SMC Volunteers Build Museum of Nuclear Science and History Peacekeeper Exhibit

  • Published
  • By Alicia Garges, SMC Public Affairs
On Nov. 17, a new Peacekeeper Intercontinental Ballistic Missile exhibit was unveiled at the National Museum of Nuclear Science and History’s Heritage Park. This exhibit wouldn’t have been possible without the help of seven volunteers from the Space and Missile Systems Center Launch Enterprise Directorate’s Experimental Launch and Test Division based at Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico.

According to volunteer Claude “Wes” Eden, the museum requested people who had technical expertise on the Peacekeeper ICBM to assist with the restoration effort. The Experimental Launch and Test Division manages the Rocket Systems Launch Program which uses decommissioned Minuteman and Peacekeeper rocket motors to provide cost effective small launch services to DoD customers so the unit had the expertise to build the display.

Maj. Andrew Reed, Capt. Carl Tegtmeier, Capt. Michael Parmentier, 1st Lt. Jeremy Tysinger, 2d Lt. Derek Holsapple, Tech Sgt. Ricardo Hollingsworth, and Veronica Vigiland Eden spent the past year working on the exhibit during their off-duty time.

The team designed the layout of the exhibit and provided technical expertise to museum personnel. They reassembled the first and second stage rocket motors. This required designing and building - at little or no cost - all required support and assembly fixtures, generating work procedures for reassembly operations, and laying out the four large concrete pads comprising the exhibit. After the pads were constructed, the volunteers provided direction for the specific location of all exhibit components (Stage I, II, III, IV, RV deployment module/shroud). The volunteers also secured the component support stands to the concrete pads.

The final display consists of a SR118 first stage, SR119 second stage, SR120 third stage, Post Boost Propulsion System (liquid fueled fourth stage), deployment module (for deploying the 10 reentry vehicles) and titanium shroud (nose cone covering the deployment module).

The Heritage Park is a nine-acre outdoor exhibit area complete with planes, missiles, cannons, launchers and a nuclear sub sail. It’s part of the National Museum of Nuclear Science and History, located in Albuquerque, New Mexico.