Over View of Atlas F Underground Missile Silo
Over View of an Atlas F Underground Missile Silo
 
General Layout of Equipment in an Atlas F ICBM Missile Silo
 
An Atlas ICBM uses 2 propellants, RP-1 and Liquid Oxygen (LOX). The RP-1 Kerosene type fuel is aboard all time and then just prior to launch the LOX is loaded while the rocket is still in the silo protected from the outside elements. Once loaded with LOX the silo doors are rapidly thrown open using high pressure nitrogen (Gn2) gas to push the hydraulic fluid from the accumulators to the door cylinders. The rocket is then elevated at high speed to above ground level for launching. Loading of LOX and Countdown to Launch took less then 15 minutes.

The above view is an Atlas F just after a Simulated Launch Countdown has been aborted and the Oxygen Boil Off Valve has opened to Vent Pressure from the Liquid Oxygen Tank before being lowered back into the silo.

 
Area Location Map of All 12 Atlas Launch Complexes Surrounding Abilene, Texas
 
Logo of Strategic Missile Squadron # 578 - Dyess Air Force Base
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