RIM-8 Talos

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
RIM-8 Talos
US Rim-8g missile.jpg
RIM-8G Talos missile.
Type Surface-to-air missile
Place of origin United States
Service history
In service Withdrawn from service 1980
Used by United States Navy
Production history
Manufacturer Bendix
Produced 1958
Specifications
Weight 7,800 lb (3,538 kg) (missile: 3,400 lb (1,542 kg), booster: 4,400 lb (1,996 kg)
Length 456 in (11.6 metres)
Diameter 28 in (0.7 metres)
Warhead 136 kg (300 lb) continuous-rod HE warhead or W30 nuclear warhead (2 - 5 kt)

Engine Bendix ramjet sustainer,
Stage1: MK 11 solid-fueled rocket booster,
Stage2: Bendix ramjet sustainer
Wingspan 2.80 m (110 in)
Operational
range
185 km (100 nm); RIM-8A: 92 km (50 nm)
Flight ceiling 24400 m (80,000 ft)
Speed Mach 2.5
Guidance
system
Radar beam riding and (non-nuclear variants) semi-active radar homing
Launch
platform
Surface Ship

The Bendix RIM-8 Talos was a long-range naval surface-to-air missile, and was among the earliest surface-to-air missiles to equip United States Navy ships. The Talos used radar beam riding for guidance to the vicinity of its target, and semiactive radar homing (SARH) for terminal guidance. The characteristic array of four antennas surrounding the nose are the SARH receivers which functioned as a continuous wave interferometer. Thrust was provided by a solid rocket booster for initial launch and a Bendix ramjet for flight to target with the warhead doubling as the ramjet's compressor.

Last Talos missile launched by USS Oklahoma City (CLG-5) in 1979.

History[edit]

Talos was the end product of Operation Bumblebee, the Navy's 16-year surface-to-air missile development program for protection against guided anti-ship missiles like Henschel Hs 293 glide bombs, Fritz X, and kamikaze aircraft.[1] The Talos was the primary effort behind the Bumblebee project, but was not the first missile the program developed; the RIM-2 Terrier was the first to enter service. The Talos was originally designated SAM-N-6, and was redesignated RIM-8 in 1963. The airframe structure was manufactured by McDonnell Aircraft in St. Louis; final assembly was by Bendix Missile Systems in Mishawaka, Indiana.

The Talos saw relatively limited use due to its large size and dual radar antenna system; there were few ships that could accommodate the large missiles with the AN/SPW-2 missile guidance radar and the AN/SPG-49 target illumination and tracking radar.[2] Indeed, the 11.6-meter-long, 3½-tonne missile was similar in size to a fighter aircraft.[3] The Talos Mark 7 launcher system was installed in three Galveston class cruisers (converted Cleveland class light cruisers) with 14 missiles in a ready-service magazine and up to 30 unmated missiles and boosters in a storage area above the main deck. Nuclear-powered USS Long Beach and three Albany class cruiser (converted Baltimore class heavy cruisers) carried Mark 12 launchers fed from behind by a 46-round magazine below the main deck.

The initial SAM-N-6b/RIM-8A had an effective range of about 50 nm, and a conventional warhead. The SAM-N-6bW/RIM-8B was a RIM-8A with a nuclear warhead; terminal guidance was judged unnecessary for a nuclear warhead, so the SARH antenna were omitted. The SAM-N-6b1/RIM-8C was introduced in 1960 and had nearly double the range, and a more effective conventional continuous-rod warhead. The RIM-8D was the nuclear-warhead version of the -8C. The SAM-N-6c/RIM-8E "Unified Talos" had a warhead that could be swapped while embarked, eliminating the need to waste magazine capacity carrying dedicated nuclear warhead variants. The RIM-8E also carried an improved continuous-wave terminal homing seeker, and had a higher ceiling. Some RIM-8Cs were retrofitted with the new seeker, and designated RIM-8F. The RIM-8G and RIM-8J had further radar homing improvements. The RIM-8H Talos-ARM was a dedicated anti-radar homing missile for use against shore-based radar stations. Initial testing of the RIM-8H was performed in 1965, and soon after it was deployed in Vietnam on Chicago, Oklahoma City, and Long Beach, attacking North Vietnamese SAM radars. The surface-to-air versions also saw action in Vietnam, a total of three MiGs being shot down by Chicago and Long Beach. The Talos missile also had surface-to-surface capabilities.[4]

Variants[edit]

SAM-N-6
Development and prototype missiles; pre-1962 US Navy designation of the Talos missile.
SAM-N-6a
Development and prototype missiles; pre-1962 US Navy designation of the Talos missile.
SAM-N-6b
Production missiles deployed with conventional explosive warheads; re-designated RIM-8A.
SAM-N-6bw
The -6b missile with nuclear warhead, omitting terminal guidance and SARH antennae; re-designated RIM-8B.
SAM-N-6b1
An improved -6b with much greater range and continuous rod conventional warhead; re-designated RIM-8C.
SAM-N-6c
"Unified Talos" with interchangeable nuclear / conventional warheads eliminating the need for storage of both missile types, also fitted with improved terminal homing and higher operating ceiling; re-designated RIM-8E.
RIM-8A Talos
Production missiles deployed with conventional explosive warheads; re-designated from SAM-N-6b.
RIM-8B Talos
The RIM-8A missile with nuclear warhead, omitting terminal guidance and SARH antennae; re-designated from SAM-N-6bw.
RIM-8C Talos
An improved RIM-8A with much greater range and continuous rod conventional warhead; re-designated from SAM-N-6b1.
RIM-8D Talos
The RIM-8C with nuclear warhead.
RIM-8E Talos
"Unified Talos" with interchangeable nuclear / conventional warheads eliminating the need for storage of both missile types, also fitted with improved terminal homing and higher operating ceiling; re-designated from SAM-N-6c.
RIM-8F Talos
Some RIM-8C missiles retro-fitted with the new seeker from the RIM-8E.
RIM-8G Talos
Variant with further homing improvements.
RIM-8H Talos-ARM
A dedicated surface-to-surface anti-radar homing version for deployment on ships already fitted out for the Talos SAM.
RIM-8J Talos
Variant with further homing improvements.
MQM-8G Vandal
Talos missiles remaining after removal from active service were converted to super-sonic drone targets, with the inventory being exhausted circa 2008.

Chronology[edit]

Date Fleet inventory Ship Event
28 May 1958 1xMk 7 launcher with 2xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Galveston commissioned as CLG-3
3 June 1960 2xMk 7 launchers with 4xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Little Rock commissioned as CLG-4
7 September 1960 3xMk 7 launchers with 6xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Oklahoma City commissioned as CLG-5
9 September 1961 3xMk 7 & 1xMk 12 launchers with 8xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Long Beach commissioned as CGN-9
3 November 1962 3xMk 7 & 3xMk 12 launchers with 12xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Albany commissioned as CG-10
1 December 1962[5] 3xMk 7 & 5xMk 12 launchers with 16xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Columbus commissioned as CG-12
2 May 1964 3xMk 7 & 7xMk 12 launchers with 20xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Chicago commissioned as CG-11
25 May 1970[6] 2xMk 7 & 7xMk 12 launchers with 18xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Galveston decommissioned
31 January 1975[5] 2xMk 7 & 5xMk 12 launchers with 14xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Columbus decommissioned
22 November 1976[7] 1xMk 7 & 5xMk 12 launchers with 12xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Little Rock decommissioned
1978 1xMk 7 & 4xMk 12 launchers with 10xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Long Beach Talos system removed
1 November 1979 4xMk 12 launchers with 8xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Oklahoma City Last Talos fired
15 December 1979 4xMk 12 launchers with 8xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Oklahoma City decommissioned
1 March 1980 2xMk 12 launchers with 4xAN/SPG-49 RADAR Chicago decommissioned
29 August 1980 Albany decommissioned

Fate[edit]

Talos was phased out of fleet service in 1976, though the ships carrying the system soldiered on a few more years with the launchers left in place until they (Albany-class, and Oklahoma City) were retired in 1980, after Long Beach had her Talos launcher removed in 1978. After 22 years of fleet service, the missile was replaced by the RIM-67 Standard missile, which was fired from the smaller Mk10 launcher.

A Talos missile is displayed in the atrium of the South Bend Regional Airport (historically known as Bendix Field).

Another example can be seen at the Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum, located at Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.

Gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "A Brief History of White Sands Proving Ground 1941-1965". New Mexico State University. Retrieved 2010-08-19. 
  2. ^ Polmar, Norman (December 1978). The U.S.Navy: Shipboard Radars. United States Naval Institute Proceedings. 
  3. ^ The contemporary Soviet MiG-15 jet fighter was 10.1 meters long and weighted 5 tonnes.
  4. ^ "USS Oklahoma City - Talos Missile Firing Operations". Retrieved 2014-05-23. 
  5. ^ a b "Welcome Aboard". USS Columbus Veterans Association. Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  6. ^ "Chronology - U.S.S. Galveston CL-93 / CLG-3". USS Galveston Shipmates Association. Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  7. ^ "A Brief History of the USS Little Rock". USS Little Rock Association. Retrieved 2010-08-27. 

References[edit]

  • Friedman, Norman (1982). "The "3 T" Programme". Warship (London: Conway Maritime Press) VI (22–3): 158–166, 181–185. ISBN 0-87021-981-2. 

External links[edit]