Recent content by TimothyC

  1. TimothyC

    A Sound of Thunder: The Rise of the Soviet Superbooster

    It's not just the pad, but things like the work platforms in the VAB, the Mobile service structure, and the ML/MLPs. By about 1977 the ability to launch a Saturn from LC-39 was gone.
  2. TimothyC

    A Sound of Thunder: The Rise of the Soviet Superbooster

    Lockheed Star Clipper, which matured into LS-200 as the shuttle studies continued was a 1.5STO with drop tanks. While it lost out to other concepts, Lockheed put a fair amount of effort into the studies and designs.
  3. TimothyC

    Black Gemini: Two Stories of the Secret Second Life of America's Second Capsule

    If we look at those 'partial failures' we find Gemini 8 with a stuck thruster and Gemini 9A where the intended target failed to be available for docking. The later problem is not likely to occur, given how the system is built and is operated. The former problem of a stuck thruster is also...
  4. TimothyC

    Black Gemini: Two Stories of the Secret Second Life of America's Second Capsule

    I think the Soviet program probably isn't a lot different given the differences in electronics reliability between the US and the USSR. Furthermore, the Soviets flew three stations - Salyuts 2, 3, & 5, that were from the Almaz series of modules, complete with cameras. In the late 1970s, they...
  5. TimothyC

    Black Gemini: Two Stories of the Secret Second Life of America's Second Capsule

    Gemini 13 was the uncrewed flight test in 1976. Gemini 14 was the first crewed flight of winged Gemini (and flew in the first half of 1977), and did not involve complex maneuvering, and was uneventful. Gemini 15 was the flight of John Young and Major Carter in September of 1977, with Gemini 16...
  6. TimothyC

    WI: Space Shuttle is actually very good.

    A few randomly ordered comments. People have commented on the large bay on the orbiter. One of the driving factors was that the 15 by 60 foot bay would be large enough to carry all of the expected payloads, while smaller bays (10, 12, & 14 foot diameter at 40 and 45 feet long) would not...
  7. TimothyC

    WI: Space Shuttle is actually very good.

    A very good case could be made (and has been made in various places) that the space shuttle as we got it was the result of a lot of very highly optimized decisions that were completely justifiable given the knowledge, technology, and budgetary/political constraints of the time. I strongly...
  8. TimothyC

    WI: Space Shuttle is actually very good.

    So, a few things to keep in mind. While there were 14 astronauts that died aboard the shuttles, there were over 852 'seats' flown in the program. Soyuz had four fatalities over the program, and has, even today, only flown 385 seats (of which over 100 have flown since the end of the shuttle...
  9. TimothyC

    Boldly Going: A History of an American Space Station

    Speaking as someone who is from the greater Dayton area, I truly understand the frustration. Thank you Randy. I would like to personally add my thanks to everyone who voted in the Best Spaceflight and Technology category, because while I am glad to have won it this year with e of pi, I will be...
  10. TimothyC

    Proxima: A Human Exploration of Mars

    Congress can demand all it wants, ultimate classification authority resides in, and flows down from, the Office of the President. Congress can cut the funding, but this is the early 1990s, and there are a lot of people who remember the bad old days of the Cold War, and won't let the program die...
  11. TimothyC

    LEVIATHAN Rising: An Alternative Space Age

    That was absolutely brilliant, and nailed Lazerpig. Other than that I just have no words.
  12. TimothyC

    2022 Turtledoves - Best Graphic Poll

    The poll is listed as closing at 9:41 Eastern today, is that a typo?
  13. TimothyC

    On Brazen Wings - From the Pseudo Space Race to Independence and Beyond.

    The FWCs (Fillament Wound Case) SRBs were needed to reach the payload targets for polar flights (the shuttle, even with 106% SSMEs, could not reach the 32klbm target). They add several thousand pounds of payload, and were, by 1986, included in the theoretical payload of 72.5klbm* out of the Cape...
  14. TimothyC

    On Brazen Wings - From the Pseudo Space Race to Independence and Beyond.

    You actually can't get the same burn-through on the FWC SRB at all. The FWC boosters actually withstood the pressure tests (water, under pressure) in ways that the 'production' design wasn't able to. The part of the joint that captures the section with the seals keeps the sections from...
  15. TimothyC

    2022 Turtledoves - (Closes (19/02/22) - Best Graphic Nominations and Seconds

    I second the nomination for Best Graphic: Space Station Enterprise; @nixonshead
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