Military missiles can be classified as shown in Table 1-6. Rocket propulsion for new U.S. missiles uses now almost exclusively solid propellant rocket motors. They can be strategic missiles, such as long-range ballistic missiles (800 to 9000 km range) which are aimed at military targets within an enemy country, or tactical missiles, which are intended to support or defend military ground forces, aircraft, or navy ships.
The term surface launch can mean a launch from the ground, the ocean surface (from a ship), or from underneath the sea (submarine launch). Some tactical missiles, such as the air-to-surface SRAM missile, have a two-pulse solid propellant motor, where two separate, insulated grains are in the same motor case; the time interval before starting the second pulse can be timed to control the flight path or speed profile. Most countries now have tactical missiles in their military inventories, and many of these countries have a capability to produce their own rocket propulsion systems that are used to propel them.
Other applications of rockets include primary engines for research airplanes, assist-take-off rockets for airplanes, ejection of crew escape capsules and stores, personnel "propulsion belts,"and propulsion for target drones, weather sounding rockets, signal rockets, decoy rockets, spin rockets, vernier rockets, underwater rockets for torpedoes and missiles, the throwing of lifelines to ships, and "Fourth of July" rockets.
Tables 1-6 and 1-7 show some parameters of rocket propulsion devices for different applications. The selection of the best rocket propulsion system type and design for any given application is a complex process involving many factors, including system performance, reliability, propulsion system size, and compatibility, as described in Chapter 17. Comparisons and evaluations of many of these criteria are discussed in this book. Many factors, such as development, production or operating costs, available technology, and service life, though beyond the scope of this book, enter strongly into such a selection.
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What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.