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Vought FIRE Missile

Mark Nankivil

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Good Day All -

From the Vought Archives a missile I had not previously seen. Interesting to see the gimballing of the lower stage immediately after launch.

Any other info/leads appreciated.

Enjoy the Day! Mark
 

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TomS

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One mention here:

https://www.vought.org/peoplaces/html/ldallas61.html

Apparently a company-funded research effort done in about six months for $350,000, probably around 1962-3 (actually 1959, per the photo captions). No sign of what its goal was.
 

sferrin

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Boeing's "Fasthawk" was to use something similar.
 

sferrin

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litzj said:
I had seen nose-deflection in CKEM concept :)
Also for artillery shells.
 

Mark Nankivil

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An image of the FIRE in the Vought Low Speed Wind Tunnel. Note the different fin design on this model.

Enjoy the Day! Mark
 

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Zootycoon

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There is a Project Fire page on the Vought History web site;-

https://www.vought.org/products/html/fire.html

I guess it may have been added after the ref was made in the post of Sept 18

It was a re entry test vehicle, connected with Apollo, flew twice in 64/65.
 

TomS

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Zootycoon said:
There is a Project Fire page on the Vought History web site;-

https://www.vought.org/products/html/fire.html

I guess it may have been added after the ref was made in the post of Sept 18

It was a re entry test vehicle, connected with Apollo, flew twice in 64/65.
Yep. That's definitely not the missile shown in the pictures, but it may well be the Project FIRE from my Septemebr 2018 link above. Sorry if I led anyone astray.
 

sferrin

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lastdingo said:
sferrin said:
litzj said:
I had seen nose-deflection in CKEM concept :)
Also for artillery shells.
It's too slow for normal spin stabilization spin rates.
Maybe I'm thinking of RVs now that I think about it. I'll have to double check. I'll post the link later.
 

Mark Nankivil

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Interesting info Zootycoon - had not come across that before though I have a couple of LSWT negs of a round object being tested in the tunnel. My first thought seeing the negs was a calibration device (or a bowling ball!) but will need to see if I can find a reference with the other negs or test reports. I would think the previous reference is to this missile simply due to the photos defining the project name and the expenditure of Vought funds only.

Shades of the "Little Henry" name at McDonnell Aircraft - a number of different helicopter projects had this moniker...

Enjoy the Day! Mark
 
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TomS

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Mark, I lean toward these being two different things. The timeframes are wrong (1959 for the photos, but Apollo didn't even exist at the time), and the description of the Apollo-related reentry system (based on Atlas-D) doesn't line up with the photos.

Here's the NASA Project Fire.

https://www.wired.com/2012/07/interplanetary-reentry-tests-1966/

PS: I stumbled across this on our own forum:

V-421

1957 Battlefield missile project (project FIRE)
https://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=15652.0
 

Zootycoon

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I wonder if the earlier vehicle in the pictures is a dynamic element test of the package that was going on the Atlas. This was maybe Gov funded but then put on ice before it got properly flown. Then with Apollo coming along with its very high speed re-entry requirements, the project hardware was dusted off and delivered for little cost in record time. .. probably in the hope of getting a bigger role on the Apollo project.

The odd bent shape is what’s need to steepen a re-entry angle. A similar trick was used on the U.K. Polaris Chevline bus, although admittedly that was more about RV dispersal.
 

TomS

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I don't think that's really compatible with the description of the 1950s Project Fire as V-421, a battlefield missile program.

From the timing and the size of the vehicle shown in the pictures, V-421 feels a bit like a Little John successor.
 

Mark Nankivil

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Agree fully with you - two different and unrelated projects. My Little Henry corollary was meant to describe a similar scene at McDonnell Aircraft - unrelated projects with the same name...

Enjoy the Day! Mark
 
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