Radar and radio terms that appear in the literature of the Bomber War 1939-1945. Refer to “Bomber Command Association News Letter”, “Dresden” by David Irving, “The Other Battle” by Peter Hinchliffe, “The Bomber War” by Robin Neillands and “RAF Strategic Bombing: From Art to Science” by HC “Bill” Sykes.

 

Feb 2002

 

ABC

Royal Air Force

Air Borne Cigar Jamming device to interfere with enemy transmissions. Extremely vulnerable to being homed onto.

 

 

AI

 

Air Interception radar.

 

AIRBORNE GROCER

Royal Air Force

Used to jam Wurzburg radar but could be vulnerable to homing by fighters.

 

Arado 234

Luftwaffe

Ar 234 Blitz, The world's first jet bomber. A few were converted to night-fighters.

 

 

ASPIDISTRA

Royal Air Force

Code name for the ground transmitters operating the DARTBOARD interference system.

 

 

ASPIRIN

 

Royal Air Force

Countermeasure to Knickebien.

 

 

ASV

 

Air to Surface Vessel. Radar used to detect shipping.

 

 

AURAL MONICA

Royal Air Force

Tail warning radar device giving pips over the intercom of aircraft approaching from behind and below

 

 

BIG BEN

Royal Air Force

North Sea patrols to try to detect the guidance system of the German V2 rockets.

 

 

Blenheim,

Royal Air Force

Bristol Twin engines used as bomber, fighter and night-fighter,

 

BLOCKBUSTER

Royal Air Force

A 4,000lb bomb. First used 14 April 1941

 

 

 

BOOZER

 

Royal Air Force

Airborne device which warned that the aircraft carrying it was being monitored by Würzburg gun laying radar or Lichtenstien radars.

 

 

BRIAR

Royal Air Force

Ground transmitter used to jam enemy Würzburg ground receivers.

 

 

BROMIDE

 

Royal Air Force

Counter measure to interfere with Knickebein signals.

 

 

CARPET

Royal Air Force

Airborne jammer of German ground radar.

 

 

 

CAT

Royal Air Force

ground station of OBOE (see Mouse)

 

 

CHAFF

Royal Air Force

(Window) Aluminium strips used to jam enemy radar.

 

 

CIRCUS

 

Royal Air Force

Combined fighter and bomber raids. Started 10 Jan 1941

 

 

 

COAL SCUTTLE

 

Royal Air Force

Modification existing H2S navigational radar to give a visual bearing every 30 seconds on a signal under investigation

 

 

CORKSCREWING

 

Royal Air Force

Evasive manoeuvre adopted by bombers.

 

 

 

CORONA

Royal Air Force

Ground transmitter based at Rugby and Leafield. Used by German speaking operators to transmit confusing messages over the German night-fighter RT control frequencies.

 

 

COUNTER MEASURE

 

System designed to counter effects of enemy system

 

 

CREEP BACK

Royal Air Force

The progressive dropping of bombs before the target was reached.

 

 

DARTBOARD

Royal Air Force

Ground-based interference from "ASPIDISTRA" of enemy RT and WT.

 

 

DINA

Royal Air Force

An American improvement of MANDREL airborne jamming device. Also named PIPERACK when used to counter FuG 220 AI radar

 

Do 17

Luftwaffe

Dornier Used as a night-fighter with an infrared detection system,

 

Do 217

Luftwaffe

Dornier The Do 217J and N were night-intruder or night-fighter versions,

 

 

DR

 

DEAD RECKONING system of navigation

 

 

DRUMSTICK

Royal Air Force

Ground based interference with enemy WT transmissions.

 

 

DUNKEL-NACHTJAGD

Luftwaffe

DARK NIGHT HUNT   German night-fighter zone not backed by searchlights.

 

 

DÜPPEL

Luftwaffe

The German version of WINDOW. Strips of aluminium foil dropped to confuse the ground radar.

 

 

ECM

 

Electronic Counter Measures.

 

 

EMIL

Luftwaffe

Nickname for the Messerschmitt Bf 109E. Single engine fighter.

 

 

EMIL-EMIL

Luftwaffe

Luftwaffe Tracking signals to guide night-fighters to target.

 

 

EUREKA

Royal Air Force

                             Ground station blind homing and approach aid for aircraft.

 

 

FIDGET

Royal Air Force

Interference of enemy high frequency night-fighter transmissions

 

 

FISHPOND

Royal Air Force

Device fitted to H2S to enable wireless operators to scan beneath the bombers for night-fighter attacks from below.

 

 

FLAK

 

Luftwaffe

FLieger Abwehr Kanonen The shells from German anti-aircraft gun

 

 

FLENSBURG

Luftwaffe

(FuG 227) An air interception device homing onto MONICA tail warning radar.

 

 

FLOWER

Royal Air Force

Intruder sortie, usually by Mosquitoes, against German night-fighter airfields during bomber operations.

 

 

FREIJAGD

Luftwaffe

Bf 109s in independent high altitude sweeps over southern Britain to divert Fighter Command's response.

 

 

FREYA

Luftwaffe

(FuG 221) A series of German early warning long range radars.

 

 

FuGe

 

Luftwaffe

Funk Gerät A series of airborne homing devices used to illuminate MANDREL, MONICA, H2S and ASV. Later modifications permitted their use as search radars.

 

 

FuGe25

Luftwaffe

IFF radar on fighters for identification to Würzburg.

 

 

FuGe25a

Luftwaffe

IFF radar on fighters for identification to Freya

 

Fw 190

Luftwaffe

Focke Wulf fighter single engine

 

 

GARDENING

 

Royal Air Force

Code word for mine laying by aircraft

 

 

 

GEE

Royal Air Force

Radar navigational aid which could provide the navigator with a fix from pulses transmitted by three ground stations. Range approximately 300 miles. The pulses displayed on a Cathode Ray Tube provided a reading. The navigator referred the reading to a chart to obtain ground position. First used 11/12 August 1941 

 

 

G-H

Royal Air Force

A two-station radar position finding system used as a navigation and bombing aid.

 

 

GISELA

Luftwaffe

German intruder operation night-fighters following the British bombers back to their bases.

 

GOMORRAH

Royal Air Force

Operation to attack Hamburg

 

 

GRAND SLAM

Royal Air Force

22,000lb bomb. First used by No 617 Squadron 14 March 1945

 

 

GROSS-BATTERIEN

Luftwaffe

Batteries of anti-aircraft guns.

 

 

GROUND GROCER

Royal Air Force

Jamming device used to interfere with Air Interception radar.

 

 

GROUND RECEIVER

 

Ground based station receiving signals.

 

 

GUSTAV

Luftwaffe

Nickname for the Bf 109G.

 

 

H2S

Royal Air Force

“HOME SWEET HOME". A blind bombing aid which produced a radar 'picture' of the terrain over which the aircraft was passing.  First used by No 7 & 35 Squadrons 30 Jan 1943.

 

 

H2X (MICKEY)

 

H2S used in the USAF.

 

 

Halifax

Royal Air Force

Handley Page H.P.57 Heavy bomber, Four engines less known than the Lancaster but almost as important. It was built both with liquid-cooled and radial engines

 

Hampden,

 

Royal Air Force

Handley Page H.P52 Medium bomber, used during the first part of WW2. Heavy losses were suffered on day bomber missions. The Hampden was abandoned by Bomber Command in 1942.

 

 

HAPPY VALLEY

Royal Air Force

Nickname for the Ruhr industrial area.

 

 

 

HEINRICH

Luftwaffe

German transmitter to jam GEE. First used 9/10 August 1942

 

 

HELLE NACHTJAGD

Luftwaffe

ILLUMINATED NIGHT HUNT. German night-fighter interception involving searchlights.

 

HIMMELBETT

Luftwaffe

System of directing night-fighter to a target.

 

 

HOMER

Royal Air Force

Ground-based radio guidance system using transmission from aircraft returning to landing ground.

 

 

IFF

 

IDENTIFICATION FRIEND OR FOE. Equipment carried by aircraft of both sides, which issued a signal identifying it as friendly to own radar stations.

 

INTRUDER

 

Aircraft used to infiltrate into the enemy air space. Often attacking landing aircraft.

 

 

JABO

Luftwaffe

JAGDBOMBER Messerschmitt Bf 109s converted to carry 250Kg bombs and carry out nuisance raids.

 

 

JAGDGESCHWADER

Luftwaffe

Day fighters.

 

 

JAGDSCHLOSS

Luftwaffe

Rotating long range early warning radar.

 

 

JAM

 

To interfere with radio and radar transmissions

 

 

JAMMER

 

An installation to interfere with enemy radar and radio transmissions.

 

 

JOSTLE

Royal Air Force

Airborne jamming device to interfere with enemy RT transmissions.

 

Ju 88

Luftwaffe

Junkers 88, One of the most versatile aircraft of WW2. It began its career as a fast dive bomber and reconnaissance aircraft, and later was used also as, night-fighter and heavy day fighter.

 

 

JUG

Royal Air Force

Nickname for the P-47 Thunderbolt escort fighter.

 

 

KAMMHUBER-LINE

Royal Air Force

Nickname for the system of air defence set up by General Joseph Kammhuber.

 

 

KAMPF GESHWADER

Luftwaffe

Bomber wings.

 

 

KNICKEBEIN

Luftwaffe

German radio beams used to guide their bombers to their targets. Based on LORENZ landing system.

 

 

KORFU

Luftwaffe

(FuG 351) Ground radar used to produce fixes on the bombers using H2S equipment.

 

Lancaster

Royal Air Force

Avro The most used British heavy bomber. Four engines. The Lancaster was a development of the unsatisfactory twin-engine {Manchester}. First used 3 March 1942

 

Liberator

 

Consolidated B-24 heavy bomber. Four engines.

 

 

LICHTENSTEIN

Luftwaffe

(FuG 212) Air interception radar.

 

 

LICHTENSTEINGERÄT

Luftwaffe

(FuG 220) Air Interception search radar effective at 2 miles.

 

LNSF

Royal Air Force

Light Night Striking Force Raids and intruder operations by Mosquito aircraft

 

 

LORAN

Royal Air Force

LOng RANge navigation system based on GEE.

 

 

 

LORENZ

Luftwaffe

Blind landing system developed as a bombing aid. Two radio beams one transmitting morse code dots, the other dashes. Where the beams join the equi-signal a continuous note marks the course. See Knickebein X-gerät and Y-gerät.

 

 

LUCERO

Royal Air Force

Homing beacon

 

 

 

LUFTWAFFE

Luftwaffe

German airforce WW2

 

 

MAHMOUD

Royal Air Force

Night-fighter operation conducted against Luftwaffe night-fighters with a Mosquito joining their landing pattern.

 

 

MAMMUT

Luftwaffe

HOARDING. German long range radar.

 

 

MANDREL SCREEN

Royal Air Force

Airborne radar jamming device 85-135 MHz to counter the Freya early warning system.

 

 

MATTSCHEIBE

Luftwaffe

FOCUSING SCREEN. German name for the glow in the sky from searchlights, flares and fires against which the bombers were silhouetted.

 

Me 109

Luftwaffe

Messerschmitt The Bf 109 was the Luftwaffe's standard fighter throughout WW2. Single engine.

 

Me 110

Luftwaffe

Messerschmitt Bf 110, A heavy twin-engined fighter

 

Me 262

Luftwaffe

Messerschmitt The Me 262 was the first operational jet fighter. Me 262 arrived too late to influence the end of WW2.

 

 

MILK RUN

Royal Air Force

Nuisance sorties over Berlin undertaken by Mosquitoes to activate the German air defence system.

 

 

MILLENNIUM

Royal Air Force

Code name for the first 1000 bomber raid on Cologne 30-31 May 1942.

 

 

MOLING

Royal Air Force

Daylight operation making use of 8-10/10ths cloud cover and bombing on a Gee fix.

 

 

MONICA

Royal Air Force

Tail radar warning device effective up to four miles.

 

 

MOONSHINE

Royal Air Force

Radio jamming device used to deceive the Freya radars by returning their own signal in an amplified form giving the impression of a larger force that in fact existed.

 

Mosquito

Royal Air Force

de Havilland A twin-engined aircraft of plywood monocoque construction, designed originally as a fast, unarmed light bomber also served as fighter-bomber, reconnaissance aircraft and night-fighter. Only matched by the Ju 88 night-fighter versions. First operation 31 May 1942.

 

 

MOUSE

Royal Air Force

Airborne station of OBOE (see Cat).

 

 

NACHTJÜGDLEITSTELLE

Luftwaffe

Night-fighter control

 

 

NAXOS

Luftwaffe

(FuG 227) Ground radar which produced fixes on aircraft using H2S.

 

 

NAXOS 2

Luftwaffe

Airborne version of NAXOS.

 

 

NEPTUN

Luftwaffe

(FuG 216-217-218) German radar warning device of attack from the rear or alternatively, a night-fighter search radar.

 

 

NEWHAVEN

Royal Air Force

Visual ground target marker.

 

 

 

NICKELING

Royal Air Force

 

Code name for leaflet dropping.

 

 

NORDEN

 

United States Air Force bombsite used for precision visual bombing.

 

 

NUISANCE RAIDS

 

One or two aircraft acting alone as intruders to cause a nuisance to the enemy. Often attacking an airfield or a town to set off alarms.

 

 

OBOE

Royal Air Force

Target-finding bombing aid using two transmitting stations - CAT and MOUSE. The beam from CAT set the track to the target. MOUSE plotted the distance from the target. OBOE operators at base could transmit release signals to the crew and bombs would be released. Used for target marking. Used by blind bombing Mosquitos of No 109 Squadron 20-21 Dec 1942.

 

 

OCCULTS

Royal Air Force

Flashing beacon navigational aids used by returning aircraft.

 

 

PARAMETTA

Royal Air Force

Blind target marking.

 

PATHFINDER

Royal Air Force

Aircraft used to mark targets for the main bomber stream often using advanced navigation aids. First operation 18/19 August 1942.

 

PERFECTOS

Royal Air Force

Airborne radar used to home on the IFF equipment carried by the German night-fighters.

 

 

PFF

Royal Air Force

PATHFINDER FORCE. Small groups of aircraft which, after finding the target, put down marker flares to guide the following bombers to the target.

 

 

PIPERACK

Royal Air Force

Airborne jamming device.

 

 

 

POST KLYSTRON

Luftwaffe

Jamming device to counter H2S.

 

 

PUNDITS

Royal Air Force

Flashing beacon to identify an airfield. Using morse code.

 

 

RADAR

 

[RAdio Detection And Ranging]

Used for navigation, target location, search warning, counter measures and jamming. Under continuos development.

 

 

RAMROD

Royal Air Force

A tactical bombing mission with fighter escort.

 

 

RANGER

Royal Air Force

Similar to Circus but usually a deep penetration operation.

 

 

RAYON

Royal Air Force

Ground-based interference of KNICKEBEIN in night-fighter control.

 

 

RAZZLE

Royal Air Force

Phosphorous coated wooden strips transported in water. Razzles were designed to fire crops and forests but with negligible effect.

 

RCM

 

Radio Counter Measures.

 

RDF

 

Radio Direction Finding

 

 

REBECCA

Royal Air Force

Airborne interrogator end of a two-part system using a ground beacon called EUREKA. Designed as a homing system for the identification of ground forces during supply drops.

 

 

RHUBARB

Royal Air Force

Low-level tactical operation from cloud cover

 

RODERICH

Luftwaffe

German jamming device to counter H2S.

 

RT

 

Radio Transmission

 

SABS

Royal Air Force

Stabilised Automatic BombSight. Precision bombsight. Used by No.617 Squadron

 

SCARECROWS

Royal Air Force

Flares which British aircrews believed were being used by the Germans to deceive them into believing they were bombers in flames.

 

SCHRÄGE-MUSIK

Luftwaffe

SLANTED MUSIC. Upward firing 20mm cannons fitted in the fighters fuselage.

 

SCUTTLE

 

Royal Air Force

A roving commission by individual aircraft bombing built up areas through gaps in the cloud, on a GEE fix or ETA at target

 

SEEBURG TISCH

 

Luftwaffe

SEEBURG TABLE Glass screen on which the German night-fighter controllers plotted the course of the raid

 

SERRATE

Royal Air Force

Airborne radar receiver used to intercept  German night-fighters' Lichtenstein bomber detection equipment. Carried on Beaufighters

 

SHAKER

Royal Air Force

A bombing technique using illuminators, the target markers and the followers. The followers using the marked targets rather than GEE to locate the target. The timing of arrival over the target was critical.

 

SHIVER

Royal Air Force

Airborne transmitter used to jam Würzburg radar.

 

SN-2

Luftwaffe

FuG 220 Ai radar using 72, 81 or 91 MHz giving bearing and height. At unaffected by Window.

 

SONNE

Luftwaffe

Navigation aid using ordinary RT receiver only. Used as CONSOL postwar.

 

SPANNER

Luftwaffe

An infra-red device to enable pilot to lock on to the target’s engine heat.

 

Stirling

Royal Air Force

Short S.29 First of the RAF's four-engined heavy bombers. Soon replaced by the Lancaster and Halifax.

 

TALLBOY

Royal Air Force

Streamlined 12000lb bomb that fell at supersonic speed and buried itself deep in the ground before exploding. It was designed for near-misses, destroying its target by an earthquake effect. Used on 15-16 Sept 1943.

 

TI

Royal Air Force

Target Indicator flares used by PFF to mark targets. Used in raid on Berlin 16-17 Jan 1943

 

TINSEL

Royal Air Force

Airborne jamming device used by wireless operators to transmit engine noise over the German night-fighter control frequencies

 

TUBA

Royal Air Force

Jamming device for Freya radar operating in the 70-200 MHz range.

 

 

TWAFFE-HELFERINNEN

Luftwaffe

“Blitz Maidens". German female radar plotters.

 

VILLAGE INN

Royal Air Force

A gun laying radar installed in the rear-turret of some Lancaster bombers allowing blind-firing on an illuminated" target.

 

VISUAL MONICA

Royal Air Force

Tail warning radar device provide CRT information of aircraft approching from behind and below.

 

WANGANUI

Royal Air Force

Coloured flares dropped to sky mark a target.

 

WASSERMANN

Luftwaffe

CHIMNEY German long range radar with a range of up to 190 Km.

 

Wellington

Royal Air Force

Vickers Twin-engined medium bomber of geodetic construction. It was the main British bomber during the first part of WW2,

 

WHITE BOMBS

Royal Air Force

Nickname for propaganda leaflets.

 

 

Whitley

Royal Air Force

Armstrong Whitworth Twin-engined monoplane bomber. One of the first  heavy night bombers of the RAF, and the first RAF aircraft with a stressed-skin fuselage.

 

WILDE SAU

Luftwaffe

WILD BOAR. Originally single-seat fighters, not equipped with radar, operating during the night. They found their target against the bright background of burning cities.

 

WINDOW

Royal Air Force

Strips of aluminium foil dropped to confuse the German ground radars. First used 24/25 July 1943.

 

 

WT

 

Wireless Transmission.

 

WÜRZBURG

Luftwaffe

Short range radar capable of giving both height and range. Used for gun and searchlight control.

 

WÜRZBURG REISEN

Luftwaffe

Würzburg Giant radar used for fighter control in the Himmelbett system.

 

WÜRZBURG REISEN

Luftwaffe

Two radars in use giving position of fighter and the target to the ground controller.

X-GERÄT

Luftwaffe

Radio beams used to guide bombers to the target. An approach beam and three cross beams guided the pilot and navigator to the bomb release point.

 

Y-GERÄT

 

Luftwaffe

Radio beam used to guide their bombers to the target using a single beam.

 

Y-SERVICE

Royal Air Force

Organisation for the interception and reporting of enemy wireless "chatter" for intelligence purposes.

 

ZAHME SAU

Luftwaffe

TAME BOAR. Ground controlled  night-fighter system using a broadcast commentary on the developing raid.

 

ZERSTÖRER GESHWADER

Luftwaffe

DESTROYER WINGS. Wings composed of Bf110 heavy fighters.

 

 

  For errors and omissions please contact

Tony Saint.

ynot99@aol.com