Missile, Air-to-Air, X-4
The German X-4 was a small air-to-air missile of World War II that could be fired at heavily armed Allied bombers from a distance. To prevent jamming, guidance was by wires running between the missile and launch aircraft, rather than by radio. Slated for use on the Me 262 jet fighter, the X-4 could also have been fired from such piston-engine aircraft as the Ju 88, Ju 388, and Fw 190, all of which launched test missiles beginning in August 1944.
A BMW 109-548 liquid-fuel rocket engine powered the missile. Ruhrstahl produced 1,000 X-4 airframes in late 1944, but an Allied air raid destroyed the BMW engines and production lines, a blow from which the program never recovered. This artifact was a gift of the Thiokol Chemical Corporation, Reactions Motors Division, which had acquired it from the U.S. military for post-World War II testing.
Gift of Reaction Motors Div., Thiokol Chemical Corp.
- Country of Origin
- Ruhrstahl AG
- CRAFT-Missiles & Rockets
- Overall: 78 3/4 in. long x 22 5/8 in. fin span, 132.3 lb. (200.03 x 57.5cm, 60kg)
- Other (explosive): 44 lb. (20kg)