Peenemünde: F1 the giant V2 missile factory at Werk Süd

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Aerodynamic fin parts bearing counterbalance weight visible
A group of V2 missile relics laying in the open within the F1 fenced-off area: aerodynamic fin parts including bearing and counterbalance weight (upper right) are visible. See gallery map below for location details.

Werk Süd (South Works) Peenemünde: Highlighting the Fertigungshalle Eins or F1 V2 missile factory

In the gallery below you will find reconnaissance images and photos from our field trips exploring the ruins of the Peenemünde Army research station on Usedom island. This gallery features images of the ruins of the gigantic V2 missile pre-production factory and slave labour camp at Werk Sud called Fertigungshalle Eins (F1). Modeled on the Volkswagen works at Wolfsburg, the F1 hall was once one of the largest open-span concrete factory buildings in Europe, if not the world.

The F1 missile factory: its vast size reflected its ambition

By August 1943 the F1 V2 missile factory at Peenemünde was central to Nazi armaments plans as one of the three sites each expected to produce 300 V2 missiles per month, being one-third of a grand total expected to reach 900 missiles monthly by early 1944. The RAF’s Operation Hydra raid, in the night and early morning of 17/18 August 1943, involving over 600 British bombers, actually caused only slight damage to F1; although sadly it killed 16 slave workers domiciled in the ground floor ‘basement’. However, the raid did sufficient damage to the research complex as a whole and planners were forced to move all production of the V2 missile to a secure bomb-proof site under the Heartz mountains at Nordhausen in central Germany.

The picture gallery also shows the area once enclosed by the almost equally giant Repair and Maintenance workshops, just 120 meters to the north of the missile factory. The ghost of the V2 rocket can be seen in the plethora of decaying relics that still litter the ground in many of these locations. Please note: some of the areas illustrated here are not open to the public and there is a threat from unexploded ordinance.  See our information page for details of expert guided tours (in English and German) of these areas.

 

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About V2 Rocket History 10 Articles
At V2 Rocket History our aim is to investigate the history and technology of the A4-V2 missile, and share the results in the most accessible and engaging way possible. Our general approach is to highlight the engineering and industrial aspects of the subject.