Atlas Missile Silo
Terms and Definitions
This page is where you will find an explanation of terms and definitions used in the "missile business". A quick review of these terms may help in understanding some of the text used on other pages in this web site. If you know of a term you think should be included on this page please contact us so it can be added.
BMAT - Ballistic Missile Analyst Technician - This was an enlisted person in charge of the various "electronic" systems involved with the missile, such as the logic cabinets, electrical wiring and sensors, etc.
DMCCC - Deputy Missile Combat Crew Commander - This person was an officer and second in command of the five man launch crews and was responsible for one of the two keys necessary to launch the missile.
EPPT - Electrical Power Production Technician - This was an enlisted person in charge of the on-site power production equipment, including the diesel generators.
GDA - General Dynamics/Astronautics - This was the developer and manufacturer of the Atlas rocket.
GOX - Gaseous OXygen - This was the result of LOX "boiloff". Liquid oxygen has a boiling point of -297.3 degrees Fahrenheit. In photos, it is the white vapor seen escaping from the top of the missile.
ICBM - Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile
LOX - Liquid OXygen - This was one of the two fuels used in the Atlas missile.
MCCC - Missile Combat Crew Commander - This person was in command of the five man launch crews and was responsible for one of the two keys necessary to launch the missile.
MFT - Missile Facilities Technician - This was an enlisted person in charge of the various "physical" systems involved with the missile, such as hydraulics, LOX and RP1 propellants, air conditioning equipment, etc.
MMT - Missile Maintenance Technician - This was an enlisted person that performed maintenance on the Atlas F missile.
PLX - Propellant Load eXercise - This was a test of the entire missile site to verify that all systems were working properly and that the missile could be launched if necessary. The missile would be fueled and raised to firing position. If this was successful, the fuel would then be offloaded and the missile lowered back into its "standby" position. This test was performed without a warhead or the ability to ignite the engines.
RP1 - This was a high grade kerosene and was one of the two fuels used in the Atlas missile.
RV - Re-entry Vehicle - This was the top portion of the missile where the nuclear warhead was located. It is the only part of the ICBM that actually reached the target.
SM-65 - This was the weapons system designation given to the Atlas program by the U. S. Air Force.
SMS - Strategic Missile Squadron
W38 - This is the designation of the nuclear warhead used on the Atlas missile.