V1 Flying Bomb

Also known as Fieseler Fi 103, the V1 flying bomb was a ¬†surface-to-surface, jet-powered missile, which was developed by the Luftwaffe between 1942 and 1944, being first used in combat, against a British target, on June 13, 1944, in Operation Boxroom. It was launched from sloping ramps by steam-powered catapults, flying at 440 miles per hour (720 km/h) to hit targets in England. These ramps, or launching platforms, were located in the Pas-de-Calais, northern France. Being one of Hitler’s secret weapons, the V1 flying bomb was officially codenamed “Kirschkern”, which means “cherry stone”. It was designed by the German engineer Robert Lusser and manufactured by the aircraft manufacturer Fieseler Werke. During the trials, approximately 320 missiles were expended and about 30,000 were used to attack England during the war, most of them falling in London and its outskirts.

Being assembled at the launching sites, the V1 consisted of a streamlined fuselage, straight wings, and tail assembly, which was fitted with elevators and rudder to control changes in pitch and course. The wings were mounted in the middle of the fuselage, whose fore or frontal section was fitted with an 830-kg amatol warhead. The flying bomb was propelled by an Argus As 014 pulse-jet engine, which was mounted above the rear section of fuselage. Guided by gyrocompass-based autopilot, it had a maximum range of 150 miles (240 km). The Fieseler Fi 103 was the first cruise missile effectively used in combat in military history. On March 29, 1945, the last V1 flying bomb fell in England, when the Allied bomber destroyed the last launching sites in Holland.


Type: cruise missile

Wingspan: 17.39′ (5.30 m)

Length: 27.3′ (8.32 m)

Launch weight: 2,180 kg

Warhead: 830 kg



V1 flying bomb (video)

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Thor is Carlos Benito Camacho, the manager and writer of this blog.