Gas Generator, Cutaway, Rocket Motor, Poseidon C-3

Display Status:

This object is on display in the Rockets & Missiles at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA.

Collection Item Summary:

This is a gas generator for a U.S. Navy Poseidon C-3 submarine launched ballistic missile. Essentially a small rocket motor, it served as the starting point in the sequential power chain for the thrust vector control (steering) system. Located next to the engine nozzle, it contained an igniter, a supply of combustible solid chemical comound that burned rapidly to produce gas pressure, and an exhaust vent through which the gas flowed into a tubular manifold that led to a turbine.

At nearly two thousand pounds pressure, the gas spun the turbine to 65,000 revolutions per minute. By way of mechanical linkages, this speed translated into a force that operated a hydraulic pump required to operate the vector control system.

Transferred to NASM from the U.S. Navy Strategic Systems Program Office in 1973.