Supply missiles

This may be a dumb question but can missiles be redesigned to supply stuff like food instead of uhhh, exploding and stuff? That way you can launch it from really far away to avoid having to airdrop the food and risk getting shot down.

You have to consider whether it will survive the landing, even if no explosives

Most obvious issues:

  • The stopping part. How do you slow it down so the food isn’t decimated on impact?
  • Foodstuffs and packaging isn’t always solid. The momentum shifts from even relativly minor loose material flying along at missile speeds will greatly affect the flightpath.

Probably not missiles but drones sure could

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Um, there needs to be energy to move an object from one place to another in this somewhat static world of ours.
Energy costs money.
In this case, it would be rocket fuel. So, add the cost of the rocket fuel to the delivery charges.
And, your business model has failed.

We send supply missiles to ISS all the time.

True. And they now recover and reuse the first couple stages of the rockets. That’s a kind of cool part of the process. They fly themselves back to a recovery ship and land on it.

I’m not sure if the ship is manned while they’re landing or if they send a crew out later. Been a while since I watched this process so my recollection is fuzzy.

I think it would still be an expensive way to deliver, say, food and other supplies to Ukraine compared to sending drones from Poland or Lithuania or Turkey.

Nothing is manned these days. And at this point, I’m not sure we could land a rocket with a bunch of food still on it.

But yes, we send astronauts to and from space with missiles, and could do the same with food.

It would be stupidly expensive, but hey maybe one day we’ll use rockets to send fresh truffles to billionaires.

Once again proving that capitalism can solve any problem.

Yes. At significant expense, feeding tens and tens of people (actually a lot fewer than that).

Now scale that up by a factor of 100,000+.


To the OP’s question:

Keep in mind the weight of the explosive of a standard missile . . . and the weight of the needed food/supply and the proportionately additional fuel needed to transport an amount to make it worthwhile.

Not to mention the need to have the payload balanced so that the missile is stable during its flight.

But a missile that size will be easily shot down well before it reaches its destination.

Stealth bomber FTW, IMO.