The AQM-60 Kingfisher, developed by the Lockheed Corporation, was a target version of the USAF’s X-7 test aircraft. The X-7’s development began in 1946 after a request from the USAF for a Mach 3 unmanned test vehicle. This unmanned test craft eventually evolved into the Kingfisher when the need arose for a target to test anti-missile systems such as the SAM-A-7/MIM-3 Nike Ajax, SAM-A-25/MIM-14 Nike Hercules, and IM-99/CIM-10.
Unfortunately for the tests the Kingfisher proved a bit too elusive, managing to evade the vast majority of the anti-missile systems and only being shot down a few times during the tests. This, coupled with political fall-out from the program, led to the eventual discontinuation of production in 1959 and the cancellation of the project in the mid 1960s.
Powerplant: 1 × Marquardt XRJ43-MA ramjet (Sustainer)
Powerplant: 2 × Thiokol XM45 (5KS50000) solid-fuel rockets, 50,000 lbf (222 kN) thrust each for 5s (Boosters)
|Max. Takeoff Weight|
|USA||Lockheed Martin||Bethesda, Maryland||http://www.lockheedmartin.com|