Nine-Ply Curved Spruce Rib, Nose Fairing, Poseidon C-3

This is a piece of one section of the nose fairing for the U.S. Navy's Poseidon C-3 submarine-launched ballistic missile, deployed from 1971 into the early 1990s. It is made of nine plies of Sitka spruce wood bonded together. During the missile's launch, the nose fairing and nose cap protected the reentry vehicle and its nuclear warheads housed inside from air friction temperatures approaching 1000 degrees. Explosive devices blew the nose fairing and nose cap off shortly after the missile entered space. Lockheed Missiles & Space Company made and donated this object to NASM.