Questions tagged [landing]

Questions regarding the specific part of flights, during which a spacecraft touches down on the solid ground of a celestial body.

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18
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1answer
1k views

Did any of the Space Shuttles land through rain or rainclouds?

My web research resulted in figuring out that launching Space Shuttles in rain, apart from lightning, wind and turbulence related problems, wasn't permitted due to: brittleness of the heat shield ...
4
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1answer
128 views

Single Engine versus Multiple Engines for Moon Landing

Does it really make any huge difference in the amount of lunar dust disturbed or raised during a Moon landing while using a single-engine compared to using multiple engines? I do not think there ...
6
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1answer
299 views

Is Engine thrust noticeably increased near the ground

I know next to nothing about Rocketry and Space Flight. I assume that the majority of the force generated by a rocket's engine is simply the result of throwing gasses out of the bottom very fast, and ...
2
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3answers
518 views

Why are these Soyuz Astronauts/Cosmonauts wearing sun glasses and a blanket after landing?

Why are these Soyuz Astronauts/Cosmonauts wearing sunglasses? Is there any scientific reason for this? (Please don't say they want to look cool) I have not seen Shuttle Astronauts wearing sunglasses ...
7
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4answers
463 views

Why don't we use sound suppression system when rocket lands propulsively?

We know that the sound suppression system (water deluge system) is used to protect the launch vehicle from the acoustic energy produced by the engines. For most of the expendable launch vehicles, it ...
1
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1answer
381 views

Why doesn't SpaceX deploy some module to cover whole fairing like a rain coat just before sea landing? [duplicate]

In order to avoid fairing to get wet in water, why can't SpaceX just deploy something such that when fairings separate from the Falcon 9 then from inside some raincoat type waterproofing to just cover ...
5
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0answers
245 views

Why will Russia start arming cosmonauts again?

The Phys.org article Russia to give cosmonauts guns to fend off animals on landing says: Cosmonauts have been unarmed for more than a decade but Roscosmos agency head Dmitry Rogozin said it was time ...
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8answers
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Is there any way to land a rover on the Moon without using any thrusters?

Is there any way to land a rover on the moon without using any thruster, with the help of Thermocol, Cotton, Bubble wrap or any other packaging material, like we can receive from online shop?
3
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0answers
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Can we use magnetic devices to anchor to asteroids?

One of the challenges about missions to asteroids is staying attached to them when you land. Many asteroids are described as nickel/iron, and we know that both nickel and iron have magnetic ...
2
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1answer
114 views

What measures were taken to clear wildlife from the Shuttle Landing Facility?

What was done to prevent or remove wildlife such as alligators and birds from the runway at Kennedy Space Center, so the Shuttle could land safely?
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2answers
87 views

Why a rover bumps after landing on Mars?

Sometime ago I was watching a video which showed that when a rover lands on mars surface it will keep bumping on mars surface like a ball until it gets rid of stored energy and then it becomes static. ...
3
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0answers
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Delta-v cost of longitudinal plane change correction?

In a recent question, the slow drift of a landing site on a rotating body relative to an orbiter came up. This would sometimes require a plane change correction when one desires to recover the ...
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7answers
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What technological breakthroughs were required to land booster stages?

It is only recently that SpaceX developed first stages that can land again, and be reused. The (until recent) non-existent landing of re-useable rockets is presumably, partially, due to a lack of ...
32
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5answers
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Why were contact sensors put on three of the Lunar Module's four legs? Did they ever bend and stick out sideways?

In the video Brian Eno on Apollo starting at 08:37 there is Apollo-era movie footage of a lunar module taken from the command module as it prepares for descent ...
21
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2answers
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How far off did Apollo 11 land?

Armstrong wasn't able to land exactly in the designated landing location, as far as I know it was too rocky. So he had to fly a bit farther to find a suitable spot. But how much farther from the ...
11
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2answers
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How to get processed asteroid metals back to Earth in a safe manner

How would you get precious metals (like platinum, lithium, uranium, etc) from an asteroid safely back to Earth? First, assume we don't need the metals in space for in-space manufacturing. Second, ...
3
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0answers
81 views

How do you calculate burns needed to land?

Assume I was landing a rocket and wanted to do calculations on how to correctly land. How do you determine at what time you fire the engine and at what power to successfully land on a predetermined ...
3
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1answer
371 views

When did soviet capsules begin using retropropulsion immediately before landing?

Wikipedia's Yuri Gagarin says: At about 23,000 feet (7,000 m), Gagarin ejected from the descending capsule as planned and landed using a parachute. and the section Vostok_programme; Vostok 3KA ...
5
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1answer
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How exactly were solid-fuel rockets added to the parachute lines of the Voskhod capsule?

This answer notes that Voskhod: ...added a small solid-fuel rocket to the parachute lines. It fired as the descent module neared touchdown, providing a softer landing. How exactly did they safely ...
5
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2answers
351 views

Could Falcon 9 take off without launchpad

As far as I'm currently aware, the Falcon 9 block 5 does not have the capability to retract it's landing legs once they're deployed, however: If F9 landing legs had the ability to retract themselves (...
5
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1answer
455 views

Would it make sense for SpaceX to launch from Boca Chica and land in Florida (or somewhere else)?

So I remember reading that there's a 15% performance penalty to landing Falcon 9's first stage on the barge, and 30% penalty for RTLS (Return to Launch Site). But of course it would be very ...
28
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1answer
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Why the soot pattern on the nosecone of Falcon Heavy side booster?

When a SpaceX booster is landed, we are used to seeing soot deposited all over it, usually in a specific pattern. You can read more about that in this question: Why the strange bands of soot of the ...
6
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0answers
158 views

How does New Shepard Crew Capsule sense proximity to trigger retropropulsion just before impact?

How does the New Shepard Crew Capsule sense proximity to the ground in order to trigger retropropulsion just before impact? GIFs from Blue Origin NS-10: New Shepard launch & landing, 23 January ...
4
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1answer
482 views

SpaxeX employees on the droneship when the booster lands?

SpaceX is doing a great job in recovering the boosters from its rockets. The Falcon Heavy has 3 boosters. 2 of which land at Cape Canaveral and 1 on a drone ship somewhere in the ocean. Are there ...
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1answer
229 views

Could a Rotary Rocket charge a super capacitor while descending on Mars?

Could a rotary rocket entering the atmosphere collect enough energy in a super capacitor through the rotors (along with auto rotation) while descending to have a controlled landing in the last few ...
13
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1answer
2k views

Why did the Falcon Heavy center core fall off the ASDS OCISLY barge?

On the second flight of the Falcon Heavy, they successfully landed the side cores at LZ-1 and LZ-2, and the center core downrange on the ASDS Of Course I Still Love You. Reports have come in that ...
3
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0answers
92 views

What is the physics behind a rocket landing on a celestial body with an atmosphere?

I would like to know the different physics concept I would need to land a rocket being in orbit. I know the timing is important to leave it, how can one find this out ? Then how to compute the ...
24
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4answers
4k views

How does the Falcon 9 know where the landing barge/pad is?

The descending Falcon 9 has got to hit (preferably gently) the tiny target of the Autonomous Spaceport Drone Ship (ASDS) in the middle of the ocean. How does the Falcon 9 know where the ASDS is? ...
3
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0answers
373 views

Falcon 9 Landing Speed

I wanted to know what the fastest speed is that a Falcon 9 can land at and thus the max force the landing legs can withstand. I assumed the mass when landed is 26,000 kg (I once heard that somewhere). ...
17
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3answers
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Why does this boat have a landing pad? (SpaceX's GO Searcher) Any plans for propulsive capsule landings?

The BBC News article SpaceX Dragon demo capsule set to return to Earth talks about the return of the first Crew Dragon capsule to Earth: Four parachutes should bring it into soft contact with water ...
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3answers
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Can the SpaceX Dragon 2 crew vehicle still use the draco and super draco thrusters to slow down when landing?

In an emergency, is it possible to use the draco and super draco thrusters alone to slow down the vehicle after re-entry? Right from the point parachutes are supposed to be released right upto touch ...
6
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2answers
255 views

Is there a practical maximum size for a space capsule returning to Earth?

Assuming I need to get a large cargo or a lot of people safely to Earth's surface in one go in a single-use capsule of the Apollo CM / Soyuz descent type but larger, and assuming that the capsule is ...
5
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1answer
560 views

Could the Orion or Apollo command module safely land on land in an emergency due to a navigation error?

So we all know that the Apollo missions used a water landing, as will Orion, while the Soyuz lands on land but can land on water if needed. What would have happened if an Apollo crew began reentry in ...
4
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1answer
157 views

What systems were used onboard Buran to determine its position during reentry and landing?

Since Buran has managed to return without crew on board, I assume computers had to know its position relatively accurately as it approached the runway for landing. How was this achieved?
17
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4answers
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If the Space Shuttle missed its landing approach, what could have been done?

As I understand it, the Space Shuttle was essentially a glider when it was coming back to land, and the engines were not there to facilitate powered flight. So what was the procedure, had the Space ...
1
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1answer
183 views

How did Chang'e-4 hover, rotate, and then descend so gracefully? (Video)

In this incredible video we can see Chang'e-4 in it's final approach and landing on the moon from the point of view of the spacecraft. The view is horizontal as the spacecraft seems to stop and hover ...
61
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6answers
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Why does the SpaceX reusable launcher use vertical rather than horizontal landing?

As alternatives to vertical retro-engines landing: horizontal landing using wings, already discussed in Why is it preferable for SpaceX to land their booster vertically rather than fly it down with ...
12
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3answers
1k views

What were the biggest and heaviest spacecrafts to safely return from orbit?

How big a thing was able to land or splash down? Was there ever anything bigger or heavier than the Space Shuttle? If no then whats next on the list? And secondary question: what is the maximal ...
11
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2answers
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Was splashing down on the USSR-controlled territory a possibility for Apollo missions?

From what I understand, the planned landing areas for Apollo command modules were pre-programmed beforehand and happened in the South Pacific. Was there any remote possibility of an emergency ...
2
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0answers
75 views

How are Launch Ascent Trajectories and Reentry Constraints Being Implemented these days?

Historically, endoatmospheric guidance for launch ascent has been open loop and suboptimal. Recently, however, it seems as though there has been renewed interest in determining optimal endoatmospheric ...
7
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2answers
2k views

How many engines are restarted for landing the falcon boosters

For landing the boosters, it is clear that SpaceX is using the center engine, but I suspect that igniting one engine will not be helpful. If they aren't igniting all the 9 engines, how are they ...
28
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5answers
5k views

Falcon 9: engines stabilize spin

On CRS-16, the landing Falcon 9 booster entered a spin rotation due to a stalling grid fin hydraulic pump. According to Musk, the engines stabilized the spin. How is this possible? The main engines ...
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0answers
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Why the big difference between NASA and ESA/Roscosmos in evaluating the Oxia Planum landing site?

In november 2018 ESA announced that the Oxia Planum region is favoured for the ExoMars surface mission. The figure above from this answer about the 21 potential landing sites for the Mars 2020 ...
4
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1answer
268 views

Could SpaceX's grid fins be controlled by electric motors instead of hydraulics?

There have been a few instances of landing failures related to the grid fins and their hydraulic control - one where the hydraulic fluid ran out, and the latest one where a hydraulic pump stalled. ...
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3answers
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Why does the Mars InSight Lander look wet like a cardboard box that came in contact with water? [closed]

NASA has just released a photo showing a part of the InSight Mars lander wet, like a cardboard box that came in contact with water (see the picture). What is that liquid? The Instrument Deployment ...
4
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1answer
362 views

Why did they not use the Flight Termination system on CRS16 booster?

All US boosters (I assume other nations as well) have flight termination systems. The goal is to try and stop an out of control booster (Big vehicle, full of explosives/fuel/oxidizer) from causing ...
5
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2answers
292 views

If the CRS16 booster was out of control, how did it abort to water?

The CRS-16 missions first stage, seems to have had a stuck grid fin. Apparently a hydraulic pump failed. It was spinning fairly wildly and clearly did not try to land at the pad as it was scheduled. ...
4
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2answers
124 views

Propellants used for different Mars landers [till 2018]

What propellants have been used by lander to land on Mars surface?
10
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3answers
1k views

Won't the heat sensor probe interfere with the seismometer?

I've read that the Mars InSight Seismometer will be deployed before the HP3 probe. Won't the digging interfere with the seismometer? Or the shock produced will be small enough to be dissipated by the ...
3
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0answers
53 views

How was the landing site decided to land InSight?

From this article The High-Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter plays an important role in evaluating candidate landing sites on Mars. HiRISE ...

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