Encyclopedia Astronautica

A11, 1946
Credit: © Mark Wade
German winged orbital launch vehicle. The A11 was planned at Peenemuende to use the A9/A10 transoceanic missile atop the tubby A11 stage to form the basis for launching the first earth satellite - or as an ICBM....

A drawing made for the Army in Texas in 1946 illustrates the design. The A11 stage appears to use six of the A-10 engines. The A10 is nested within the A11 propellant tank, as was the A9 in the A10. The A9 was winged, indicating a gliding recovery or bombing mission. To achieve orbit, either a small kick stage would be needed, or the A9 would have to be significantly lightened compared to the standard version. In any case a payload of only a few 100 kg could be orbited.

LEO Payload: 500 kg (1,100 lb) to a 300 km orbit at 90.00 degrees.

Stage Data - A9/A10/A11

  • Stage 1. 1 x A-11. Gross Mass: 500,000 kg (1,100,000 lb). Empty Mass: 75,000 kg (165,000 lb). Thrust (vac): 13,841.380 kN (3,111,666 lbf). Isp: 247 sec. Burn time: 70 sec. Isp(sl): 210 sec. Diameter: 8.10 m (26.50 ft). Span: 16.50 m (54.10 ft). Length: 25.00 m (82.00 ft). Propellants: Lox/Alcohol. No Engines: 6. Engine: A-10. Status: Study 1942-1945. Comments: Masses estimated; dimensions scaled from drawing.
  • Stage 2. 1 x A-10. Gross Mass: 69,043 kg (152,213 lb). Empty Mass: 16,993 kg (37,463 lb). Thrust (vac): 2,306.896 kN (518,611 lbf). Isp: 247 sec. Burn time: 55 sec. Isp(sl): 210 sec. Diameter: 4.12 m (13.51 ft). Span: 9.00 m (29.50 ft). Length: 20.00 m (65.00 ft). Propellants: Lox/Alcohol. No Engines: 1. Engine: A-10. Status: Study 1942-1945.
  • Stage 3. 1 x A-9. Gross Mass: 16,259 kg (35,844 lb). Empty Mass: 3,000 kg (6,600 lb). Thrust (vac): 288.678 kN (64,897 lbf). Isp: 255 sec. Burn time: 115 sec. Isp(sl): 220 sec. Diameter: 1.65 m (5.41 ft). Span: 3.20 m (10.40 ft). Length: 14.18 m (46.52 ft). Propellants: Lox/Alcohol. No Engines: 1. Engine: A-9. Status: Development 1945.

Status: Study 1944.
Gross mass: 586,000 kg (1,291,000 lb).
Payload: 500 kg (1,100 lb).
Height: 41.50 m (136.10 ft).
Diameter: 8.10 m (26.50 ft).
Span: 15.30 m (50.10 ft).
Thrust: 11,770.00 kN (2,646,000 lbf).
Apogee: 300 km (180 mi).

More... - Chronology...

Associated Countries
Associated Spacecraft
  • A9 German manned rocketplane. Study 1944. Manned, winged boost-glide version of the V-2 missile. It would have been capable of delivering express cargo 600 km from the launch point within 17 minutes. More...

Associated Engines
  • A-10 Thiel Lox/Alcohol rocket engine. 2306.8 kN. Study 1942. Planned for use in A-10. Unique dual-thrust chamber / single nozzle design, which was later shown to be not feasible technically. Isp=247s. More...
  • A-9 Thiel Lox/Alcohol rocket engine. 288.7 kN. Single chamber engine for V-2 series C, A9. Tested 1942-45. Isp=255s. Never went into production in Germany, but formed the basis for successful post-war American and French rocket engines. More...
  • Von Braun-2 Notional Nitric acid/UDMH rocket engine. 461.5 kN. A11, Von Braun studies 1943-1952. Isp=286s. More...

See also
  • Von Braun In 1948, with the US Army's V-2 test project winding down, Wernher Von Braun was ensconced in isolated Fort Bliss. He had, unusually, some time on his hands. He occupied himself by writing a novel concerning an expedition to Mars, grounded on accurate engineering estimates. As an appendix to the novel he documented his calculations. More...
  • Winged In the beginning, nobody (except Jules Verne) thought anybody would be travelling to space and back in ballistic cannon balls. The only proper way for a space voyager to return to earth was at the controls of a real winged airplane. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • Von Braun American manufacturer of rockets and spacecraft. Von Braun, USA. More...

  • Ordway, Frank, and Sharpe, Mitchell, The Rocket Team, Collector's Guide Publishing, Ontario, Canada, 2000.

Associated Stages
  • A-10 Lox/Alcohol propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 69,043/16,993 kg. Thrust 2,306.90 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 247 seconds. More...
  • A-11 Lox/Alcohol propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 500,000/75,000 kg. Thrust 13,841.38 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 247 seconds. Masses estimated; dimensions scaled from drawing. More...
  • A-9 Lox/Alcohol propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 16,259/3,000 kg. Thrust 288.68 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 255 seconds. Winged version. More...

A9/A10/A11 Chronology

End 1942 - . Launch Site: Peenemuende. LV Family: V-2. Launch Vehicle: A9/A10; A9/A10/A11; A9/A10/A11/A12.
  • Peenemuende team's spaceflight plans - . Nation: Germany. Using catapults and wings an A9 might nearly achieve 1000 km range, but the only solution for transatlantic missions was the two-stage A9/A10. The A10 boost stage was to have a total mass of 87 tonnes, of which 62 tonnes would be propellant. The stage's 200 tonne thrust motor would burn for 50 to 60 seconds, taking the A9 upper stage to 1200 m/s. Then the A9 would separate and burn its engine, reaching an apogee of 55 km, followed by a long hypersonic glide in the atmosphere. The second stage would be equipped with air brakes for deceleration over the target, followed by a parachute for recovery in the water. The A9/A10 would reach a maximum velocity of 2800 m/s, and have a range of 4100 km, and a total flight time of 35 minutes. Full-scale development was underway, when further significant work on the project was stopped at the end of 1942. Only the Advanced Projects Group, under the direction of Dip-Ing Roth and Ing Palt, continued design of the missile. It was also planned to develop, after the war, a stratospheric rocket that could travel in 40 minutes from Europe to America. After that, the target was orbital spaceships that could reach 8 km/sec and 500 km orbital altitude. Beyond that, space stations and the burial in space of the embalmed bodies of the rocket developers and men of the rocket service. Manned expeditions to the moon were also a popular theme for research. Finally, the use of nuclear energy to achieve interstellar travel was studied by the Advanced Projects Group.

1945 - During the year - . Launch Vehicle: A9/A10/A11; A9/A10/A11/A12.
  • Von Braun documents plans for future uses of rocket power. - . Nation: Germany. Related Persons: von Braun. Spacecraft: Von Braun Station. As part of a summary of his work on rockets during World War II, Wernher von Braun speculated on future uses of rocket power. These included an observatory in space, the construction of space stations in earth orbit, a space mirror, and interplanetary travel, beginning with trips to the moon.

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