L 50 Macreuse, the flying torpedo

[ Would you like to see the L 50 Macreuse in Game?]
  • Yes for the german only
  • Yes for the french only
  • Yes for both nations
  • No
0 voters
[Does the choice of the MB 175 T as carrier aircraft seem appropriate to you?]
  • Yes
  • Yes, provided the radar (on the plane) is replaced by an observer (who therefore directs the torpedo with a remote control)
  • No
  • I am not interested by this torpedo
0 voters


Hello everyone, Today I continue to talk to you about French remote-controlled vehicles by presenting to you what I think is my penultimate proposal on this subject. After the BHT 38, the SE 1500 series and the Breguet 910, I have the honor to present to you the L50 Macreuse.

Note that this topic is a pasted copy of my old post on the old forum



In 1945, several allied teams travel through defeated Germany in order to recover German war technology. The French were no exception. Within their expedition, there was a group detached by the armée de l’air. Among them, Michel Decker, head of the section STA/ES (Service Technique Aéronautique / Engin Spéciaux (: Aeronautical Technical Service / Special Machinery in English) was responsible for the study and recovery of German missiles and rockets.

On his return to France, Decker established a major construction program covering all categories of missiles including air-to-ground missiles .

Obviously, Decker got his hands on several works of Blohm and Voss including those of the BV 246 which served as the basis for the Breguet 910.

But that’s not all, Decker got his hands on a German project that had probably not yet seen the light of day, the L50 torpedo.

Part I Blohm & Voss L10 and L11


To understand the rest, let’s go back in time to October 1940 in Germany. At that time a torpedo with wings and a tail and tested in a wind tunnel. This project is abandoned however in the profile of another project the Blohm & Voss L10.

This company proposed to improve the range of the LT 950 C torpedo by adding a “torpedo carrier” equipped with a wing. This torpedo carrier (a glider)was to allow the LT 950C torpedo to hover before reaching its target, allowing the carrier aircraft to drop its torpedo at a greater distance from its target.

The release was to take place as follows, the glider attached to the back of the torpedo was dropped with it at an altitude of 2500 m for a maximum range of 8500 m. The assembly was connected by the left wing to a small parachute by a 25 m cable

This parachute is triggered 3 seconds after the release.

During this time, the BV 950 (glider torpedo set) continued its course until 10m above sea level. There ,weak explosives placed on the bolts detonated and separated the torpedo from its glider. The engine of the first engaged and the torpedo continued towards its target while the second (the glider) was retained by the parachute which prevented it from following the torpedo.

This first copy of “flying torpedo” was built in 54 copies which were all used for a test campaign September 1942.

We know of two production versions of these flying torpedoes, the L10 and the L11 Friedensengel (Angel of Peace in English).

First the L10, she was designed for a propeller powered aircraft cruising at around 310 km/h, was produced at 450 copies and tested on Ar 234 , Fi 176, Fw 190 F, He 111 H et J, He 177, Ju 88 A-4, Ju 188 E, Ju 388 L-0 and Me 410 at Peenemünde and Gotenhafen-Hexengrund.

However, I have not found any trace of its use in combat.

The L 11 Schneewittchen (Snow White) was designed to be launched from the Arado at 500 km/h minimum .This required however a much higher airspeed than the L 10, so an additional braking parachute was deployed immediately after launch, to slow it down to its target approach speed

It had the same wing span as the L 10 but was shorter, at 3.43 metre. However, due to its high cost (15,000 Reichsmark each), the project was refused by the German authorities and the trials could never begin.

Despite this failure, at the beginning of 1945, the Stargard equipment factory in Pomerania offered and the L 50 torpedo carrier as a special weapon against Allied convoys in the North Sea which supplied the URSS. This one was to be distinguished from these predecessors by its delta wings and was to begin its tests in March 1946…

These engineers, however, did not suspect for a moment that it would be the French who would complete their project.

Part II, L50 Macreuse


de contents

After discovering the German plans, the French decided to create the L50 which they renamed “Macreuse”, a term which designates both a family of seabirds (Melanitta) and a piece of meat used for stews.

In 1946, the L50 Macreuse gliding torpedo was tested at the Chalais-Meudon-Onera wind tunnel.

Originally, 200 copies were ordered but only 60 of these torpedoes were built at St Tropez and launched from 1946 to 1947.

And here we come to the question of carrier aircraft and here we have not one or two but three candidates. The torpedo was tested by the Ju 88 of the 110S (which also tested the SNCASE SE 1510).

The tests were extremely disappointing. On 13 tests, only 1 was successful.

The cause it was reported that the Ju 88 was far too slow for these tests.

Indeed it was calculated that the optimal dropping speed was 700 km/h

Also the CEV (Centre d’Essais en Vol) thought of continuing the tests on our second candidate, the NC 1071 which was in preparation. Unfortunately, the project to produce the NC 1071 as a series torpedo boat was cancelled and the plane ended up being scrapped before the tests took place. This definitively put an end to the L50 Macreuse program.

But suddenly what to do with the remaining 47 copies?

This is where our latest candidate, probably the most promising because already in games, comes in: the MB 175T. One of his aircraft was responsible for dropping the remaining 47 torpedoes until 1951 so that they would serve as training targets for the Albatros’s anti-aircraft gunners (an Eagle-class destroyer).

For this, the explosive charges have been removed and the torpedoes transformed into CT (remote-controlled target)

However, it is not impossible that the MB 175 T took part in torpedo trials before. Indeed, there would have been a total of 22 tries before the remaining L50s were transformed into remote-controlled targets. But if there were only 13 tests on Ju88, this means that the French used another aircraft for the remaining 9 tests. I did not find any information on the device which made these test, but it is very likely that it is either an MB 175 T, or a JU 188 of the SET (Section special Engines Torpedoes ) whose aircraft were used to test German weapons such as the HS 293 and FX 1400.

Part III Specification


This will be short, indeed I found very little information concerning the characteristics of this torpedo.

First of all, its drop height is 2 km with a range of 15 km, which is the greatest range among all the torpedoes already mentioned. The torpedo itself is a German LT F5b torpedo on which a V1 servo motor and Delta wings have been added. These wings detach on contact with the water and release the torpedo which frees its course. The F5 torpedo was a torpedo of 450 mm with a length of 4,804 m, a total weight of 725 at 812 kg with 180 at 250 kg of Hexanite.

And here I draw your attention to two things. First, this torpedo is already in play in the German tree: it is the torpedo carried by one focke wulf premium. Secondly, the average weight of the torpedo is 750 kg, you add the 200 kg of the L10 and you get a device of 950 kg or the name of BV950 that we saw previously.

Finally, the total wingspan was of 3 m (which is surprisingly larger than the L10 and L11).

Also and once and for all, the L50 has no means of propulsion, it is a hovering bomb that uses gravity to reach its target.

Finally why add the L50 Macreuse in game?


-Great addition to accompany the French Navy

-Good argument for L10 and L11 introduction in german tech tree.

-Possibility of upgrading the MB 175 T (an excellent aircraft that I recommend to you)

-Allows you to perform surgical attacks in naval battles

-Only french flying torpedo

-Only torpedo with delta wings

-For the fun of course !!!



Blohm & Voss BV 950 - Wikipedia

Junkers JU-88 A-17/A-14 [in french]

Die Gleittorpedos L10/L11/L50 der Liftwaffe

http://www.net.bialystok.pl/~hess/r_lpk_l.50.htm l



Беспроводные мушкетеры: трофейное наследие - fonzeppelin — LiveJournal

Deb spa Fr.pdf - Google Drive

German Guided Missiles - Heinz J. Nowarra - 1993

German Guided Missiles of Heinz J NOWARRA

HE 177, 277, 274 of Manfred GRIEHL and Joachim DRESSEL Edition Airlife publishing ltd

Le Fana de l’aviation 385 edition Larivière.

Here is attached the link to other French flying bombs


+1 for France