Air Power Park
This is a US Army MGM-5 Corporal missile. It was the first US guided weapon to carry a nuclear warhead. It was deployed to Europe during the cold war. This missile was known to be unreliable and inaccurate. It also has a complex and dangerous process to prepare it for launch. As a result, it is questionable if it would have been able to do its job in the event of an attack.
The PGM-19 Jupiter is a medium-range ballistic missile. The Jupiter was deployed as a land-based theater nuclear missile. It was also adapted to launch satellites. There were plans to build ballistic submarines around the Jupiter, but the US Navy selected the Polaris missile instead.
The UGM-27 Polaris is a submarine launched ballistic nuclear missile. They were selected over the Jupiter due to its solid fuel motor, which was much easier to handle. First tested in 1960, they were active until the early 1980s, and were also used by the British Royal Navy.
The Little Joe rocket consists of a cluster of 4 solid fuel motors. It was developed as an inexpensive way to fly a number of test flights during the Mercury program without using the much more expensive Atlas and Redstone boosters. This rocket is displayed with a boilerplate Mercury space craft and escape tower.
This is one of three Nike Missiles on display at Air Power Park. This is the upper stage interceptor. The Nike project started in 1944 after the appearance of jet aircraft. Guns on existing fighters were largely ineffective against jets, so a need was seen for a surface to air missile capable of bringing down a jet aircraft.
The photo above is a Nike Ajax surface to air missile, while the photo below is a Nike Hercules. The difference is the first stage booster. The Ajax has a single rocket motor, while the Hercules has four rocket motors in a cluster. Also, the Nike Hercules features a larger interceptor stage that can fly at Mach 3.65 and can carry a nuclear warhead.
Authored by John A. Weeks III, Copyright © 1996—2016, all rights reserved.
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