In retrospect the Me
163 need not have suffered from its most serious faults, and the 263
emerged on the Lippisch/Messerschmitt drawing boards in winter 1943-44
to rectify them. The new design had larger and better shaped body
housing more propellants, a new engine with a separate low thrust
cruise chamber for long endurance, and a proper retractable landing
gear. The 163D V1 was completed in spring 1944 but the RLM transferred
the program to Junkers to ease Messerschmitt's production burdens. At
Dessau Prof Hertal improved the 263A-1 into the Ju 248, with automatic
slats, a bubble hood and a cut-down rear fuselage, larger flaps and
other changes. Two 30 mm MK 108 cannon were fitted in the wing roots as
the standard armament. The RLM insisted on restoration of the Me 263A-1
designation, and hastened production, planning for the use of the 5,511
lbs (2500 kg) BMW 708 nitric-acid motor when ready, but in the chaos of
late 1944 tooling was never finished, although a single Dessau built
263A-1 flew as a glider in 1944. It was developed by the Soviets but
they soon abandoned the project.
(Messerschmitt Me 263 / Junkers Ju 248)
Messerschmitt AG (Later transferred to Junkers)
main chamber 3,750 hp (1700 kW / 16.67 kN) thrust Walter HWK 109-509C-4
bi-liquid propellant rocket motor burning concentrated hydrogen
peroxide (T-stoff) and hydrazine/methanol (C-stoff) and a 660 lbs (300
kg / 2.94 kN) cruise chamber.
Maximum speed 620 mph (1000 km/h) at height; time to 49,231 ft (15000
m) about 3 minutes.
endurance, about 1 hour including 15 minutes under main power.
4,640 lbs (2105 kg) with a loaded take-off weight of 11,354 lbs (5150
31 ft 2 in (9.50 m); length 25 ft 10.5 in (7.88 m); height 8 ft 10.25
in (2.70 m).
Armament: Two 30
mm MK 108 cannon with 60 rounds each mounted in the wing roots.
163D (one aircraft only), Me 263A/A-1, Junkers Ju 248.
163D V-1) spring 1944; (Me 263A-1) flew as a glider in August 1944.