Country of Origin: United States of America
Overall length, 16.5 inches; width, 4 inches
Overall, steel; internal copper exhaust nozzle; spark plug, partly ceramic
This is one of the first successfully flown JATO (Jet-Assisted-Take-Off) rockets in the U.S. and was used on an Ercoupe light aircraft in tests in 1941 at March Field, California. JATOs shortened distances for take-offs of planes. The motor was designed and made under the GALCIT Rocket Research Project (Guggenheim Aeronautical Laboratory, California Institute of Technology).
The solid propellant JATO produced 28 pounds of thrust for about 12 seconds. Six units were used in each test of the 750 pound plane. The Ercoupe tests led in 1942 to a U.S. Navy contract with GALCIT and the formation of the Aerojet Engineering Company. The JATO was donated to the Smithsonian in 1968 by the Aerojet General Corp.
Aerojet General Corp.