Hauptsturmführer Sigmund Rascher was a doctor with the SS and, through his wife, a personal friend of Himmler. During the war he conducted several horrific human experiments at the concentration camp in Dachau.
He had prisoners put in pressure chambers, trying to simulate the change in pressure that pilots falling freely from very high altitudes would experience. He also put prisoners in icewater tanks for hours, trying to find ways of curing hypothermia. One attempt was made to rewarm the victims by throwing them in boiling water. Another through human warmth, by placing the victim between naked Romani women from the Ravensbrück concentration camp.
Rascher also experimented with blood coagulation and a compound named Polygal that would make wounds close faster. Subjects were given the compound and then shot with a pistol or had their limbs amputated to study the effects.
Rascher met his end after having tried to trick Himmler that his wife had given birth to three children even after reaching the age of 48; that he had unlocked the secrets of fertility. Himmler used this in propaganda material and when it then turned out that Rascher had simply purchased or kidnapped the babies, Himmler felt betrayed.
Rascher's punishment was to be sent to the Buchenwald concentration camp as a prisoner. He was finally moved to Dachau, were he had committed his inhuman experiments, and executed at the camp on the orders of Himmler three days before the Americans liberated it.
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