Lockheed L-159


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28 November 2006
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In 1946 Lockheed designed a remotedly radio-controlled guided missile based on its P-80 (later F-80) Shooting Star fighter designated as the L-159.
The missile was essentialy the P-80 airframe minus the cockpit, undercarriage, and guns (in place of the guns there was a radio-control equipment). Its internal fuel tankage capacity was increased to 830 US gallons (3154 ltr) and the missile could carry two wing-tip tanks (each with 165 US gallons or 627 ltr) as its piloted predecessor. In the nose there was a 2,000-pound (907 kg)high-explosive rather than nuclear warhead. Range with such a warhead was projected to be around 3,000 miles (4,827 km) at a cruising speed of 520 mph (837 kph).
Also there was a tactical, shorter range variant of the missile. It could have carried a bigger in size a warhead that was to take place of one of the fuel tanks in the fuselage.
The L-159 was to take-off from a 300-foot (91,44 m) long ground-based launch-rail; alternatively it could have been dropped from under a wing of an aircraft. Using of the Lockheed R6O-1 Constitution as a L-159s carrier was envisaged (the plane was to carry two missiles).



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Orionblamblam said:
Ahem: Source appears to be Miller's "Skunk Works" book...

You're absolutely right. I must have forgotten to give a credit to the source. Amazing book, by the way.


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