The M28 "Davy Crockett" and M388 "Atomic Watermelon" Nuclear Warhead | Curiosity Trek!


A BIG boom in a tiny package! During the first two decades of the Cold War, the US Army was focused on the development of tactical nuclear weapons that could be deployed directly on the battlefield. Numerous delivery systems were introduced, from missiles to standard artillery shells, but the smallest and most portable was the M28/29 Battle Group Atomic Delivery System (BGADS) or “Davy Crockett.” This was a recoilless rifle system that could be operated by a 3-man crew and launched from the back of a Jeep or tracked vehicle, or via a tripod placed on the ground.  

The system fired the M388 nuclear projectile, also called the “atomic watermelon.” The warhead contained an explosive yield equivalent to about 20 tons of TNT. The M388 warhead is the inspiration for the "Mini Nuke" weapon found in the Fallout series of video games.

Host Andrew Davis joins Heather McPherson and Saddler Taylor of the SC Military Museum as they deliver the explosive history of this weapon system!