Wednesday, February 4, 2009

This could really GO!!! So Watch the Sky

It has been a while since I posted anything and this is not a car post. Snow and ice have made me think of going to Arizona to get away from it and that is where I visited the last Titan II missile silo that has been converted to a museum. This is not so much a Sky Watch as a Watch the Sky post.
This is a display of the engines used. The big double first stage engine, the large second stage engine and the small steering engines for the war heads. I wish I knew how much HP each would generate. This is a good reminder of the "Cold War" and how close we could have been to a Hot War.

This is the concrete silo cover. It is in the retracted position. If they needed to open it for actual use explosive would have been used to move it.
The missile in the silo. Notice the hole in the side of the nose cone. Every day a Russian satellite does a fly over and takes a picture to make sure that hole is there and that there is NOT a war head inside. The old "trust but verify" still is used.

After going down an elevator a long way, and they wouldn't tell us how far, we had to go through four blast doors to get to the control room.

This is the tunnel from the control room out to the missile. The large cans along the walls are shock absorbers that can withstand anything except a direct atomic bomb blast.

Looking up out of the silo at the nose cone. they have built a glass cover to protect the missile because the cover has to be left open so the Russians can look at it each day, smile.

This is the control panel where the Presidents code would have been entered into the group of thumb switches that opened the oxidiser valve so the missile could launch.

The "safe" for the keys that turned everything on. I wouldn't have thought of a filling cabinet with a few locks on it. High tech at its best. Wonder what it cost?

The Titan II had three individually guided war heads. Here is where the targets were set. Hope they don't have my address. As an engineer I found this really interesting but thinking of what would have happened if these had been used is pretty scary.


chrome3d said...

Thanks for the trip around a place I wouldn´t normally see in any circumstance. Those locks were quite funny on the cabinet considering the use:)

Noner said...

Thats probably a multi-million dollar file cabinet there.

I played today at

Mike said...

Thanks chrome3d and Noner for stopping by. I tend to end up in the more out of the way places.

Babooshka said...

Probably the most original skywatch this week.

Grammy said...

I love your sky view shot. And the trip through the place.
Missouri, USA

rob ijbema said...

wow i bet that thing goes!!!
good thing it didn't...

ascu75 aka Don said...

Mike never seen your stuff before Have a nice time
in Arizona From Don in England XXX Don

ascu75 aka Don said...

Wheres the piccies from Arizona .....hope you had a good time XXX Don