Mission Details for Merseburg (#117)



Number: 117
Date: 7/28/1944 12:00:00 AM
Commander: Col. H.W. Bowman
Crews Briefed: 39
Details: Synthetic oil and ammonia plants

Flying Control

Runway: 23
Engines: 0510 Thumbnail image for /Images/Takeoff/Plan23.jpg
Taxi: 0525
Take Off: 0540
E.T.R.: 1329
Notes: The Group was briefed at 0200 hours. Several problems occurred on or shortly after takeoff. The ship carrying the Group (and Division) Leader, Colonel Bowman, landed at Polebrook when an engine caught fire on takeoff. Col. Bowman and the crew were able to obtain a replacement and joined the formation. Another aircraft went off the end of the runway on takeoff, but aircraft and crew were okay. A third ship landed at 0645 with an engine feathered. All operational aircraft had returned by 13:55 hours.


Aircraft: 39
Lost Over Continent: 0
Lost Other: 0
Summary: Colonel Bowman led the Group and the First Air Division on this attack on the synthetic oil production facilities at Merseburg. Foul weather was encountered over the target, and bombing was conducted by PFF (radar). Flak was ineffective, probably because the preceding Wing had dropped a considerable amount of "chaff". However, while the 401st escaped the flak, 217 of the 652 aircraft over Merseburg received battle damage, and seven others were shot down. U.S. fighter support was excellent, and no enemy fighter aircraft appeared. Colonel Bowman's aircraft lost an engine over the target, returning to Deenethorpe on three engines.

Mission Assignments

Squadron Participants