Due to the research
of a few German scientists from as early as 1935, (Dr Adolf Busemann, Dr Albert
Betz, Dr Waldemar Voigt and Prof. Alexander M Lippisch) Prof. Lippisch filed
a patent on a variable sweep wing in 1942.
|Dr Voigt tested the patent in a
wind tunnel and in July 1942, Voigt and his team started designing such an
aircraft,known as Project P 1101, backed by Messerschmitt. Ultimately,
due to extensive work on the Me 262, the work on the P 1101 proceeded very
slowly, until 1944, when the Oberkommando der Luftwaffe issued a requirement
for a single-seat, single engine, turbojet fighter with a higher speed than
the Me 262. Messerschmitt entered the P 1101 design and got the contract.
Messerschmitt then started with design and production of a prototype at a secret facility at Oberammergau. The design provided the pilot with an ejector seat and armament consisting of two 30mm MK 108 cannon, 100 r.p.g. The wings could be set to two different positions, forward position at an angle of approximately 80 degrees and rearward position with wings rearward swept at a much sharper angle.
Before the prototype could be completed, however, US forces discovered the Oberammergau facility and under supervision of Robert Woods (chief designer and co-founder of the Bell Aircraft Company),the P1101 was transported to the USA. There Robert Woods designed a better mechanism for adjusting the sweep of the wings in flight. In 1949 a variable sweep wing aircraft, the Bell X-5, was designed, using the P 1101as a basis. The Bell X-5 made its first flight on June20, 1951. The Bell X-5 is the basis of modern variable sweep wing aircraft.
(Original calculated data as submitted to the RLM)
|Type||Single-seat interceptor fighter|
|Power Plants||One Heinkel-Hirth 011 axial-flow turbojet rated at 2,866 lb.s.t|
|Armament||Two 30mm MK108 cannon with 100 rounds per cannon|
|Performance||Maximum speed at sea level : 553 mph
Maximum speed at 22,966 ft : 610 mph
Initial climb rate : 4,370 ft/min
Time to 6,500 ft : 1.5 min
Maximum ceiling : 45,275 ft
|Weights||Empty equipped : 5,724 lb
Loaded : 8,948 lb
|Dimensions||Span : 27 ft. 1/3 in.
Length : 30 ft. 1 in.
Height : 9 ft. 2 1/4 in.
Wing area : 170.5 sq.ft.