In World War II, continual advancements in technology were mandatory to maintain a competitive edge over the enemy. While technological advancements were made prior to the war, other developments were a direct result of the trials and errors suffered during the war. The WWII era housed a great many changes which affected weaponry, logistical support, communications and intelligence, medicine and various industries.
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Advancement in military weaponry occurred rapidly during the Second World War, including everything from aircraft to small arms. At the beginning of WWII, little advancement had been seen since the end of WWI. However, just six short years later the face of warfare morphed significantly with the military utilizing jet aircrafts and ballistic missiles.
Tanks and Vehicles
Due to the increased mobility of troops in WWII (vs. the static front lines of WWI), tanks saw significant advancements, including increased speed, armor and firepower. The amphibious DUKW was another crucial development during the war and was utilized extensively for troop deployment and as a means to transport tanks to areas in need.
WWI Navy battleships no longer dominated the sea power. Newly designed aircraft carriers were equipped with greater range and a heavier striking power. Due to time constraints in producing new ships, older ships were being retro fitted with newly designed components.
The production of small arms changed dramatically with the introduction of stamping, riveting and welding. Semi-automatic rifles and assault rifles were also developed during this era. A number of transformations emerged throughout this time that would affect future small arms advancements. WWII small arms have continued to be a favorite among collectors of WWII weapons or weapons in general.
Aircraft development was crucial during WWII due to its increased use throughout the war – as bombers, fighters and reconnaissance. Massive bombing raids were being utilized as an alternative to static trench warfare. Air superiority was the goal of both the Allies and the Axis, each dedicating as much man/woman and machine power as possible to produce the ultimate air weapon. By the end of WWII, pilots were flying jet aircrafts. Other advancements in armament, maneuverability and radar assisted with the continual advancement of military aircraft.
No doubt WWII played a critical role in the industrialization of many of the nations around the world on which every military greatly relied. As a result, incredible advancements in technology – necessitated by the advancements of the enemy – were witnessed throughout World War II.