Missile, Air-to-Air, Falcon GAR-1

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    Missile, Air-to-Air, Falcon GAR-1

    Cylindrical with four long criuciform delta fins running down half of its length; taper rounded nose, and four much smaller cruciform vanes under nose. Cruciform control surfaces on trailing edges of fins. Semimonocoque construction. Painted orange with black nose.

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This is the Falcon, or GAR-1 (Guided Aircraft Rocket), the first of a large family of U.S. air-to-air solid-fuel guided missiles and the first guided air-to-air missile to enter operational service. GAR-1 was radar-guided. The missile had a range of up to five miles and speed of about Mach 2.8. Designed to destroy enemy bombers, it was carried on the F-89-H, F-102A, and F-106A interceptor aircraft.

Development of the Falcon began in 1947 and it became operational with the U.S. Air Force in 1956. In 1962 GAR-1 was re-designated AIM-4 (Air Interceptor Missile). Several more AIM models later appeared. NASM acquired the missile in 1958 from its developer, the Hughes Aircraft Co.