Encyclopedia Astronautica

G-2 Variants
Various technical solutions studied by the Groettrup team for the G-2/R-12 requirement. These included, from left: a G-1 cluster; R-12A dual sequential stage; R-12B single stage; R-12C dual stage; R-12E dual stage; R-12G and R-12H single stage; and R-12K with jettisonable booster engines.
The G-2 design objective was to create the first IRBM - to deliver a 1000 kg payload over a 2500 km range. The missile would use three V-2 derived engines with a total thrust of 100 tonnes. A variety of alternate configurations (R-12A through R-12K) were considered by the German team in Russia. These included parallel and consecutive staging, gimballed motors, and other innovations. The R-12K was particularly interesting because it represented a concept later used on the US Atlas missile - jettisoning of the two outboard engines at altitude to significantly improve range. The G-2 was given the secret designation R-6 and overt designation R-12 by the Russians.

More than ten G-2/R-12 variants were studied in detail to determine the optimum technical solution. All used a common bulkhead between the aft fuel and forward liquid oxygen tank. Two major aerodynamic forms were considered - conical, which was aerodynamic stable regardless of the stage velocity and vehicle centre of gravity, and cylindrical stages with fins. The variants studied were as follows:

  • G-1 cluster - two G-1's as the first stage flanking a single G-1 as the second stage. Lift-off mass 50 tonnes, lift-off thrust 100 tonnes, total span 6 m, length 15 m.
  • R-12A dual sequential stage. Conical form, with 3 G-1 engines in the first stage and a single G-1 engine in the second stage. Length 25.3 m, diameter at the base 4.0 m.
  • R-12B short-range V-2 replacement based on second stage of R-12A. 2.4 m base diameter, 16.0 m long.
  • R-12C dual stage. A variation of the R-12A with a larger-diameter upper stage. 19.2 m long.
  • R-12E dual stage. Cylindrical first stage with aerodynamic stabilising fins
  • R-12G single stage design with conical form
  • R-12H single stage with cylindrical form and aerodynamic stabilising fins
  • R-12K with jettisonable booster engines.

The optimum technical solution seemed to be the R-12G single-stage conical design. In comparing the G-2 with Korolev's R-2, the state commission favored the Groettrup design. But the Russian designers convinced the government that the G-2 required innovations beyond the immediate capability of Soviet technology. Koroelv's R-2, a modest upgrade of the V-2, was selected for production instead.

to a: 2500 km. Standard warhead: 1,000 kg (2,200 lb). Maximum range: 2,500 km (1,500 mi).

AKA: R-6; R-12.
Status: Study 1948.
Gross mass: 50,000 kg (110,000 lb).
Payload: 1,000 kg (2,200 lb).
Height: 24.50 m (80.30 ft).
Diameter: 3.70 m (12.10 ft).
Thrust: 1,000.00 kN (224,800 lbf).

More... - Chronology...

Associated Countries
See also
  • Early Russian Ballistic Missiles The true configuration of the world's first ICBM, the R-7, was revealed only in 1967, ten years after its first test. The Soviet N1 moon rocket was only revealed in 1990, 21 years after its first launch. At the same time, other Russian ballistic missiles were routinely paraded before the cameras of the world press even before they went into service. The extraordinary sensitivity of the Soviet leadership over these Korolev designs may be traced to the fact that they derived from the work of the Groettrup German rocket engineering team. More...
  • missile Guided self-propelled military weapon (as opposed to rocket, an unguided self-propelled weapon). More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • Groettrup Russian manufacturer of rockets. Groettrup Design Bureau, Russia. More...

  • Ordway, Frank, and Sharpe, Mitchell, The Rocket Team, Collector's Guide Publishing, Ontario, Canada, 2000.
  • Michels, Juergen and Przybilski, Olaf, Peenemuende und seine Erben in Ost und West, Bernard & Graefe, Bonn, 1997.
  • Karpenko, A V, Utkin, A F and Popov,A D, Otechestvenniye strategischeskiye raketnoye kompleks, Sankt-Peterburg: Nevskii bastion; Gangut 1999..

G-2 Chronology

1946 September - . Launch Vehicle: G-2.
  • Groettrup team designs 2 stage IRBM. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Groettrup. Summary: Groettrup sketches design for a 2500 km range missile..

1946 October 23 - . LV Family: R-1; R-2; R-5. Launch Vehicle: G-1; G-2; G-3; G-4; R-3.
  • Groettrup team transported to Soviet Union. - . Nation: USSR. Summary: In overnight roundup, 20,000 Germans transported to USSR to transfer technology on aerospace and other technical fields..

1949 March - . Launch Vehicle: G-2.
  • Groettrup team completes G-2 design. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Groettrup. Summary: Groettrup completes design work on G-2, 1,000 kg warhead, 2500 km range..

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