|Directory of U.S. Military Rockets and Missiles|
|Copyright © 2002 Andreas Parsch|
In 1957, the Rheem Manufacturing Co. developed the surveillance drone for the U.S. Army's AN/USD-2 drone surveillance system. The drone itself was usually known as SD-2, but was sometimes also referred to as AN/USD-2, which was more properly the designation of the whole surveillance system, including ground equipment. Rheem's defense business was purchased in 1959 by Aerojet General, who developed a slightly improved version of the SD-2 as the Overseer drone.
The Overseer was a propeller-driven aircraft, which was launched by two solid-fueled rocket boosters from a zero-length launcher mounted on a V-260/USD truck. After completion of its mission, it was landed by a parachute recovery system. The Overseer's equipment included an AN/AAD-2 infrared sensor, and a realtime data transmission system. The SD-2 was reportedly also used to test the AN/DPD-2 side-looking radar.
|Photo: via Ordway/Wakeford|
In June 1963, the SD-2 Overseer drone was designated as MQM-58A. I have little information about the operational career of the MQM-58A, and it's possible that it never became fully operational with the U.S. Army. In any case, it was no longer used at the end of the 1960s.
Note: Data given by several sources show slight variations. Figures given below may therefore be inaccurate!
Data for MQM-58A:
|Length||4.09 m (13 ft 5 in)|
|Wingspan||3.50 m (11 ft 6 in)|
|Height||0.79 m (2 ft 7 in)|
|Weight||500 kg (1100 lb)|
|Speed||560 km/h (350 mph)|
|Propulsion||Lycoming piston engine; 165 kW (225 hp)|
 Frederick I. Ordway III, Ronald C. Wakeford: "International Missile and Spacecraft Guide", McGraw-Hill, 1960
 Norman J. Bowman: "The Handbook of Rockets and Guided Missiles", Perastadion Press, 1963
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