Titan Missile Museum

Once a year, my youngest son, Jonathan, and I take a road trip from Phoenix to Tucson so that Jonathan can trade in books at the three Bookman’s stores in Tucson. There are two in the Phoenix area and one in northern Arizona in Flagstaff which we will also make trips to trade books.

This year, while in the Tucson area, we decided to visit the Titan Missile Museum south of town., Formerly known as Air Force Facility Missile Site 8 or as Titan II ICBM Site 571-7. It was one of 18 Titan missile around the Tucson area.

The Titan II was the largest operational land based nuclear missile ever used by the United States. The missile had one warhead with a yield of 9 Megatons(9,000 kilotons), which could be set for either an air-burst or a ground-burst, the latter for detonation against something like a hardened facility such as an enemy missile base.

The nuclear warhead is long gone, and the fuel has been removed.

The Atlas missile on which the nuclear payload sat is the same missile used to send the Mercury astronauts into space.

Parts of the 1996 film, Star Trek: First Contact were filmed here, which included the missile itself.

Several tours are available, ranging from 1 hour to 5 hours. An ‘Overnight Experience’ is even offered! Our time was limited, so we opted for the 1 hour tour, but we wouldn’t mind returning for the longer, more inclusive tour of the entire facility!

Oh, if you do go, be sure to watch for snakes while out and about on the surface displays!

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