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German rockets over the Congo | DW Documentary

Discussion in 'History' started by AndrewvanZyl, Aug 1, 2020.

  1. AndrewvanZyl

    AndrewvanZyl Occasional commenter



    Once upon a time, West German engineer Lutz Kayser and the Zairean dictator Mobutu Seso Seko wanted to conquer space. But in the middle of the Cold War, German rockets over the rainforest unsettled the superpowers and threatened the daring vision. It sounds like a mixture of political thriller and adventure story, yet it is based on real events: In 1969, Lutz Kayser and other members of a student consortium won a research contract from the German government to develop alternative forms of propulsion for the European rocket program. Kayser and a group of dyed-in-the-wool tinkerers built a cheap rocket that not only had a simple design, but it even used a VW wiper motor to control the injection of fuel into the engines. During the research project, the team held a total of 2,000 combustion tests at its launch pad near Heilbronn. When the German government cut funding for the project in the early 19
     

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