Date: 1929 (model made 1985)
Country of Origin: Germany
Overall: 7 3/4 in. tall x 3 1/2 in. diameter (19.69 x 8.89cm)
Other (motor only): 6 3/4 in. tall (17.15cm)
Aluminum, overall; on wooden stand with felt backing
The Rumanian-German rocket pioneer Hermann Oberth achieved fame for his landmark 1923 book, "Die Rakete zu den Planetenräumen" (The Rocket into Interplanetary Space). During his stay in Berlin in 1930, Oberth conceived of a combustion chamber conical in shape he called the Kegeldüse (cone nozzle). It was to be made of steel with a heavy copper lining to withstand the heat of combustion. The two halves bolted together. Officially tested by the Reich Institute for Chemistry and Technology on 23 July 1930, the Kegeldüse burned for 90 seconds, consuming 6 kilograms (13 pounds) of liquid oxygen and 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds) of gasoline and producing a constant thrust of about 7 kilograms (15.5 pounds). One of Oberth's assistants for these tests was the eighteen-year-old Wernher von Braun.
Karlheinz Rohrwild of the Hermann Oberth-Raumfahrt-Museum in Feucht, Germany, made this 1:1 model and gave it to the Smithsonian.
Gift of Karlheinz Rohrwild