By Robert Forczyk
Not able to behavior floor operations at the eu continent until eventually Allied energy used to be marshalled for a full-scale invasion, the British executive dependent its grand approach in global struggle II on a prolonged crusade of aerial bombardment of Nazi Germany's towns on the way to deliver the 3rd Reich to its knees. on the center of this approach have been the rising applied sciences of the heavy bomber, mixed with night-navigation and precision-bombing recommendations. The RAF brought the massive four-engined Avro Lancaster in 1942 and used it to spearhead this aerial offensive. In reaction, the Luftwaffe created an elite nightfighter strength dependent basically upon the Bf one hundred ten to counter the RAF bombers. even if the Bf one hundred ten had failed miserably as an afternoon fighter over England in 1940, it stumbled on its area of interest as a nightfighter. The Luftwaffe was once speedy to equip it with airborne radar that allowed it to intercept and break Lancasters over Germany. In flip, the RAF followed countermeasures similar to the Monica rearward-looking radar to alert Lancaster crews to the method of nightfighters. The Lancaster heavy bomber was once built with rear and dorsal turrets that gave it a few probability to force off nightfighters applying the normal tactic of attacking from above and behind.
In might 1943, notwithstanding, the Luftwaffe without notice constructed a singular technical and tactical method of attacking RAF bombers - the Schräge Musik weapon method, which fastened upward-firing 20mm cannons in a Bf one hundred ten nightfighter. the recent tactic proved amazingly winning, and British bombers may be attacked from lower than without caution. quickly, the Luftwaffe determined to equip a 3rd of its nightfighters with Schräge Musik and started to inflict grievous losses upon Lancaster bomber devices within the interval from August 1943 to March 1944. For its half, the RAF didn't discover the recent German tactic for 6 an important months, within which time its Lancaster bombers have been nearly defenceless in contrast new possibility. In time, besides the fact that, the German good thing about shock was once misplaced and the RAF constructed countermeasures to accommodate the recent hazard. The duel among upgraded Bf 110s and Lancasters within the evening skies over Germany grew to become more and more ruled by way of state-of-the-art expertise, which might verify the efficacy of strategic bombing.
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Extra resources for Bf 110 vs Lancaster: 1942-45 (Duel, Volume 51)
3 Group: RAF Exning. 4 Group: Heslington Hall. 5 Group: RAF Swinderby. 8 Group:Cherbourg Huntingdon. Lancaster bases June 1942: Coningsby, Swinderby, Waddington. June 1942, June 1943, June 1944: Bottesford, Scampton, Syerston, Woodhall Spa. June 1943 and June 1944: Bardney, Binbrook, Dunholme Lodge, East Wretham, Elsham Wolds, Fiskerton, Langan, Ludford Magna, Skellingthorpe, Warboys, Wickenby, Wyton. /NJG 3 1 Dresden Berlin The duel between Lancasters and Bf 110s would be shaped by three strategic trends that began to surface in 1942.
The nightfighter’s firepower was based upon 20mm cannons, the twin Mauser MG 151/20 weapons in the lower nose of the Bf 110 being capable of pumping 1,500 armour-piercing or high explosive (HE) rounds per minute into the rear of a Lancaster. 92mm Rheinmetall MG 17 machine guns that could fire 4,800 rpm from their location in the fighter’s upper nose. German statistical analysis of Nachtjagd combat indicated that a Lancaster could be shot down with just 18-20 hits from a 20mm cannon, equivalent to a two-second burst.
Both the original Manchester and the Lancaster B II were equipped with a ventral turret to provide protection underneath the bomber, but B II production represented only four per cent of all Lancasters built. 303in. 50in. machine gun until May 1944, and then only 180 aircraft received the upgraded FN 82 turret and another 227 the Rose turret. com PROTECTION German data indicates that the Lancaster required about 20 per cent less damage than the B-17 Flying Fortress to shoot it down. Against Schräge Musik, which aimed at the fuel tanks in the wings, the Lancaster was extremely vulnerable as it was prone to bursting into flames.