] The location permitted rocket test flights over water with monitoring along about 320 km of the Pomeranian coast. Peenemunde also developed WWII night-navigation and radar systems (Dr. Johannes Plendl).

Army Research Center Peenemünde

Following earlier experiments at Kummersdorf, the Army Research Center Peenemünde (Heeresversuchsstelle Peenemünde in German, abbreviated HVP) [Ordway & Sharpe. 36 NOTE: a different spelling of "Heeresversuchsanstalt" was used on a June 2, 1943 British intelligence report (Irving. 65), while "Heeresanstalt Peenemünde" appears on a German document with Wasserfall velocity calculations.(Klee & Merk. 78)] was founded in 1937 as one of five military proving grounds under the Army Weapons Office (Heeres Waffenamt). [Dornberger. 85]

HVP Organization

Dr Wernher von Braun was the HVP technical director (Dr Walter Thiel was deputy director) and there were nine major departments: [Ordway & Sharpe. 38]
*Technical Design Office (Walter J H "Papa" Riedel)
*Aeroballistics and Mathematics Laboratory (Dr Hermann Steuding)
*Wind Tunnel (Dr Rudolph Hermann)
*Materials Laboratory (Dr Mäder)
*Flight, Guidance, and Telemetering Devices ("Bord-, Steuer- und Messgeräte, BSM"]

For personnel being relocated from Peenemünde, the new organization was to be designated Entwicklungsgemeinschaft Mittelbau (Mittelbau Development Company) [Ordway & Sharpe. 291] and Kammler's order to relocate to Thuringia arrived by teletype on January 31, 1945. [Ordway & Sharpe. 288] On February 3, 1945, at the last meeting at Peenemünde was held regarding the relocation, the HVP consisted of A-4 development/modification (1940 people), A-4b development (27), Wasserfall and Taifun development (1455), support and administration (760). [Ordway & Sharpe. 289] The first train departed on February 17 with 525 people enroute to Thuringia (including Bleicherode, Sangerhausen (district), and Bad Sachsa) and the evacuation was complete in mid-March. [Dornberger. 247]

Luftwaffe Test Site

Test aircraft ("Erprobungsflugzeug") at Peenemünde West included the V-1 flying bomb, the Heinkel He 176 (flown at Peenemünde on June 20, 1939), [Klee & Merk. 117] and the Messerschmitt Me 163 rocket-powered fighter (named 'Peenemünde 30' by British intelligence). [Ordway & Sharpe. 117]

Peenemünde after World War II

In accordance with an agreement, the Red Army destroyed the site with explosives. Most destruction of the technical facilities of Peenemünde took place between 1948 and 1961. Only the power station, the airport, and the railway link to Zinnowitz remained functional. The plant for production of liquid oxygen lies in ruins at the entrance to Peenemünde. Very little remains of most of the other buildings and facilities.

The Peenemünde Historical and Technical Information Centre opened in 1992 in the shelter control room and the area of the former power station and is an Anchor Point of ERIH, the European Route of Industrial Heritage. Special show-pieces are the reproduction of the Fieseler Fi-103 and the V-2 rocket.

ee also

* Bombing of Peenemünde in World War II - Operation Hydra

Cultural References

*In Thomas Pynchon's novel "Gravity's Rainbow" (1973), Peenemünde plays an important role.
*In the novels of the Colonization series, Peenemünde survives World War II and becomes a major space launch center.
*In Robert Ludlum's novel "The Rhinemann Exchange" (1974), Peenemünde plays an important role.
*In the comic "Ministry of Space" by Warren Ellis, Peenemünde is captured by the British.
*In the novel The Way the Crow Flies, Peenemünde and Mittelbau-Dora play a part in the story background.
*In the novel Fatherland, Peenemünde is the site of the Third Reich's space programme.
*In the novel Space, many scenes early in the book take place at Peenemünde
*In the novel "Moonraker" by Ian Fleming, in the opening chapter Bond is told of 008's safe return from a mission to Peenemünde.
*In the movie Shining Through, the character Linda Voss photographs the plans of the Peenemunde base.
*The movie Operation Crossbow, starring George Peppard and Trevor Howard, was a highly fictionalized account of the attack on Peenemünde during World War II, but still touches on the high points of the operation.
*In the game , Peenemünde is a playable level.
*In the second book of the "Danger Boy" time travel series, by Mark London Williams, "Dragon Sword," Peenemünde is a key setting, references to which recur later in the series.
*In the novel Vengeance 10, by Joe Poyer, Peenemünde is the location of the A-10 program and the place from which the first Nazi Moon Shot takes place.
*Peenemunde was featured in Leiji Matsumoto's movie, The Cockpit, where a young Luftwaffe pilot has to escot a DO-200 to an atomic Bomb test site at Peenemünde.


* [ Pro-Polish site]
* [ V2 Rocket site]
* [ Index of Smithsonian interviews]

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