Skip to comments.Video: A C-5 Galaxy Air Launches an ICBM.
Posted on 02/24/2012 5:14:32 PM PST by U-238
In the 1970s, the Air Force launched a Minuteman ICBM launched from a C-5 Galaxy. Hold on, what!?!?
That was my reaction upon learning that the above sentence is true.
In 1974, the Air Force decided that it could turn C-5 Galaxy airlifters into flying SSBNs. Yup, Air Force planners thought the missile would be tougher for the Soviets to take out with a preemptive strike if it was already aboard a moving target like a C-5 versus sitting in a stationary missile silo.
So, they loaded a Minuteman into a C-5 that parachute-dropped the 60-foot tall missile out of its aft cargo ramp over the Pacific Ocean. After the ICBM fell for a few thousand feet, its rocket motor ignited and the missile flew for ten seconds under its own power. Just to prove it could be done. Wild.
Needless to say, the crazy concept of turning C-5s into flying boomers never made it to the operational stage.
(Excerpt) Read more at defensetech.org ...
But I remember that we were in negotiations with the Russians when we did this. It really strengthened our negotiating position.
Unlike today when our statement department gives away the farm.
Pucker factor for the crew was probably high.
I agree with you
What is to stop Iran/China/Russia from doing the same thing to the US ?
I remember the test. It was the predecessor of all sorts of things: the Pegasus air launched orbital vehicle, the soon to be Stratolaunch vehicle, White Knight One and Two, and probably a lotta stuff we ain't heard about...for good reason.
Seems perfectly normal to me.
I would suppose the demo was done sans nuclear warhead. So they dropped a Minuteman — is that the heaviest thing they had dropped to date?
Iran/China/Russia don’t need to. All of them can reach the US.
Bring the GAM-87 Skybolt back from mouthballs. Just replace the guidance with GPS.
maybe we can get astronauts to the ISS that way? lol
Try a LAPSE. Nobody leaves with dry shorts.
Poland and Hungary should get some of these.
C5s are huge. I walked through one during a base open house and it was enormous. I was maybe ten so I didn’t exactly have an adult’s perspective but nevertheless, it was huge and since it was a SAC base, the B52s were off in the distance guarded by MPs so I didn’t have anything close to compare them with. As an adult, I tried to get into a B52 on static display at Travis, we got in the bomb bay but didn’t relish having the MPs escort us off the base or worse, tell my father. The point though is that the B52 although still enormous, wasn’t as big as I remembered.
If the Minuteman was capable from flying from Vandenberg to the USSR, the C5 could only add to the range and it was mobile!
The range of a Minuteman Missile is 8055 miles or 7000 nautical miles
I think perhaps the bit of trivia that best relates the dimensions of the Galaxy is the fact that the Wright brothers’ first powered flight at Kitty Hawk could have taken place within the cargo area of a C-5.
I've also heard that you could fit 6 Greyhound buses in the cargo area as well.
We have an American hating administration now. A prime example of this is when we gave away the Eastern Europe missile defense, and got nothing in return, just to repudiate the Bush administration. Dang stupid. Could have been useful in negotiations, but presented as a gift. Weak, naive administration.