AMERICAN BALLISTIC MISSILE TECHNOLOGY.
POLARIS MISSILE NOSE CONE EJECT ROCKET MOTOR.
Steel inert solid fuel rocket motor. 12½ inches long, 5 inches in diameter.
Provenance: Property of an institution.
Used for separating the nose cone from booster of the Polaris missile. The Polaris was a solid-fuel nuclear-armed two-stage submarine launched ballistic missile. Built during the Cold War for the United States Navy by Lockheed Martin, the Polaris had its first test launch at Cape Canaveral on January 7, 1960.
While it was not the first submarine launched nuclear missile, its use of solid-propellant propulsion was considered revolutionary, as it permitted a substantial reduction in the size of the missile. Not only was the Polaris substantially smaller and lighter than earlier ballistic missiles, it also benefited from a superior launch system, enabling the missile to be propelled to the surface from a fully submerged submarine. Prior to this, in order to launch a missile, submarines had to surface, placing them at risk of being detected. The Polaris was so successful, that it was later adopted by the British and became the pillar of its nuclear deterrent force during the 1970s and 80s.