October 17, 2004

More about the Kassam rocket

Bill S continues his excellent posts about the Palestinians home-grown weapon.

After a lot of digging, I found an excellent Kassam construction article, written by a aeronautical engineering PhD, on the website "Middle East Missile Monitor"

This article is fascinating, it bolsters the point that pretty big rockets can be built without AP [Ammonium Perchlorate, which is what hobby rocketry uses - RJ] using common steel pipe and steel stock material, along with fertilizer and sugar for the propellant.

The article states that the motors are a combination core and external burner.... with square propellant slugs constructed of 60/40 mix of potassium nitrate and sugar that slide into the steel pipe (that is one heck of a large burn area). ISP is estimated to be around 130. The motor base plate has seven steel nozzles, and is threaded into the casing before being tack welded into place. Estimated burn time is 1 second, which minimizes erosion. Warhead is a combo of urea nitrate and smuggled TNT. Fusing is a simple device based on an empty small arms cartridge filled with an explosive booster material operating against a spring-loaded nail. Article has Interesting photos of the rectangular slugs and the rear end/nozzle assembly. Since this article was written over a year ago, the total number of rockets fired has roughly doubled.

The article is "The Growing Threat of the Kassam Unguided Rockets".

If the link doesnt work, go to the web site and click on "articles".

As an aside, an article was in today's DC post [WaPo - RJ] on the Kassam, "Rockets Deliver Daily Terror to Residents of Israeli Town".

The article correctly states that these are wildly inaccurate and few have ever hit anything. There is radar alarm system for the local town that gives about a 20 second inbound warning.

Posted by Ted at October 17, 2004 05:08 AM | TrackBack
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