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GAM-67 Crossbow
Twuav 01 04.jpg
Type Anti-radar missile
Production history
Manufacturer Northrop
Weight 2,800 lb (1,270 kg)
Length 19 ft 1 in (5.82 m)
Height 4 ft 6 (1.37 m)

Engine Continental J69 turbojet
Wingspan 12 ft 6 in (3.81 m)
300 miles (480 km)
Flight altitude 40,000 ft (12,200 m)
Speed 675 mph (1,090 km/h)
Aircraft or RATO

The GAM-67 Crossbow was a jet-powered anti-radar missile built by Northrop's Ventura Division (successor to the Radioplane Company).


In the late 1940s, the Radioplane Company developed a set of prototypes of the Q-1 target series, which used pulsejet or small turbojet engines. Although the Q-1 series was not put into production as a target, it did evolve into the USAF RP-54D / XB-67 / XGAM-67 Crossbow anti-radar missile, which was first flown in 1956. It was also considered as a platform for reconnaissance, electronic countermeasures, and decoy roles.

The Crossbow had a cigar-shaped fuselage, straight wings, a straight twin-fin tail, and an engine inlet under the belly. It was powered by a Continental J69 turbojet, which was a French Turbomeca Marbore II engine (which powered the Fouga Magister) built in the US under license, with 4.41 kN (450 kgf/1,000 lbf) thrust. Two Crossbows could be carried by a Boeing B-50 Superfortress bomber, while four Crossbows could be carried by a Boeing B-47 Stratojet bomber.

Only 14 Crossbows were built before the program was cancelled in 1957, in favor of a more sophisticated system that ended up being cancelled in turn. However, it did point the way to the range of missions that would be performed by UAVs in later decades.


  • This article contains material that originally came from the web article Unmanned Aerial Vehicles by Greg Goebel, which exists in the Public Domain.


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