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BMW 109-558

From PlaneSpottingWorld, for aviation fans everywhere

The BMW 109-558 is a liquid fuelled sustainer rocket motor developed by BMW at their Bruckmühl facility[1] in Germany during the Second World War.

The 109-558 (109 for the Reichsluftfahrtministerium, or RLM, designation for rocket and jet projects)[2] was designed as a sustainer rocket for the Henschel Hs 117 surface-to-air missile.[3] It was tubular, measuring 12.5 cm (4.9 in) diameter and about 46 cm (18 in) long overall.[4] The engine had a compressed air tank to pump fuel, and tanks for the fuels, SV Stoff (nitric acid) and R-Stoff (a hypergolic hydrocarbon codenamed Tonka).[5] SV-Stoff was used to cool the combustion chamber.[6]

The complete engine was about 2.4 m (7 ft 10 in) long and weighed about 160 kg (350 lb).[7] It was capable of propelling an Hs 117 at 900–1,000 km/h (560–620 mph; 490–540 kn), with throttle control by sliding valves in the exhaust nozzle, operated by a servomotor controlled by a Mach meter.[8]

The 109-558 took forty to sixty hours to produce, at a cost of RM 400-500 each.[9]

The motor was fitted to the Hs 117 and Hs 117H, but neither became operational before war's end.


  1. Christopher, John. The Race for Hitler's X-Planes (The Mill, Gloucestershire: History Press, 2013), p.127.
  2. Christopher, p.124.
  3. Christopher, p.127.
  4. Christopher, p.127.
  5. Christopher, p.127.
  6. Christopher, p.127.
  7. Christopher, p.127.
  8. Christopher, p.126.
  9. Christopher, p.127.


  • Christopher, John. The Race for Hitler's X-Planes. The Mill, Gloucestershire: History Press, 2013.