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  • Night-fighting Panther

    I have a vague recollection this may have been discussed before.... Regardless, I just finished reading The Panther Tank," by Dr. Matthew Hughes & Dr. Chris Mann, and they have the following under "Night-fighting Panther":

    "During early 1944, the Germans also equipped a very small number of Panthers with a 300mm (11.8in) Uhu (Owl) infrared searchlight and an imge converter. However, these searchlights only possessed an effective range of 600m (650yds), which virtually negated the benefit of the Panther's excellent long-range 75mm gun. In mid-1944, therefore, the Germans mounted a more powerful infrared searchlight on a half-track which would deploy close to the night-fighting Panther to provide better illumination. These two vehicles served with a third one to form a combat team known as Sparrowhawk. this third vehicle was a half-track carrying a panzergrenadier squad and equipped with assault rifles due to be fitted with night-sights. The Sparrowhawk team were capable, at least, in theory, of engaging night-time targets as far away as 2500m (2750yds).

    During mid-1944, one company of the 116th Panzer Division re-equipped with night-fighting Panthers, but it is not clear if they ever saw combat. this is also true of a solitary Sparrowhawk Panther team deployed to Hungary in January 1945 for the 'Awakening of Spring' offensive intended to relieve the Budapest garrison. However, on 21 April 1945, two night-fighting Panthers with the improvised Panzer Division Clausewitz overran American anti-tank positions near the Weser-Elbe Canal, in the only confirmed combat by Sparrowhawk teams. a few more sophisticated night-fighting Panthers, known as Solution B vehicles, were converted in the last weeks of the war from old Ausf A and D Panthers. In these vehicles, unlike the Sparrowhawk versions, both commander and gunner enjoyed night-fighting capabilities. In April 1945 the Panzer Division Clausewitz received five Solution-B night-fighting Panthers, and these vehicles entered combat for their first and last time near Uelzen. Before being overrun by the Allies, these vehicles managed to destroy several examples of the new British Comet tank. It is clear that these night-fighting experiments failed to justify the time and expense devoted to them."

  • #2
    Those Comet battles, any

    more details on that?

    Cheers, interesting, any "comments" on how the Allied tank commanders thought about what they might be facing at night, if the war did'nt end shortly after this?

    Tom

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    • #3
      The old myth about Comets being destroyed by IR Panthers.
      It simply did not happen
      http://www.network54.com/Forum/47207/thread/954934532/

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      • #4
        Ya know, I seem to recall this thread being done before... ah that's right, the dude who posed as a German veteran claiming he used King Tigers with night vision against the Russians!

        http://www.armchairgeneral.com/forum...ad.php?t=53962
        "In modern war... you will die like a dog for no good reason."
        Ernest Hemingway.

        "The more I learn about people, The more I love my dog".
        Mark Twain.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Achtung baby View Post
          Ya know, I seem to recall this thread being done before... ah that's right, the dude who posed as a German veteran claiming he used King Tigers with night vision against the Russians!

          http://www.armchairgeneral.com/forum...ad.php?t=53962
          Achtung baby, see my post German armor night-fighting unit used against the Russians.

          Is this similar?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by m kenny View Post
            The old myth about Comets being destroyed by IR Panthers.
            It simply did not happen
            http://www.network54.com/Forum/47207/thread/954934532/
            Thanks, a very interesting thread on Missing-lynx!

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            • #7
              Wow wouldn't you know it, i based my whole model on this story



              Not. Actually the only account of these being used that i have heard of was on the East Front only. not 100% sure tho
              Life is what happens to you when your busy making other plans! Lennon - www.lufttiger.com

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              • #8
                Originally posted by lufttiger View Post

                Not. Actually the only account of these being used that i have heard of was on the East Front only. not 100% sure tho
                See post: German armor night-fighting unit used against the Russians

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