Talk:Technology during World War II

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Under the topic of the atomic bomb, all it says is "there wasn't one" or something like that. Could someone fix this? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Heya all! I'm gonna be working on this page for some time when I get spare time, so don't be surprised if the articles don't flow coherently - I'll tie up loose ends as soon as possible. Over the summer of 2003, I produced a 50-page dissertation essay for Cambridge University on Second World War technologi, and so I have a great deal of information to put in here! I'm trying to re-organise the page into a simpler format with specific subject headings, so I would really appreciate it if people don't fiddle with the layout yet. I'd really appreciate contributions from other users - my dissertation covered a broad spectrum, but by all means didnt include everything! I think it's very important as well that we tie in technology to the outcome of the war, and so instead of simply listing technologies, I will be relating flaws/developments in military hardware to the outcome of battles, campaigns, and the war as a whole. Bear with me, this page could take a while to complete!  :)

Rusty2005 20:32, 19 May 2005 (UTC)

I hope none I the stuff I "adjusted" was in your dissertation then. GraemeLeggett 16:30, 16 July 2005 (UTC)

Gentle query as to technological focus of Planes and Vehicles sections[edit]

The Planes and Vehicles sections seem to be a general summary of air and vehicle warfare in WW2; given how much is available elsewhere in Wikipedia a stronger focus on the technology and developments in it; not so much on tactical recount of events (eg the invasion of France, airfields overrun etc) might be better. I'm not venturing to edit those sections at the moment, just the weapons, but tying oneself more strictly to actual aircraft or vehicles, make, model, distinguishing features and innovations embodied in them, might be best for this page. justinmo

Hey there - I agree with what you're saying on technological focus, and I'm planning to both finish and expand the relevant sections as soon as my exams are over (few days now). While we're on the subject of small arms etc, could someone put in a little bit on the Bren guns used by the UK and the Soviet Degtyarev sub-machine guns? Degtyarev technology was much more suited to Eastern Front conditions and so gave Russian troops a major advantage over the Germans. Also, I had a major point to raise regarding Japanese technology - even when researching my dissertation, I found surprisingly few references to technology and its role in the Pacific theatre. If anyone can rake up something on Japanese technology (eg the "Purple Machine", Japanese equivalent of the Enigma, Japanese tanks during the Malaysia campaign of 1942, Japanese warships, etc), please incluse it!! After all, it's a world war, not just European.

There really needs to a lot more focus on civilian applications of the technology developed during the war. Things like nylon, blood plasma, manufacturing advances, etc. The weapons development was indeed profound, but please keep in mind that things that affect people everyday should get some attention in an encyclopedic article
Peter Isotalo 22:49, Jun 4, 2005 (UTC)

Experimental technology[edit]

A user added this to Bell recently:

I was hunting around the World War II categories to see if there was already an article on various experimental and speculative technologies pursued by either side, but I don't see one. If you know of one, could you point me in the right direction? Either way, there should probably be at least a brief paragraph in this article about some of these attempts that led nowhere, perhaps including oddities like the Bat bomb and the Fire balloon. Thanks! — Catherine\talk 17:17, 18 December 2005 (UTC)


I am resisting making organizational changes now, in response to Rusty2005's comment at the top.

As defined, an A bomb is a weapon and airplanes, aircraft carriers and tank destroyers arn't.

Shouldn't the Weapens section be organized by type of weapon or weapon component, rather that where it is used? David R. Ingham 21:47, 19 January 2006 (UTC)

German heavy bomber[edit]

I am glad someone took out the incorrect section that said they didn't think they needed one. There was one but it didn't work well, partly because the specification was too ambitious. It did at least sink ships with glide bombs. David R. Ingham 05:21, 23 February 2006 (UTC)

"quantum leap", agreeing with edit[edit]

My friend Chris Smith pointed out over dinner that, rather than being huge, a quantum leap is the smallest possible change. David R. Ingham 06:42, 10 March 2006 (UTC)


It is still redundant, but I think the problems are not as bad now. Organization of this article seems to be difficult. David R. Ingham 00:04, 16 September 2006 (UTC)

German bomb project.[edit]

Certainly firing their Jewish college professors was one the first things the NAZIs did that would have eventually lost them the war, if all else had gone in their favor, but I am not convinced that this is an accurate evaluation of what happened. David R. Ingham 00:23, 16 September 2006 (UTC)

A secret weapon in Italy.[edit]

Industrially limited, Italy in WWII isn`t known as a country wich developped new weapons. There are a couple of exceptions anyway: the fighter RE-2005 (1943), which was very very fast for its time, and the tank-hunter "M 43" ("Earthquake")with a 105 mm gun (only 5 exemplars were built). In 1943 the Air Force wanted a super-bomber able to cross the Atlantic: the "SM95". However the most interesting secret weapon was tested between Rome and Ostia in June 1936 and called "Ray of Death": behind the experiment there was the famous scientist Guglielmo Marconi and details are to be found in internet under "Raggio della Morte".

Contradicting Article[edit]

We start with "The best jet fighters at the end of the war easily outflew any of the leading aircraft of 1939, such as the Spitfire Mark I." and yet end the airplane section with "jet aircraft, such as the British Gloster Meteor, which flew missions but never saw combat, did not significantly distinguish themselves from top-line piston-driven aircraft". Now either they are comprehensively better or they aren't. I appreciate that a Mk1 Spit wasn't as good as a Mk9, but it was evolutionary. You couldn't argue that a Mk9 was comprehensively better than a Mk1, yet to claim that the jets were, when even Galland said they weren't, is pushing the definition of comprehensive somewhat.VonBlade 18:25, 5 July 2007 (UTC)

Causes of combat between jet and piston-engined fighters in WWII were very rear. For example, it can be mentioned that [[3]] killed German Me-262 using La-5 piston-engined fighter - slower and weaker armed. But it seems like exception (talk) 16:20, 3 January 2008 (UTC)

Soviet military technologies of World War II[edit] (talk) 16:11, 3 January 2008 (UTC) I hardly can imagine how we can talk about WWII technologies without mentioning of Soviet contribution to war technologies. First of all, attack planes Il-2 - first armoured planes, with half of hull made from 20-mm armour. Then, T-34 medium tanks - first tanks with weld-fabricated 40-mm armour. SVT-40, semi-automatic rifle that was an example for German and Belgium constructors for years.

French tanks[edit]

I think the following statement needs to be revised:

By 1939, French tanks were virtually unchanged from 1918. French and British Generals believed that a future war with Germany would be fought under very similar conditions as those of 1914–1918. Both invested in thickly-armoured, heavily-armed vehicles designed to cross shell damaged ground and trenches under fire. At the same time the British also developed faster but lightly armoured Cruiser tanks to range behind the enemy lines.

The French S-35 was widely considered one of the best tanks of the early war. It should probably state instead that tank development was, in comparison to Germany's, much less funded. Oberiko (talk) 15:03, 21 March 2008 (UTC)

I don't think it's a necessary edit. "[...]French tanks were virtually unchanged from 1918." and "French and British Generals believed that a future war with Germany would be fought under very similar conditions as those of 1914–1918." implies both nations didn't make the effort of funding projects for new tank designs. I mean, I don't think it's that ambiguous. Hayoye111 (talk) 21:08, 24 February 2011 (UTC)

It seems also untrue to state that German Tanks were as such superior to allied tanks. German Panzer forces still consisted of many light tanks in 1940, and there were a couple of superior allied designs. It was the strategy that made the German armored forces superior: Germany massed tanks, all equipped with a radio, to break french lines of defense and operate in the French hinterland. Contrary, the french split their tanks amongst infantry divisions that, when attacked by a german Panzer force, were outnumbered and quickly destroyed. I think the technological superiority of the german Panzer force can be called a myth. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:05, 26 September 2011 (UTC)

New Medicine?[edit]

Who is Jordan? a person? former Transjordania? It is not obvious what the sentence is referring to. Can anybody enlighten us? -- BpEps - t@lk 03:33, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

Hmmm. I'd assume the country, but as it's entirely unclear and seemingly an out of nowhere statement, I've edited it down to something clearer, but uncited, and removed the confusing tag. Not sure how to add a "needs source" tag though VonBlade (talk) 18:51, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

German fighter nomenclature: Bf 109 and 110, not ME 109 or 110[edit]

In the late 90s, there was much debate in the British specialized press about the correct naming of the Messerschmitt 108, 109 and 110. Matters have been largely settled with the understanding that the proper name for the fighters is Bf 109 (from the initials of Bayerische Flugzeugwerke), not Me 109. Same goes for the Bf 108 and Bf 110. The three are exceptions to the naming rule which puts Messerschmitt plane names beginning with Me.

Therefore I suggest we change the naming as it appears in the article.

And, by the way, it would have been "Me", not "ME".


The Peptobismal article says that the product was developed before World War I, while this page says it was a WWII invention. This seems to be a problem. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:00, 3 August 2009 (UTC)


The article mentions the following: "While the war stimulated many technologies, such as radio and radar development, it slowed down related yet non-critical fields such as television and radio". How can it stimulate radio technology but also slow it down at the same time? (talk) 12:03, 5 October 2009 (UTC)

Japanese war technology[edit]

The war technology of Japan seems vastly ignored here. For example, their aircraft are not described much, despite the fact that early in the war, the Zero was a devastating fighter with unmatched maneuverability but little protection. The Allies countered with heavily armored planes. I'm no expert on this, but for balance and completeness, Japan's tech ought to be covered. Cernansky (talk) 19:12, 12 May 2010 (UTC)

Technological innovation as a RESPONSE to the enemy[edit]

The overwhelming bulk of this article reads the same as peacetime technological advance. There is no sense that either technologies were or were not copied from the enemy or that new enemy weapons called for a response in weapons from this side. By categorising technologies from their physical attributes the military aspects e.g. airborne radar v U-boats is ignored Sheredot (talk) 22:53, 13 November 2010 (UTC)

Allied Technology Needs Beefing Up[edit]

I think there is a certain bias in articles like this, because of the cliché of the "secret Nazi weapons" documentary. People get a mistaken impression that Germany was more technologically advanced than Britain or the USA. Some important things missing in Allied technology are: Norden Bombsight, M-9 gun data computer, SCR-584 automatic following radar, the Magnetron tube and microwave radar, the B-29 bomber. In general, there were some big changes happening at GE and Bell Labs in modern Control Theory (Nyquist, Shannon, Hazen) motivated by automatic anti-aircraft guns. On the topic of missiles, let's not skip allied guided bombs like BAT, AZON, and GB.

More abstractly, one can argue that Systems Engineering evolved during WWII and was key to development of many complex modern weapons systems. DonPMitchell (talk) 19:55, 8 May 2015 (UTC)