Cold War Artifacts – Radio Communication Rockets

The mention of Soviet “Command Rockets” part their Perimeter Doomsday machine in a recent article reminded me of the former missile based system I’d read about in the press:

http://www.wired.com/politics/security/magazine/17-10/mf_deadhand?currentPage=all

Our USA UHF Emergency Rocket Communications System part of our Post-Strike Survival System was designed to maintain communications after an EMP/Nuclear Event.

Some links:

http://www.fas.org/nuke/guide/usa/c3i/ercs.htm
http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=8222

Emergency Rocket Communications System (ERCS)
An additional part of the National Command Authority communication relay system was called the Emergency Rocket Communication System (ERCS). Specially designed rockets called BLUE SCOUT carried radio-transmitting payloads high above the continental United States, to relay messages to units within line-of-sight. In the event of a nuclear attack, ERCS payloads would relay preprogrammed messages giving the “go-order” to SAC units. BLUE SCOUT (sometimes called RED SPY) launch sites were located at Wisner, West Point and Tekamah, Nebraska. These locations were vital for ERCS effectiveness due to their centralized position in the US, within range of all missile complexes. Later ERCS configurations were placed on the tops of modified Minuteman-II ICBMs (LGM-30Fs) under the control of the 510th Strategic Missile Squadron located at Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri.”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGM-30_Minuteman

The basic idea appears to be to hold line-of-site radio gear in hardened protected bunkers, ready to launch & re-establish command communications once launched.

It is interesting that radio amateurs have started doing lower level rocket & balloon based communications systems.

Enjoy the links and remember to “Duck & Cover!”

73

Steve
K9ZW

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