Experiments on human beings begin in barracks 44 and 49 to test vaccines produced by the Behring-Werke Marburg/Lahn, the Robert Koch-Institut Berlin and the Institut für Fleckfieber- und Virusforschung of the army high command in Kraków. 145 inmates are artificially infected with epidemic typhus; 5 die in the course of the experiment. Hermann Pister enters service as the new camp commandant.
The first external armaments factory detachment is established at the Gustloff-Werke in Weimar. Until a subcamp is constructed in Weimar in the autumn of 1943, the inmates go to work from the camp every day.
Within the framework of "special treatment 14f13", the SS have 384 Jewish inmates murdered in the gas chamber of the "euthanasia" killing facility in Bernburg.
By order of the Gestapo, the camp SS hang 20 Polish inmates in public at a site near Poppenhausen.
The municipal administration of Weimar has the original furniture from Friedrich Schiller's study and death room brought to Buchenwald. Over the following months, inmates make replicas of this furniture.
Gestapo offices all over Germany commit Soviet forced labourers to concentration camps, by the beginning of 1943 4,500 have been committed to Buchenwald alone. On the road to Weimar, inmates build a gun factory for the Wilhelm-Gustloff-NS-Industriestiftung of Weimar.
The Central SS Economic and Administrative Office, which oversees the concentration camps, orders the camps to supply human hair for the production of felt and textiles. In the epidemic typhus experimentation station, now housed in barrack 46, a new series of experiments on inmates begins. The camp doctor proposes reducing the reports on Soviet inmates' deaths to a minimum.
405 Jewish inmates are taken to Auschwitz. The second new Topf & Söhne incineration oven goes into operation in the crematorium, which has meanwhile been enlarged.
The first transport of 108 preventive custody inmates arrives from the Waldheim prison. In the months that follow, the judiciary turns more than 2,000 preventive custody inmates over to the SS from prisons and sanatoria.
The SS have a disinfection station and a quarantine camp (the Little Camp) built. There are 9,517 inmates in the camp. The camp death toll for 1942 is 3,049 - that is, one inmate in three.