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Special Projects Office

Understanding the importance of an invulnerable deterrent against nuclear attack, CNO Admiral Burke in 1955 created a Special Projects Office with the highest priority to develop a submarine-launched ballistic missile. He reasoned that adding a fleet of such submarines to the U.S. deterrent force of bombers and land-based missiles would discourage Soviet leaders from launching a nuclear attack on America.
 
 

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Virtual Walkthrough
SLBM Models

U.S. Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles

Scale models show the relative size of the six types of U.S. SLBMs (from left to right):
  1. Polaris A-1 (1960)
  2. Polaris A-2 (1962)
  3. Polaris A-3 (1964)
  4. Poseidon C-3 (1972)
  5. Trident I C-4 (1979)
  6. Trident II D-5 (1990)

Click image on right to see HD image of Models.

Learn More

Educational Videos

play videoAll Hands TV: SSBN History:  This 2009 All Hands TV looks at the history of the fleet ballistic submarine (SSBN) nuclear deterrence mission. SSBNs have been providing the US with security for many, many years.

play videoRegulus Launch: "Our Crucial Deterrent" (1973):  The launch of a Regulus missile is shown in this clip from the 1973 U.S. Navy film "Our Crucial Deterrent". Source: Naval History and Heritage Command, Photographic Section, UM-23.

play videoPolaris Launch: "Our Crucial Deterrent" (1973):  The launch of a Polaris A1 submarine launched ballistic missile from the nuclear submarine USS Ethan Allen, and the ensuing nuclear detonation of its warhead, are shown in this clip from the 1973 U.S. Navy film "Our Crucial Deterrent". Source: Naval History and Heritage Command, Photographic Section, UM-23.

play videoPoseidon Launch: "Our Crucial Deterrent" (1973):  The 1972 launch of a Poseidon submarine launched ballistic missile is shown in this clip from the 1973 U.S. Navy film "Our Crucial Deterrent". Source: Naval History and Heritage Command, Photographic Section, UM-23.

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