The Bouncing Bomb
2-24-98 I was watching a movie the other day about the guy who invented the bouncing bomb. During World War II a guy in England was trying to figure out how to blow up the dams in Germany. It was hard to do because the bomb had to be underwater right next to the back of the dam. What he finally came up with was a spherical 500-pound bomb that was dropped by a bomber when it was exactly sixty feet above the water. It skipped like a stone, and gradually lost momentum till it ran into the dam and sank. Then a depth fuse blew it up, and the dam too.
How do you fly a four-engine bomber exactly sixty feet above the water. They put two spotlights on the plane, one on the nose and one on the tail, and when the two spots of light on the water were one spot, the plane was at the right altitude.
How do you drop the bomb the right distance from the dam? The bombardier had a stick shaped like a Y. On the base of the Y was a hole to look through, and on each end of the forked part was an upright post. The bombardier looked forward through the hole, and when the two ends of the dam were right at the posts, he dropped the bomb.
How clever! It's amazing to me what people can do, what they can come up with.
Here's a version The Bouncing Bomb you can download: