Heinkel He 162

...Secret Projects of the Luftwaffe 1, from Tempest Books

Title: Heinkel He 162
Author: Dan Sharp
Publisher: Tempest Books
ISBN: 978-1-911658-24-5

A new 167-page soft-cover book in their Secret Projects of the Luftwaffe series, the Volksjager, the Heinkel He 162 is the subject from author Dan Sharp. Best known I think for the incredibly fast development time from initial design to production, and a few surviving examples on display in museums, there is of course a lot more to the story.
After an Introduction which sets out the background, the story is then split across 4 more chapters. These cover the Heinkel P1073: the Volksjager Competition: the Production Model: and finally, Planned Future Developments. The whole story is fascinating, from an initial plan to develop an advanced new jet fighter, it changed into the simpler Volksjager. There is a great explanation of the various design options that were on the drawing board, before it became the simpler and cheaper single engined Volksjager. All the variations of design along the way are nicely explained, without being over complex, so even I could understand it. There was competition between the different aircraft designers and manufacturers as well as influences from the German Air Ministry. The problems with the new design came when the first prototypes had fatal crashes, but they were quite quickly resolved. The final chapter shows us even more changes that were considered for the future, but the war ended and overtook their development.
The book is well illustrated using original source plans and documents, and reports put together thanks to questioning of captured German personnel. Plenty of photos of the He 162 production model and a number of pages with lovely colour profiles. More detail at the end in no less than 8 appendices plus the endnotes listing the original source documents. A fascinating book for the aviation historian, and perhaps those engineers interested in aircraft design.
Thanks to Tempest Books for our review copy.

Robin