Thursday, February 21, 2019

SM-65 Atlas

We just learned about the R-7 Rockets.

Another famous rocket in history is the SM-65 Atlas.

After the Russians had developed missiles that could go from one continent to another, the USA worked to try and do the same so they could have the same kinds of weapons.

The SM-65 Atlas was the first rocket that the US made that was an ICBM, meaning it could fly all the way to another continent.

It was made in 1959, was over 75 feet tall, and weighed over 260,000 pounds.
The rocket fuel was liquid oxygen, held in thin stainless steel tanks that were held in place by the pressure of being full of fuel like a balloon.
It used radio guidance to keep it's path, and vernier rockets to help make small steering changes.

This rocket type was used for many years, and was the one used for the Mercury space program that launched American astronauts into orbit.

(from: wikipedia - sm-65 atlas)

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