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Missile Aerodynamics

from the United States Air Force Technical Training Manual

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                          resource for unusual, hard-to-find,
                          out-of-print, and historic books about
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Missile Aerodynamics

from the United States Air Force Technical Training Manual AFM 52-31

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An exceptional reference resource for the "amateur" rocket experimenter and builder of model rockets.

During the 1960s and 1970, some of America's brightest and most creative rocket scientists and engineers designed and built the largest, fastest, most powerful, and most accurate rockets and missiles ever seen.  Companies like Aerojet, Rocketdyne, Hercules, Thiokol, TRW, and Sperry collaborated with the U.S. Air Force to publish an advanced training program for new missileers.  The result was the AFM 52-31 Technical Training Manual "Guided Missiles Fundamentals," first printed in July 1972. 

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AFM 52-31 is a thick, heavy, unwieldy loose-leaf 575-page volume that contains a wealth of once-secret information, drawings, and data about the most advanced rockets and missile systems of that era.  The text teaches how missiles like the Falcon, Sparrow, Sidewinder, Bomarc, Bullpup, Mace, Quail, Titan, Hound Dog, Minuteman, Shrike, Maverick, and SRAM work.  Topics range from Missile Aerodynamics (this book) through propulsion, design physics, control and guidance systems and components, trajectories, missile operations, lasers, instrumentation, and more.  For many years this was "the bible" that trained thousands of men and women who operated the Titan and Minuteman missile systems, and many once-secret design details of those huge intercontinental ballistic missiles are well-described in this important text.

[United States Air Force Technical Training Manual AFM 52-31, republished complete in two volumes, is available and described here.]
 

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Guided Missiles Fundamentals has long been out-of-print, and reprinted editions of the entire book are expensive and hard to come by.   Since the big textbook is expensive in its entirety, the Rocket Science Institute has republished the most important chapters from this huge document, offering them at a more reasonable price.

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This book is a reprint of the 41-page section about Missile AerodynamicsProvides both theory (with detailed examples) and practical information, intended for hands-on USAF missile technicians, mechanics, engineers, and scientists.
 
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Illustrated with numerous detailed tables and charts, drawings and photos, graphs and diagrams.  The book is both highly educational and a "fun read," covering these topics with detailed text, formulae, and illustrations, some of which are in better condition than others:

Summary of Contents
  • Physics of flight
  • Forces acting on a missile
  • Lift and drag
  • Bernoulli's theorum
  • Boundary layer
  • Airfoils, drag, and streamlines
  • Wingspan, amber, attitude, and stability
  • Dihedral and cathedral
  • Relationship of a model missile to full-size missile
  • Center of pressure
  • Determination of lift and drag
  • Aspect ratio and wingtip vortex
  • Aerodynamics of supersonic flight
  • Normal and oblique shock waves
  • Mach number and Reynolds number
  • Heat barrier
  • Drag reduction and lift effectiveness
  • Airflow at different speeds
  • Wing design and arrangement of airfoils
  • Aerodynamic loads and control
  • Types and configurations various airfoils
  • Tail units
  • Wing arrangements
  • Ailerons, elevators, rudders, and trim tabs
  • Variable incidence control
  • Canard structure
  • Jet vanes and jet controls
  • Stability of missiles
  • Propulsion aerodynamics
  • Ballistic missile aerodynamics
  • Airframes and airframe structures
  • Aerodynamic forces
  • Drag coefficients
  • Fundamentals of aerodynamics
  • Steady flow, nonviscous flow, small disturbance flow and Newtonian flow
  • Base and friction drag
  • Techniques for determining aerodynamic effects
  • Missile aerodynamic heating
  • Trajectory characteristics which cause loads
  • Dynamic loads and bending loads
  • Techniques for studying high-speed aerodynamics
  • Wind tunnels and wind tunnel test reports
  • Trends in construction of missiles
 

Note: Sample illustrations much smaller and at lower resolution than original!

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Full of esoteric and hard-to-find data.  Includes a 4-page summary and description of Department of Defense Guided Missiles.

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Please note that some of the illustrations are of poor quality

This is a republished edition, printed directly from a rare digital archive supplied to us by the USAF.  Not the highest quality to work from, but still a useful edition of this important and hard-to-find reference resource.  Since this is a third-generation edition, many of the photos are less than clear and sharp--but the information they convey is there.  Don't expect illustrations of the highest quality in terms of resolution, but each one has a wealth of information that you can use.  Legibility in this edition varies from "good" to "not-so-good," even though it was printed with a state-of-the-art laser printer on high-quality, acid-free paper.  41 pages, 11 x 8.5-inches, quality bound.  $19.95
 
USA (Insured Priority Mail: $4.05)
International (Priority Airmail: $9.50)
 

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Your first resource
                      for hard-to-find and historical books about
                      rockets, missiles, space travel, pyrotechnics, and
                      explosives.

The Rocket Science Institute is a non-profit scientific and educational foundation in support of "amateur" experimental rocket science, engineering, and technology.

Rocket Science Institute, Inc., P.O. Box 1253, Carmel Valley CA 93924 USA     •     e-mail: books@rocketsciencebooks.com

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Jet-Ex-Press
Nitrate-type Propellants Group

Your first
                          resource for unusual, hard-to-find,
                          out-of-print, and historic books about
                          rockets, missiles, propulsion, and space.