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@OrganicMarble's answer mentions

Because the Orbiter wings developed lift at zero angle of attack, the high dynamic pressure portion of ascent had to be flown at a negative angle of attack, close to the zero lift angle. This could have been done heads-up or down, but the early crew members expressed a preference for having a horizon view. This led to the heads-down attitude.

If lift and drag were plotted together as in the hypothetical picture below, would it show a significant increase in drag coefficient $C_D$ at a typical negative AOA used at this point in the Shuttle's ascent?

enter image description here

Source: X-plane.org

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    $\begingroup$ Finding a straightforward plot of drag coefficient versus Alpha for the mated vehicle is proving unexpectedly difficult. $\endgroup$ – Organic Marble Oct 13 '18 at 19:28
  • $\begingroup$ @OrganicMarble any progress (people have been viewing recently) $\endgroup$ – uhoh May 20 at 3:08
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    $\begingroup$ The data I have is in body coordinates, so it would have to be transferred to the wind axes to get lift and drag. Which means I'd need to do it for every point I have using that point's alpha, which means I'm not going to do it. $\endgroup$ – Organic Marble May 20 at 4:18
  • $\begingroup$ @OrganicMarble okay thanks. $\endgroup$ – uhoh May 20 at 4:31

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