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The Henschel Hs 130 was part of a German high altitude research programme.


Today few people - even World War ll aircraft buffs - are familiar with the Hs 130, yet it was one of the biggest aircraft-development programmes in history. It was not one aircraft but a large series of quite different aircraft. and it all began when, in 1938. Dr Seewald, of the DVL, asked Henschel if they were interested in building a high-altitude research machine to test pressure cabins and DVL engine turbochargers. The result was a major pressure-cabin development programme, which led to the Hs 128 V1 flown at Adlershof in 1939 on two 1,175hp DB 601 engines with DVL turbo-chargers. The Hs128 V2 had the same 85ft 4 1/2 in wing but Jumo 210 engines with two-stage turbochargers. and was expected to exceed 50,000ft. By November 1940 three prototypes had flown of the Hs 130A recce aircraft with shorter span and remote-control cameras. Various DB 601 or 605 engines were used, and eventually span extended beyond that of the 128 in the 1943 batches of A-0/U6. The 130B bomber was not built, but there were three Hs 130C bombers. in the 1939-42 Bomber B programme, and these were totally new aircraft with 1,85Ohp DB 603 engines. crew of four, two twin MG 131 barbettes plus MG 15 in the tail, and bomb load of 8.818lb (4000kg). DB engines for the 1 30D were not developed, and the final stage accomplished was the Hs 130E series with the HZ-Anlage, comprising two l,86Ohp DB 603B supercharged by a DB 605T in the fuselage. The 130E V1 flew in September 1942, and several variants flew later at heights close to 50.000ft. The 130F was to have had four 1,800hp BMW 801TJ.


  1. Wood, Tony and Bill Gunston. Hitler's Luftwaffe. Salamander Books. 1997. ISBN 0 86101 935 0 Page 201