial victory against a less fortunate Finnish aircrew. Flying together with his commander, Sen.Lt. Vladimir Nikolayevich Pieshkov (who was appointed Hero of the Soviet Union on 20 September 1940, after 3 kills in Winter War), he managed to down a Finnish reconnaissance biplane.

    Luganski’s next kill almost finished his career: By mistake he destroyed a Soviet R-5 reconn-bomber. But Luganski was lucky again, escaping with only a few days in confinement. Following the Finnish surrender in the Winter War, all pilots were awarded, and Luganski received the Red Star Order. The combat missions he had flown during the war with Finland provided him with experience which would prove very useful in the coming years.

    In beginning of the Great Patriotic War, Luganski flew a LaGG-3 fighter, and downed a few enemies. The squadron, commanded by Ivan Gluhih, was re-equipped with old I-16s. In air combat over Bataysk on 9 September 1941, two sections (6 planes) of Soviet fighters encountered 18 Germans. A German (whom Luganski assumed must have been an ace) shot down Vladimir Pieshkov. Luganski followed German in a long persuit, to revenge himself for his friend's death, but instead he got himself shot down. But once again, luck had not completely deserted him, as he managed to bail out and survive.

    While covering Soviet Army’s river crossings, he downed enemy aircraft through ramming attacks twice. The first occasion was on September 14th, 1942. Having run out of ammunition, Luganski decided to perform a "Taran" attack against an enemy formation, which was approaching River Volga in the air above General Rodimtsev's division. He knocked down a Romanian He 112 with a damaged wing. Next time, the "Taran" attack was accomplished while flying cover over the Dnepr River - this time the victim was an He 111. And luck stayed with Luganski, who in both cases came out of the ramming attacks alive (unlike most Soviet pilots, who performed this type of attack). On the same day as he scored his second ”Taran” kill, he was awarded with the Alexander Nevski Medal.

    In June 1943, Luganski’s squadron (12 aircraft) was engaged in a famous battle. Over the front lines, they spotted about 80 German bombers, from which they bagged 12. Several pilots scored multiple victories in this melee). One month later, Luganski's squadron came across 30 Bf 109's. During a prolonged and stiff battle, the Soviets managed to shoot down 8 enemies. On 12 September 1943, acting as squadron commander in the 270th Guards Regiment, Sergeiy Luganski was appointed Hero of the Soviet Union. At this moment he had 18 kills to his credit.

    In another aerial combat, Luganski was seriously injured. Still not completely recovered, he returned to Alma Ata in the end of December 1943. The people of the city welcomed him with great enthusiasm, and raised funds which bought him a new Yak-1M. In May 1944, Luganski was put in charge of a Guards Fighter aviation Regiment in the 1st Guards Ground-attack Aviation Corps (1 GvShAK, commanded by V. G. Ryazanov), supporting the 1st Ukrainian Front. At this moment he had 18 kills to his credit. Shortly after taking command of this crack unit, Luganski downed a German fighter ace. In his memoirs 'Glubokiye Wirazhi' (Deep Turns), Luganski describes this event with the following words:
    In one of the days of May 1944 , Sergiey Luganski and his wingman took off on an important reconnaissance mission. While Viktor Usov accomplished his task of covering his commander, Luganski discovered some German tanks and armoured columns. They flew at low altitude in order to avoid enemy fighters. Having fulfilled their mission, the two Soviets entered their return flight. What they didn't notice was that a 'hidden' pair of Bf 109s followed them. Later, Luganski assumed they must have noticed the rich ace 'ornaments' on his Yakovlev, which made them decide to avoid an open confrontation, and instead seeking the chance in a surprise attack. They waited patiently, and when Luganski, having reduced the speed of his aircraft, started landing - they decided to hit.

    The Ground control noticed the danger and warned both pilots by R/T. Viktor Usov turned sharply to defend his leader and soon he had shot the German wingman in flames. But just in that moment, the leader of the German section hit Usov's plane and he was forced to bail out. Now only the two leaders, the Russian and the German, remained in the air. The German pilot turned against Luganski. The Soviet ace was just come in to land. A small touch down with lowered landing gears probably saved his life. A stream of enemy rounds passed slightly above his plane. While closing his landing gears, Luganski entered combat. Following his first run, the German climbed to make his next attack. He had the advantage - Luganski was flying slowly at deck. The Bf 109 came after him again and opened fire. Several shells slammed into Luganski's Yak. The canopy and instruments panel were damaged, but the plane still was able to fight.

    Luganski, noticing the top class of his adversary and aware that his own aircraft was almost out of fuel, realized that he had only one chance of surviving - to use the Yak's superior horizontal. The German pilot, obviously certain of his success, entered a turn fight. After few very sharp rounds, Luganski had the Bf 109 in his gun sight. A fire burst shattered the German’s cockpit hood, injured the pilot and cut the engine power off. The German aircraft slid in the air for a moment, then it made a belly-landing 3 kms from the Soviet airfield. Soviet soldier rushed to capture him and suddenly the hunter had become the prey. Luganski saw this and a few minutes later he landed on nothing but fuel fumes. The duel had lasted no more than 7 minuts long, but it was enough to completely exhaust Luganski. The German pilot was captured: It turned out that his name was Otto. On his killboard were 70 victories, including 30 on Eastern Front. He had just been appointed for the Oak Leaves to his Knight’s Cross. Next day the commander of the 1st Ukrainian Front, Marshal I.S. Koniev arrived at airfield. He inspected the wreck of the German ace’s Bf 109, and decided to award Luganski a second Golden Star, so Luganski received his second Soviet Hero title on 1 July 1944. By that time, his victory score had rosen to 33, achieved during 335 combat sorties.

    Comment: As yet, it has not been possible to completely verify the identity of the German fighter pilot ”Otto” portraited by Luganski above. Any suggestion by the readers will be welcomed.
    During the battle of Lvov, Luganski often flew on free hunting missions with the Soviet Hero Yewgeniy Mienshutin acting as wing man. Once, they encountered a pair of Bf 109, one of them with a bright red nose, over the front line Mienshutin soon downed the leader of the pair, while Luganski hit the 'red-nosed' wingman with a long burst from a very short distance. The enemy plane hit the ground, but did not explode. The Soviets 'investigated' the body of this Bf 109’s pilot - it turned out to be an Italian pilot named Gibelli, credited with 50 (!? - after Luganski relation) kills.

    In that period, the people of Alma Ata decided to raise funds to equip Luganski’s whole squadron with twelve of the brand new Yak-3 fighters! The 'Komsomolec Kazakhstana' squadron was included to Luganski's 157th GvIAP. Shortly afterwards, the regimment recived the name-of-honour 'Sandomirskiy' after its great achievements in the air over the city of Sandomierz (Poland). Unit also was awarded with the Bohdan Chmielnickiy and Alexander Nevski Medals.

    Luganski finished the war with the rank of Major. His final score was 37 personal and 6 shared victories, on a total of 390 combat missions. Luganski's Fighter Aviation Regiment was credited with the destruction of 245 enemy aircraft in the air. In 1957 Luganski was promoted to Major-General, and in 1964 he retired. He passed away in 1977, in Alma Ata.

    WW II ACE STORIES
     
  10. skunk works

    skunk works Ace

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  11. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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  12. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    "There is a romanticized story about Victor Talakikhin’s ramming of a German aircraft, which ends happily, in Alexis Tolstoy et al, Ram Them! Tales about Daring Soviet Airmen (Moscow: Foreign Languages Publishing House, 1943), pp. 17-24. In the official Soviet history, which credits him as one of the first to use that tactic, it is recorded that after four more victories the lieutenant was killed in an air battle (p. 59)."

    Soviet Air Power and Victory in World War II
     
  13. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    According to "Soviet Lend-Lease Fighters Aces of World War 2", "On one ocassion, a Tomahawk was able to complete two ramming attacks in the same sortie and still fly his battered back to base with damage that was repaired in just a matter of hours."
     
  14. Sloniksp

    Sloniksp Ставка

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    This is excellent information. Thank you!
     
  15. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    My pleasure :). Always willing to help LOL.
     
  16. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    to your original topic your date is incorrect as it was before December of 43 with the Sturmstaffel 1 with armored Fw 190A-6-A-8's and only later it was thought it could be beneficial to continue the ramming with possibility of the pilots escape or not.
     
  17. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    Were you responding to Hufflepuff Erich?
     
  18. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    [SIZE=+2]Ramming Aircraft with Breakaway Cockpit[/SIZE]This was a patent application by Walter Wundes of Gotha, and was applied for on October 10, 1944. There were two basic designs for the aircraft, both were designed to have the cockpit "ejected" or broken away at the moment of impact
    • Figure 1 shows a small, rocket-propelled plane. It looks as if the pilot could lie almost completely flat, perhaps for the shock of impact.
    • Figure 2 shows a larger plane, probably jet powered, but possibly also rocket powered. The cockpit was in a pod attached to the fuselage, and had a type of probe or fuse which protruded from the nose.
    Please see below for a translation of the five page document that accompanied this drawing:
    [​IMG]
    [SIZE=+1]Gotha Ramming Aircraft[/SIZE]
    This design depicts a ramming aircraft, fitted with a breakaway cockpit. A ramming aircraft can only successfully destroy an enemy aircraft when it impacts directly on the target aircraft.
    In this case, both aircraft become entangled and will crash together.
    To give the pilot of the attacking aircraft the opportunity to save himself, it is necessary that he can get free from his aircraft either shortly before or after the impact.
    It is already known how to separate the pilot's seat from the aircraft by means of special devices. There is however no certainty
    that the pilot can get free from the aircraft, because certain connections might be entangled by the impact.
    If the attack occurs from underneath, then the pilot's seat must be ejected downwards.
    If the attack comes from above, then only a separation of the pilot seat upwards can save the pilot.
    To assure that in both of these cases the cockpit breaks away from the aircraft, it is recommended for the front of the cockpit to be designed as an armored cone. Such an aircraft will easily bore through the the assaulted aircraft with its armored cone.
    The fuselage of the attacking aircraft will remain stuck in the assaulted aircraft, whereas the cockpit will detach itself like a projectile from the attacking aircraft.
    The cockpit can also be attached outside the main fuselage, and the nose to be fitted with an explosive device which, at the moment of impact, bursts a hole in the assaulted aircraft, for the detachable cockpit to slide through. This explosive device can also be detonated at at will.
    To give the pilot an optimal view during normal flight, it is recommended to design an adjustable seat to protect the pilot against debris. At the moment of impact, a device will assure the seat to recline automatic. It is useful to provide the seat with a device to hurl the pilot out of the cockpit.
    Since, according to the design, the cockpit is in the front of the aircraft, it is possible to keep the actual fuselage as simple as possible, by providing an aerodynamically covered cross-shaped frame that serves as fuselage and wing. Such an aircraft can be built easily and at little cost. The strong frame can easily cut the attacked airplane into pieces.
    The design is shown on the drawings in two examples.
    Fig.1 shows a ramming aircraft in side-view and partial cross-section.
    Fig.2 shows a view in direction 2-2 of Fig.1.
    Fig.3 shows a ramming aircraft with a cockpit attached outside the fuselage.
    Fig.4 shows a view in direction 4-4 of Fig.3
    The ramming aircraft according to Fig. 1 and 2 has a fuselage (1) and wings (2) which are formed by the cross-shaped frame (3). In front of the frame (3), in flight direction, is the cockpit (4), which houses the pilot in a half lying and half sitting position. The cockpit is cone-shaped as a projectile and armored. The back of the seat (5) can be rotated about an axis (6), to give the pilot a good view during normal flight. Shortly before the ramming attack, the pilot reclines the back of the seat (5) to a lying position, as so to be protected against injuries during impact.
    In front of the cockpit a safety device (7) can be provided, which automatic reclines the back of the seat at the moment of impact, in case the pilot is incapacitated. The cockpit is at (8) and (9) connected to the fuselage. These connections will be break at the moment of impact or by means of an explosive device. This will also disconnect any control connections (10).
    In the design shown in Fig.3 and 4 the cockpit (4) is attached outside the fuselage (1) and connected with this by means of an aerodynamic cover.
    The fuselage (1) is made up out of a light trunk (11), which has ribs (12) welded to its side which has an aerodynamic covering and forms the wing (2).
    With an aircraft like this, the pilot has the option of aiming the fuselage (1) at the assaulted aircraft, or use the cockpit (4) itself in the ramming attack. In both cases the cockpit (4) will separate from the fuselage (1) as a result of the impact.
    The connection between the cockpit (4) and the fuselage (1) can be designed that, by means of springs or an explosive device, the cockpit will automatic or at will be ejected in a forward direction. This gives the pilot the opportunity to eject with the cockpit even without a ramming action. In order to provide the pilot with the possibility to leave the cockpit during free fall, the cockpit has a spring or a similar device (13) which ejects the pilot after engaging the corresponding release mechanism.
    The cockpit is provided in the front with an explosive device (14) which detonates either at the moment of impact or at random, and so rips a hole into the assaulted aircraft, through which the ramming aircraft's cockpit can slide.
    The design can be build powered or as a glider.
    [SIZE=+1]Specifications[/SIZE]
    1. Ramming aircraft with breakaway cockpit. Distinguished by a cone-shaped, armored cockpit (4) which forms the front section of the aircraft.
    2. Ramming aircraft as in 1, distinguished by a cockpit (4) attached atop of the fuselage (1).
    3. Ramming aircraft as in 1 & 2, distinguished by an explosive device (14) provided in the front of the cockpit (4).
    4. Ramming aircraft as in 3, distinguished by an explosive device (14) which can also be detonated at will.
    5. Ramming aircraft as claimed in claim 1,2,3 or 4, where the cockpit (4) has a mechanism (13) for the ejection of the pilot
    6. Ramming aircraft as in claim 1 to 5, where the back of the pilot's seat (5) can be reclined so that the pilot is protected by the cone-shaped cockpit.
    7. Ramming aircraft as in 1 to 5, distinguished by that the back of the seat (5) reclines automatic at the moment of impact.
    8. Ramming aircraft as claimed in any of the claims 1 to 7, which has, behind the cockpit (4) in flight direction, a cross-shaped frame (3) which is has an aerodynamic covering and forms fuselage (1) and wings (2).​
    [SIZE=+1]Gothaer Wagonfabrik AG, Gotha.[/SIZE]

    Oddities Rammer Aircraft Luft '46 entry
     
  19. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    "Flying at high altitudes, and devastating targets with both high explosives and incendiaries, the Superfortresses conducted very long range missions from recently captured island bases in the western Pacific. Although ill-equipped to defend the home islands, the Japanese Army Air Force threw itself ito the task wholeheartedly. Fighter sentai initially attempted to repel the B-29s through conventional means, but pilots soon realized that the bomber was virtually impossible to shoot down using these tactics. As a final resort, units formed specialist ramming flights, and these proved highly successful up until the arrival of the USAAF escort fighters in April 1945. Detailing some of the most remarkable aerial engagements of the war this volume reveals the huge sacrifice made by the JAAF in the final year of the war as it fought in vain to defend Japan.
    By 1944 the war was going badly for the Japanese. The first B-29 attacks against Japan came from China-Burma-India theatre. B-29s were stripped of weight, and due to the long distance fuel problems forced them to carry small bomb loads. The Japanese were waiting and ready, with night fighters and searchlights, and anti-aircraft guns. The Japanese also had an early warning Radar network which kept them well informed. On August 20, 76 B-29s took off to bomb the iron and steel factories at Yawata. They were met by intense flak, and over 100 fighter planes. This raid produced the first ramming by Japanese aircraft. This mission was completed with 17 enemy fighters shot down, 13 probables, and 12 damaged. 14 B-29s were lost and 8 damaged by flak. The battle between the B-29s and the Japanese fighters was on. Immediately Americans were aware of the Japanese pilots great exaggerations of kills. This continued throughout the conflict. There is no doubt the ramming tactics and suicide attacks were a force to be reckoned with."

    B-29 HUNTERS OF THE JAAF
     
  20. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    "On September the 15th 1940, Sgt Ray Holmes spotted a Dornier 17 heading towards Buckingham Palace. With no ammunition left, Holmes decided to ram the his Hurricane into the tail fin of the German Dornier causing the tail to separate and the plane to crash into Victoria Station. Unfortunately Holmes also lost control of his aircraft and had to bale out. His Hurricane crashed into Buckingham Palace Road."
     
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