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There are old, now mostly useless blueprints of old satellites, (or rockets, or pieces of software, or engineer's notes, e.t.c) but they are still closed to public. Why? Can it harm the Space Agency which manufactured them somehow?

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    $\begingroup$ Which space agency are you talking about? $\endgroup$ Dec 10, 2018 at 19:21
  • $\begingroup$ Just as an example, none of them share such a data (mostly) $\endgroup$
    – keddad
    Dec 10, 2018 at 19:42
  • $\begingroup$ Are they unwilling or just unbothering to? $\endgroup$ Dec 10, 2018 at 23:14
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    $\begingroup$ If I suspect correctly, your native language is using "ship" also for satellites (aka "spaceship"). Beware, it is a possible source of misunderstanding, on English, "ship" means only the large steel boxes swimming on the oceans of the Earth. $\endgroup$
    – peterh
    Dec 11, 2018 at 0:44
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    $\begingroup$ The program of the moon lander is available on the Github. It is in assembly for an ancient cpu. :-) $\endgroup$
    – peterh
    Dec 11, 2018 at 0:45

1 Answer 1

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  1. Rockets (even old designs) are capable of delivering a nuclear weapon anywhere on Earth. Governments don't want this technology to fall into the wrong hands.
  2. Publishing a design takes a lot of effort. The complete design for a rocket easily exceeds a million drawings and hundreds of thousands of pages of supporting documents. For an old rocket, all of that only exists on paper or microfilm, so it'd cost millions to scan it all and make the documents accessible.

To address the comments:

Lots of information is available to the public. You can buy entire books on various space projects (I've seen books on the Shuttle, the Apollo project, the Curiosity rover for example).

You won't find much if you search for "satellite blueprint" in your search engine. The word 'blueprint' has a very specific meaning: this is a copy of an engineering drawing using a contact print process on light-sensitive sheets, i.e. a copy of one drawing showing one individual part.

What you're looking for is a diagram or a cross-section. The Flight Global archive is a good source for those, e.g. I found a diagram of the Apollo-Soyuz Test project from 1975. Or enter the words 'Soyuz diagram' into your search engine and do an image search.

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    $\begingroup$ In some cases, the detailed design work belongs to the corporations that did the engineering work, not to a government space agency accountable to the citizens of a given country. Those corporations don't have any financial incentive to make those documents available, and substantial incentive to keep them secret from their competitors. $\endgroup$ Dec 11, 2018 at 0:12
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    $\begingroup$ The terms to look up for point 1 is the Missile Technology Control Regime. $\endgroup$
    – user71659
    Dec 11, 2018 at 2:10
  • $\begingroup$ Hello Hobbes, I agree that detailed designs giving dimensions, matl of construction etc. should not be shared, but conceptual cross section explaining the working in details can always be made available. Do you know any such site which provides them. In fact animated operations are the best guide. $\endgroup$
    – Niranjan
    Dec 11, 2018 at 5:51
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    $\begingroup$ @Niranjan Why would they release those? What would be the benefit? $\endgroup$ Dec 11, 2018 at 10:48
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    $\begingroup$ That's an urban legend. The drawings still exist. Some of the supporting documentation no longer exists (many of the thousands of component suppliers have gone out of business, for example). $\endgroup$
    – Hobbes
    Dec 11, 2018 at 14:15

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