Henschel's Hs.293
Walter 109-507 Motor
Schmidding 109-513 Motor

Henschel Flugzeug Werke had been working on a guided bomb project before the outbreak of the war. Their unit was originally based around an existing standard SC500 bomb, along similar lines to the Ruhrstahl SD1400 X "Fritz X" and designed to allow a more accurate delivery of the explosives to the target by having the bomb aimer in the parent aircraft use radio controls to guide it.

However, unlike "Fritz X", to give greater control over the fall of the round, it was fitted with wings, an aerodynamic tail unit carrying control surfaces, and a rocket motor to boost the speed of the missile for greater penetration and to prevent interception during the flight.



[Henschel Hs.293 in Flight]

Having experienced modern bomber warfare in Spain, Germany was only too aware of the difficulties of delivering disabling payloads against shipping. This included both the problems of accuracy against pinpoint targets such as ships in open water, and the vulnerability of dive bombers when attacking massed formations of shipping. With the growth of interest in rocket and missile technology, Henschel had established a guided missile development team and Dr. Herbert Wagner had become its head early in 1940.

The resulting project finally designated Hs.293 by the RLM, was a mid-wing, controllable bomb. It superficially resembled the SC500 family upon which it was based, with the explosives carried in the fore section of a cylindrical missile, to which were added square shaped wings, and an extended aft section carrying the guidance and control systems. The FuG 203/230 "Kehl-Strassburg" radio control system was used to guide the missile onto target, with the bomb aimer of the parent bomber giving control signals via a joystick, using line-of-sight direct vision, for target approach.

The Hs.293 was powered away from the parent aircraft, to bring it to a higher speed than that achieved at launch. This was to provide a greater penetration impetus, and give the missile a degree of protection from anti-aircraft defences. For power, the Hs.293 carried a Walter HWK 109.507 liquid rocket in a streamlined pod slung beneath the main body of the missile on a tripod cradle. The rocket outlet from the motor's combustion chamber was angled downwards at 30o, with the thrust line of the motor adjustable to lie through the centre of gravity of the bomb.

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