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Author Topic: Shuttle  (Read 3054 times)

Bunkerbarge

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Shuttle
« on: February 07, 2008, 08:58:48 pm »

Just for your interest a couple of shots of this afternoons space shuttle launch.

A bit far away this time unfortunately so the first couple not very clear due to a bit of camera shake but a bit better when I zoom back.
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2008, 08:59:51 pm »

So how far away were you?
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Bunkerbarge

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2008, 09:04:27 pm »

Somewhere in the region of 10-15 miles.
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Stavros

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2008, 10:10:43 pm »

You on Holiday then lucky so and so O0


stavros
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banjo

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2008, 10:21:57 pm »

Quote "Somewhere in the region of 10-15 miles."

Thats the MPI (Mean Point of Impact) of most American shells.  Your lucky you still got your kit!

 ;D
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bigfella

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2008, 10:33:58 pm »

What are you talking about "Camera shake" the camera does not shake on its own. ;D ;D ;D

I have always thought that all that energy to launch one of those things straight up could be avoided if it were to take off at an angle and slowly exit earths atmosphere. But then again if it were so then it would have been done, So what do I know. Fantastic shots Bunkerbarge. It must be a real buzz to watch.

Regards David
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2008, 10:38:34 pm »

How does one shuttle launch equate to the emissions of cars in the UK I wonder?

Must have been quite a sight though!
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tolnedra

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2008, 10:44:47 pm »

Don't ask embarrassing questions, Colin! Besides, our government (?) cannot charge any taxes on Shuttle flights from the good old US of A!
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toesupwa

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2008, 11:03:36 pm »

Bloody expensive firework that is...  O0
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Ghost in the shell

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2008, 11:12:18 pm »

and one that again had chunks of foam fall off the tank
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Bunkerbarge

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2008, 12:13:23 am »

That's now the fourth one I've seen go off, that last one being the one that didn't come back.  Well it did but not in one piece.

Apparently though the ones to watch are the ones that go off at night so I'd really like to see one of them.

The first one I saw was so clear that you could quite easily see the boosters fall away with the naked eye.
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Ghost in the shell

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2008, 12:38:06 am »

How does one shuttle launch equate to the emissions of cars in the UK I wonder?

Must have been quite a sight though!
actually colin, the srb's use an oxidizer, amonium perclorate and another chemical, that when burns is actually clean, the smoke you see blasting out from under the shuttle cradle at launch is actually steam, as there is an acoustic dampening system that uses several million gallons of water to absorb the shockwaves. the main engines of the shuttle orbiter itself are fueled by H2 and Liquid O2, the emmitions being thrust, heat and water!  the shuttle is probably less polluting than a golf buggy
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2008, 08:44:22 am »

Learn something new every day! Mind you, with the weather we've been having lately, I reckon that my car has been leaving more of a trail of water than anything else!
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Martin [Admin]

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2008, 09:05:48 am »


Just watched the launch on the BBC website : - Space shuttle Atlantis launch   

That is one impressive firework!
Listen to the speed and distance numbers increase by the second....  :o


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dreadnought72

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #14 on: February 08, 2008, 10:10:19 am »

I have always thought that all that energy to launch one of those things straight up could be avoided if it were to take off at an angle and slowly exit earths atmosphere. But then again if it were so then it would have been done, So what do I know.
David - here's the rocket science...

There's a thing called gravity drag which relates to the efficiency of rockets operating in a gravitational field. You can see that a rocket which only generates 1.01G of thrust is going to be very inefficient in a 1G field...it'll take a long time to get anywhere. That "long time" equals burnt fuel, big tanks, more mass. The shuttle generates around 3G with its boosters lit, and it goes straight up, at first, in order to minimise the time spent under gravity drag, as well as reduce the time spent in the thicker air of the lower atmosphere.

But of all the energy required to enter a low Earth orbit, 94% is spent accelerating to the right speed, and only 6% is spent on getting up to the right altitude. (This is why Richard Branson is offering suborbital high flights - it's far easier to achieve than orbit.) Clearly most of the shuttle's eight-minutes-to-orbit is spent accelerating to orbital speed, around Mach-24. The drag resulting from this sort of speed is huge in the lower atmosphere, so most of this acceleration takes place in the near vacuum above 50km (after the boosters have dropped off).

Flying gently into orbit, as you propose, will be a valid (and more saner) choice once engine developers crack what are known as scramjets - air-breathing engines that can operate from around Mach-3 to Mach~20ish. Once that's done, a lifting body would be able to fly to the edge of space, carrying just fuel and not - like current rockets - requiring an oxidiser tank as well. They'll still need a small rocket to work in the vacuum of space, but the risks of "flight" over "brute force", such as we see in the shuttle, will be reduced.

Regards,

Andy
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bigfella

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #15 on: February 08, 2008, 10:19:35 am »

Thanks for that Andy, I knew there was a reason. But you see what I was getting at, it must be a brave thing to strap yourself to what is basically a big bomb. Bring on Star Trek technology with Warp Speed. Now where did I put those Dilithium crystals.

Regards David
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elmo

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #16 on: February 08, 2008, 10:37:12 am »

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Bunkerbarge

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #17 on: February 08, 2008, 12:50:52 pm »

I think as far as the accelleration goes it is unbeleivably impressive to see it from 15 miles away and actually see the acceleration of the whole trajectory.  To go from launch to out of sight is certainly less than a couple of minutes and the distance it travels between camera shots is staggering.

Then as it becomes the slightest of specks in the sky the gentle rumble of the rocket motors tumbles across the water.  From 15 miles away!!!! :o

I'll root out the shots I took of the first one later which are actually much better than yesterdays.
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dreadnought72

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #18 on: February 08, 2008, 02:28:20 pm »

Then as it becomes the slightest of specks in the sky the gentle rumble of the rocket motors tumbles across the water.  From 15 miles away!!!! :o
My Dad was employed at Spadeadam Moss in Cumbria, back in the early/mid 60's, on Britain's Blue Streak programme - and I have vague memories of Primary School lessons being interrupted by noise during engine testing, seven or so miles away. (We should never have cancelled it. And the TSR2, for that matter.)
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chingdevil

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #19 on: February 08, 2008, 05:35:38 pm »

I am hoping to see a shuttle launch when i am on holiday Florida this year, the last twice I have been to Florida either the shuttle failed or they changed the date due to a problem during countdown. Who knows third time lucky, we will not have many more opportunities to see it launch as it is due for retirement in 2010, so NASA are getting them up real quick so they can finish the ISS.

Brian
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Bunkerbarge

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #20 on: February 08, 2008, 06:03:21 pm »

Unfortunately Brian they are so sensitive nowadays about conditions at the launch that it rarely goes off when originally scheduled.

Nowadays they won't even launch if there is above a certain percentage chance of adverse weather at the emergency landing site, never mind where they are taking off.

There is also an exclusion zone out at sea where potentially the boosters may land and if any boat enters that zone approaching the launch time they will call it off as well.

I've worked out here now for approximately 7-8 months of every year for the past 9 years and I have only seen four so the chances are quite slim.  I hope you get to see it though because once this program has ended I'm not sure if the likes of it will be seen again for a long time.
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Bee

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #21 on: February 08, 2008, 07:12:36 pm »

However if they have offset their huge carbon footprint with trees then they will have enough timber to build a ladder up to the moon instead.  ;)
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Faraday's Cage

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #22 on: February 08, 2008, 09:38:05 pm »

I was lucky enough to witness a shuttle launch from Kennedy some years ago. It was one of those jaw dropping moments in life.  :o

It should have launched before my holiday started but was delayed due to problems with a USAF missile launch which had to go up before the shuttle.  Anyhow, visited the Kennedy Space Centre and saw the launch advertised.  Got the passes required as the whole site is cordoned off during launch. We were bused out to the launch viewing area which was on a causeway quite a few miles away.

The launch scheduled for dawn went off on time. First we saw the engines fire followed about 5 secs later by the ground shaking and then we heard the roar of the engines as the shuttle headed skywards. Took quite a few photos but being so earlier in the morning just got a glare on the photos from the engines.

It was worth getting up at 1.00 am and travelling over to Kennedy.
Photo attached from Kennedy website of launch - Shows one of the SRB's heading back - (Better than mine  :'()      -  STS101
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Bunkerbarge

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #23 on: February 08, 2008, 10:47:28 pm »

Here's a couple of the first one I ever saw in March 2001.
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Bunkerbarge

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Re: Shuttle
« Reply #24 on: February 08, 2008, 10:49:17 pm »

And then I was lucky enough to see one only the month after that.
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