web series, television programming, archived and never-before-seen talks and panels, 360-degree virtual reality content, and more entirely for free during the …

What are some German inventions and innovations that occurred during WWII?


It was the ONLY machine gun to supersede the MG-34. The MG-34 was the first ever GPMG (General Purpose Machine Gun), and was the greatest MG until the MG-42 was built.

Its rate of fire earned nicknames such as the The Ripper, Hitler’s Buzzsaw, and The Zipper. It fired 1,200 to 1,500 rounds per minute. Some versions fired up to 1,800 rounds per minute. This weapon invented modern machine guns.

The US tried making its own MG-42

T-24 (It failed)

Modern day Germany uses an MG3, which is almost the same except it fires 7.62 mm and has a significantly slower rate of fire.

MG3 (Its like a Disney version to a horror film)

The modern US machine gun, M240B is built off of the MG-42. It is undeniable that this invention made way for future machine guns all over the world.


The Germans built this beauty in WWII. It is now known as the grandfather of all assault rifles. The first modern assault rifle. Of course, Germany implemented this sexy thing a little too late in the war. And it had to be in secret, as Hitler didn’t want it to be produced.

It literally made way for the AK-47.

And pretty much every modern assault rifle we have today.

V2 Rocket

The Germans built a rocket. Of course, Hitler wanted to use it on civilian targets. What a dummy… Anyway, this invention shaped American technology to bring 2 men to the moon in 1969. In 1946, the V2 rocket was the first man made object to reach space.

It took this photo of earth…

Heinkel He 178

This “jet” wasn’t necessarily built during WWII. It was built before it. However, this was the first plane to fly using a jet engine. This miniature looking plane is the reason we have all those jets in every modern Air Force. It all started on this aircraft.

Pilot Ejection Seat

Speaking of modern jets, the Germans developed the first pilot ejection seat. It was produced on the He 219 night fighter. Obviously, this is used by most modern jets today in almost every modernized country.

Fritz X Bomb

During WWII, the Germans went on to built the first guided bomb. Before this, bombs had to be dropped precisely on the desired target. With this invention, the crew member inside the aircraft used a remote that controlled the fins of the bomb. As the bomb was falling, the fins would guide the bomb to the desired target.

Sperber FG 1250

The Germans built the first military night vision device. By this point, you’re questioning your existence and asking yourself if the Germans invented everything. Do you see that big circular screen on of the telescopic sight? It was a night vision device and had an effective range of up to 600 meters, needing to be plugged into an external power source. This was 1939, so technology wasn’t as great as today. However; it was the first. And the Germans mostly used this on their tanks. You know, Tigers kinda have night vision, and well, the Tiger tanks had better vision than the other tanks…

I will continue this answer if people demand it. If not, that’s all folks. And let’s remember Nazi Germany definitely shaped modern warfare…

First Airborne Assault

German paratroopers shaped the first airborne invasion during Operation Weserübung. It was during the invasion of Norway in 1940. The Luftwaffe was tasked with capturing the capital and had used paratroopers.

German paratroopers were supposed to be a secret. However; it was quickly discovered which eventually made the paratroopers useless as the enemies found better ways of ultimately preventing them. Hitler eventually banned the use of paratroopers

However; because of the paratroopers, one of the most advanced rifles was built as requested in 1941.


Probably one of the first weapons to use a straight-line recoil operating system. I won’t explain why this weapon was so advanced for its time and the unique features of this beauty, because that would LITERALLY take 10 minutes to explain. Every little piece on this weapon had a purpose.

The Luftwaffe requested this weapon for its paratroopers. A lighter and more effective replacement for the MP-40, one that has a selective firing switch and is versatile between sub machine gun and rifle ops.

This weapon was used as a rifle, battle rifle, and machine gun. In fact, when paratroopers fired this weapon, the enemy actually believed it was a machine gun. The US tried to redesign this weapon as they tried with the MG-42.

T44 (Yes, it failed as well)

However, this invention (in latter with the MG-42) helped create the US’s first decent machine gun design, the M60.

M60 (The Pig)

The FG was used by special SS troops to free Mussolini. I mean, the SS did the whole “Navy SEAL” thing before it was cool. Heh, anyway…

Luger P08

People often say the German’s Walter P38 was the best. Undoubtedly, it did pioneer modern pistol for the most part. However; the P08 had a unique design and was loved by American and French Forces. The cosmetics got their attention, but the weapon ended up being extremely precise and had the best stopping power for a 9mm. The French, and other forces, ended up using this weapon until 1970.

Lighting of the Torch Ceremony

Yes, this was made before the war. However; the 1936 Olympics were the first to be televised worldwide and were hosted in the Heart of the Reich, Berlin. This was around the time Hitler was seen as a hero and gained worldwide support. These Olympics had the very first lighting of the torch ceremony. This tradition went on to be used in every Olympics game.

Gliding Missile

The HS-293 was a radio guided missile that was equipped with a rocket engine on its belly. Nazi Germany used the first one against Great Britain in 1943. Not many of them were built, but were the first of its kind and now are one of the grandfathers of modern guided missiles.

First Computer

The Germans went on to build the first free-programmable computer BEFORE the war called the V1 (Later the Z1). Yes, I know you asked for during the war but this computer was used during the war.

It had a 64-word memory which was able to be transferred from one unit to another. Keep in mind, it was the first and did not function well. Other designs were made by the Germans but the first one was destroyed in the early 1940’s by the allies. The Z3.

Z3 (V3)

This one was built during the war in 1941, from almost the same design as the V1. However; the first one did not operate very well as compared to this one. I won’t ramble on, but this computer is the reason we have computers today. So I guess you can say, our computers were invented by Nazi Germany? Jokes, jokes. 🙂