Ranken dart

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The Ranken dart was a weapon developed during World War I for the purpose of destroying or damaging the German Zeppelins which were attacking Britain at the time. It was an air-dropped 1 lb explosive flechette-type of missile-shaped bomb which was usually carried in packs of 24; the darts could be dropped individually or all at once. Aircraft equipped with Ranken darts had to climb above their targets, before dropping them. It entered service in February 1916.[1]

Ranken darts became obsolete with the advent of the combination of explosive and incendiary ammunition fired from .303 Vickers and Lewis guns mounted on fighter aircraft.

External links[edit]

Ranken Dart in the Imperial War Museum collection[dead link]


  1. ^ London 1914-1917 - The Zeppelin Menace. Ian Castle. Osprey Puplishing, 2008.