Near Dover in Kent County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The Minuteman is a land-based intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). First flown in 1961, over 400 will remain in service until at least 2030. It is the first solid-fuel missile to have a digital flight control computer, a combination which enables a short-notice launch.
On 24 October 1974, a C-5A Galaxy successfully conducted an Air Mobile Feasibility Test when an 86,000-pound ICBM was extracted by parachute from the aircraft flying at 20,000 feet over the Pacific Ocean. As soon as the missile stabilized, its rocket engine fired. The 10-second engine burn allowed it to climb 12,000 feet before it dropped into the ocean as planned. Although only done once, it was enough to use as a negotiating point in the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT).
The C-5A in front of you, 69-0014, on display with this missile-launching trainer, is the aircraft that was flown to conduct those tests.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Communications • Science & Medicine • War, Cold. A significant historical date for this entry is October 24, 1974.
Location. 39° 7.022′ N, 75° Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1301 Heritage Road, Dover AFB DE 19902, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. C-45G (a few steps from this marker); C-60 (a few steps from this marker); C-5A (within shouting distance of this marker); U-3A (within shouting distance of this marker); KB-50J (within shouting distance of this marker); KC-135E (within shouting distance of this marker); AN/GPN-20 Airport Surveillance Radar (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); C-121C (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Dover.
Credits. This page was last revised on September 16, 2021. It was originally submitted on November 13, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 113 times since then and 32 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on November 13, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.