EWR VJ 101

The EEA VJ 101 was a jet powered, vertical take-off, supersonic fast German experimental aircraft development of the Rings South ( EEA), a joint venture of Ernst Heinkel Flugzeugbau GmbH, the Messerschmitt AG and Bölkow GmbH. The term VJ stood for " experimental fighter ". Originally, the machine should be further developed into a VTOL successor to the F- 104G Starfighter. These plans were later dropped, as well as the project VAK 191 B of VFW - Fokker.


The desired flight performance for the previous year 101 based initially on the requirements of the Federal Ministry of Defence after a conventional starting interception and tracking hunters in September 1956. These requirements have expanded considerably on 30 October 1957. There were both all-weather performance and VTOL capabilities. Other additional requirements come from the July 4, 1959, which can be summarized by the formula: VJ - 101 F-104 power = power VTOL. In September 1959, the EEA South thereupon brought before the final concept of the VJ 101C. On September 11, 1959, the main contract was signed, which provided not only the design, production and testing of four experimental aircraft, but also the construction of four floating frames (test rigs ).

PY 101 A

Even after the establishment of the EEA South on 23 February 1959, the company Heinkel and Messerschmitt worked until the fall of 1959 even to their own projects VJ 101 A and 101 B VJ on. When VJ 101 A is the latest version of the Heinkel He 231, which was developed over several years to the construction stage. An important point in the design was the idea to use no separate lift engines for VTOL phase. The VJ 101 A6 was executed in duck wing monoplane design with six built- in swiveling nacelles engines of the type Rolls-Royce RB. 153 with a total thrust of 107 kN equipped ( 10,884 kg ). When the vertical take -off mass was 9,600 kg. In 20,000 m Mach 2 should be achieved.

When planning a lively exchange of ideas with the British company Short Brothers took place, who worked at the same time on the VTOL experimental aircraft Short SC.1, which first flew on 2 April 1957.

VJ 101 B

In contrast Messerschmitts VJ 101 B was a mid-wing monoplane with a delta wing and a conventional tail. The body of the designated P1227 project had an approximately rectangular cross-section. Almost the entire space between the cockpit and tail was needed for the power plant, the. March of four stroke engines of the type RB 153 and a lift engine type RB. 162 existed. To generate Hubschub the gas jets of the four RB. -153 engines were diverted down. It was also examined a version of P 1227/2 with two separate Hubtriebwerken. The initial weight should be at 7,000 kg and 18,000 m in height should be reached Mach 2.5.

VJ 101 C

The finally built by Entwicklungsring South VJ 101 C combined the essential features of Heinkel and Messerschmitt's designs.

The VJ 101 C had trapezoidal wings, a conventional tail unit and swiveling nacelles with two engines on the wing tips. Two more lift engines were installed in the fuselage to supplement the thrust of the four main engines in hovering flight.

The VJ 101 C was a single-seat high-wing monoplane with a length of 17.30 m, a height of 4.13 m and a span of 6.61 m. The maximum takeoff weight was 6100 kg. The aircraft had a total of six engines of the model Rolls-Royce/MAN Turbo RB 145, each with 12.2 kN of thrust ( without afterburner ). The two of them were housed in nacelles on the wingtips. These gondolas could be turned off and landing in a vertical position.

The maximum speed of 1254 km / h (Mach 1.05). This was the VJ 101 C, the first supersonic VTOL aircraft in the world. Other aircraft developments with these skills were about the same time as the Dassault Mirage IIIV and later the Yakovlev Yak - 141st These aircraft were also left all prototypes. It was not until more than 40 years after the first flight of the VJ 101 C was developed for production with the Lockheed Martin F -35B is a vertical take-off and landing aircraft with the capability of supersonic flight.

From the VJ 101 C two prototypes were built: the X1 ( registration D - 9517 ) and X2 ( registration D - 9518 ). On the flight test including the test pilot Hans -Friedrich (Fred) Rammensee was involved. On April 10, 1963, the X1 came with the chief pilot of the EEA, George Bright, at the wheel, in Manching, the first hover. The first normal start took place in August, the first transition ( transition from hover to horizontal flight ) on September 20th of that year instead. The first supersonic flight (Mach 1.04 ) was carried out on 29 July 1964. September 14, 1964, the machine was destroyed by a defect in the flight control system, in which Bright was able to escape with the ejection seat, but was injured.

When VJ 101 C -X2 the gondola engines had afterburner, also a new flight controller was tested. The first transition of the machine took place on 22 October 1965.

In 1968, the project was discontinued. The VJ 101 C -X2 is on display at the Deutsches Museum in Munich. Plans for a refined model VJ 101 D did not get beyond the drawing board stage.