|Publication number||US2966316 A|
|Publication date||Dec 27, 1960|
|Filing date||Jun 18, 1953|
|Priority date||Jun 18, 1953|
|Publication number||US 2966316 A, US 2966316A, US-A-2966316, US2966316 A, US2966316A|
|Inventors||William B Mclean, Newton E Ward|
|Original Assignee||William B Mclean, Newton E Ward|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (5), Referenced by (4), Classifications (8)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
DeC. 27, 1960 N. E. WARD EI'AL MISSILE Filed June 18. 1953 INVENTOR. NEWTON E. WARD WILLIAM B. MC LEAN ATTORNEYS United States Patent 0 ENIISSILE Newton E. Ward and'WilliamB. 'McLean, China Lake, Calif assignors ;to the United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Navy Filed June 18,1953, Ser No. 362,695
'4'Claims. '(Cl. 244-14) (Granted .under Title .35, US. Code (1952), see. 266) The invention described :herein may be manufactured and :used by.or.for1the=government of the United States of .America for governmental ;purposes without ;the payment of :any royaltieszthereon oritherefor.
can generally .be located. .However, when the area is illuminated by flaresto permit air attack by conventional aircraft weapons; such .as, rockets, ,guns, or bombs, the time between the dropping of the :flares and :the time that the target is attacked is long enough to permit the troops and vehicles to take cover. This, of course, greatly reduces the effectiveness of the attack on the target.
It is, therefore, an object of this invention to provide .a missile suitable forattacking surface targets which are concealed by darkness.
.It .is a "further object ,of this invention to provide a guided missile with means for illuminating a target concealed by:darkness which illuminating'means aids in guiding the missile to the target.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a weapon which illuminates a target concealed by darkness and then attacks the target before the target has time to take cover.
It is a still further object of this invention to provide a missile which can be accurately guided to a target which is concealed by darkness.
Other objects and many of the attendant advantages of this invention will be readily appreciated as the same becomes better understood by reference to the following detailed description when considered in connection with the accompanying drawings wherein:
Fig. l is a diagram illustrating the instantaneous angular and spacial relationships of a missile, its target, and the aircraft from which the missile was launched;
Fig. 2 is a partial sectional view through the nose of the missile.
In Fig. 1, remotely controlled missile is dropped from aircraft 12 and guided toward surface target 14, which is illustrated as being a tank. Missile 10 is a glider which has wings 16 and a tail, or stabilizer surfaces, 18 so that it is capable of stable flight. In the absence of control signals, missile 10 has a relatively shallow glide path and its normal flight pah is substantially a straight line. The speed of missile 10 should be somewhat greater than that of the launching aircraft 12, although this is not an essential requirement. Missile 10 is provided with suitable control surfaces such as elevons or wings 16, to permit the missile to change its flight path and has conventional means which permit it to be controlled, or guided, by radio controls 17 in response to suitable-electromagnetic signals transmitted to missile 10 from aircraft 12. The signals may be transmitted by radio or by means of wires which connect the missile with aircraft 12 for example. This latter method, however, is not illustrated. Since missile 10 is a 'war weapon, it is provided with an adequate amount of explosive together with suitable igniting means so that when the missile strikes target '14, the missileis capable of destroying 'thetarget.
In nose portion 20 of miss'ile 10, there is locatedparabolic reflector 22 and electric light bulb 24 located at the focal point of reflector 22. Transparent cover 26 gives nose 20 a substantially streamlined shape while permitting the beam of light 28 formed by reflector 22 tobe transmitted with substantially undiminished intensity. Reflector 22 and 'bulb'24, which together form a .means.
In operation after the general area of the target has been located, aircraft 12 which carries missile 10 flies toward this area and launches missile 10 from point 30. After a short time delay the searchlight is turned on and missile 10 is directed toward the'general area of target 14 by the transmission of suitable control signals to missile 10 from an observer in aircraft 12. By causing missile 10 to deviate from its normal flight path the observer can cause beam 28 to move in any direction and thus scan 'a relatively large area. When target 14 is located, the observed centers beam 28 on target 14 and holds it there by transmitting the proper signals to missile 10 until the missile collides with target 14. Controlling missile -10 from aircraft 12 is relatively simple since at long ranges where relative motion of target and missile is otherwise hard to observe, the long lever of beam 28 gives a very sensitive indication of any changes in the direction of missile 10. The location of the center of light spot 32, where beam 28 strikes the ground, shows the location of the expected impact point of missile 10 since the axis, or center, of beam 28 is substantially aligned with the normal flight path of missile 10. As the distance between missile 10 and target 14 decreases, light spot 32 narrows in diameter and the intensity of the light at spot 32 increases, so that accurate direction of the missile to target 14 is possible.
To minimize the amount of controlling necessary to guide missile 10 to target 14, the axis of light beam 28 should coincide as closely as possible with the normal flight path of the missile. As the angular difierence between the axis of beam 28 and the normal flight path of missile 10 increases, the amount of controlling of missile 10 to cause it to hit target 14 increases. The limit of the magnitude of the angular difference is determined by the control system of missile 10 and is that angle at which the control system can correct the flight path at a rate equal to the rate necessary to keep spot 32 centered on target 14. For greater angular differences between light beam 28 and the normal flight path of missile 10 the control system of the missile is unable to change the flight path at a rate suflicient to keep target 14 centered in spot 32, and the missile will not strike the target. The maximum permissible angular difference normally does not exceed 10 degrees.
If it is desired to attack a plurality of targets substantially simultaneously with a plurality of missiles,
several aircraft can each drop and control a missile. To differentiate between missiles the cover 26 of each missile can be given a different color and each missile would be controlled by radio signals of diflerent frequencies. It is, of course, possible to launch several missiles from a single aircraft carrying the proper number of observers to obtain the same result.
Because the glidance system of missile 10 is relatively simple, and because it need not have propulsion means, missile 10 can be made relatively small and light so that a single aircraft can carry a plurality of such missiles. Also the simple control system makes the missile relatively cheap and easy to manufacture.
Another advantage of this invention is that the observer need not know the precise location of missile 10 in order to guide it to target 14, all the observer needs to observe is the relative location of spot 32 relative to target 14. This makes it possible to locate the observer who controls missile 10 in an aircraft other than launching aircraft 12, if such is desired, or at any situs where spot 32 may be observed.
Obviously many modifications and variations of the present invention are possible in the light of the above teachings. It is therefore to be understood that within the scope of the appended claims the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described.
What is claimed is:
1. In a missile adapted to be controlled by electromagnetic transmission from a situs remote from said missile, and having a normal flight path that is substantially a straight line, means forming a beam of visible light, the half width of the light beam being in the range of from 1 to 3 degrees, the axis of the light beam being substantially parallel to the normal flight path, said missile operable to be directed to a target by controlling the missile by said electromagnetic transmission so that the target is illuminated by said light beam.
2. In a missile adapted to be controlled by electromagnetic transmission from an aircraft, and having a normal flight path that is substantially a straight line, means forming a beam of visible light, the half width of said light beam being in the range of from 1 to 3 degrees,
the axis of said light beam being substantially parallel to the normal flight path, said missile operable to be directed to a target by controlling the missile with electromagnetic transmission from the aircraft so that the target is illuminated by said light beam.
3. A glider missile for attacking surface targets concealed by darkness and having means for controlling the missile responsive to radio signals transmitted from a piloted aircraft, said missile having a normal flight path which is substantially a straight line, and having an electric searchlight mounted thereon, said searchlight operable to form a beam of light visible to the naked eye, the half width of which light beam is in the range of from 1 to 3 degrees, the axis of said light beam substantially coinciding with the normal flight path of the missile, said missile operable to be guided to a target by controlling said missile with radio signals transmitted from a piloted aircraft so that the target is illuminated by said searchlight.
4. A glider missile capable of being launched from an aircraft to attack a surface target and having means for controlling the missile responsive to radio control signals transmitted from a piloted aircraft, said missile being capable of flying a substantially straight path in the absence of control signals, said missile having an electrical searchlight mounted thereon, said searchlight adapted to form a beam of light, the wave length of the light of said beam being in the visible spectrum, and the half width of said light beam being in the range of from 1 to 3 degrees, the axis of said light beam substantially coinciding with the straight flight path of said missile, said missile operable to be guided to a target concealed by darkness by controlling the missile with radio signals transmitted from a piloted aircraft so that the light beam is centered on the target.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,249,274 Chandler Dec. 4, 1917 2,017,692 Gaty Oct. 15, 1935 2,424,193 Rost July 15, 1947 2,603,433 Nosker July 15, 1952 2,649,262 Fahrney Aug. 18, 1953
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|US2017692 *||Mar 9, 1935||Oct 15, 1935||Fairchild Aerial Camera Corp||Landing light for airplanes|
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|US2649262 *||Oct 24, 1945||Aug 18, 1953||Delmer S Fahrney||Apparatus for remote control bombing|
|Citing Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
|US4440366 *||Nov 3, 1981||Apr 3, 1984||Commonwealth Of Australia||Parachute control apparatus|
|US5841059 *||Apr 3, 1997||Nov 24, 1998||Luchaire Defense S.A.||Projectile with an explosive load triggered by a target-sighting device|
|US7703720||Apr 28, 2006||Apr 27, 2010||Pioneer Aerospace Corporation||Method and apparatus for parachute reefing control|
|US7871043||Feb 23, 2010||Jan 18, 2011||Pioneer Aerospace Corporation||Method for parachute reefing control|
|U.S. Classification||244/3.14, 244/1.00R, 318/480, 340/12.22, 340/13.24|