Questions tagged [launch-site]

Questions on launch complexes, spaceports or other locales for the launch of spacecraft.

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4
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2answers
162 views

Do the Russians use a water deluge system when launching their current rockets?

After a video by What About it discussing water deluge systems I got to thinking about it. I remember hearing that the Russians don't use water deluge systems. Not sure if these would be considered a ...
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1answer
70 views

Top American rocket launch sites?

Which American rocket launch sites had the most space launches?
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3answers
5k views

Why isn't SpaceX constructing the Super Heavy launch mount on top of the water?

With SpaceX creating their launch facility in Boca Chica Texas, right next to the water, why would they bother building a huge launch pad to withstand the blast, as opposed to building it on top of ...
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0answers
152 views

What damage/repairs have to be done to the launch pad every time SpaceX launches?

As SpaceX is a company that is very focused on rapid reusability, low-cost operation and a philosophy of "the best part is no part", what repairs have to be done to the towers and general ...
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1answer
2k views

Why do the Chinese launch most of their rockets so far from the coast?

We know that launching rockets near the coast is safe for human settlement areas in case a failure occurs. But, why does China launch its rockets so far from the coast (near hills)? Many launch sites ...
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2answers
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How was the Buran launch stack assembled?

There is plenty of information about how the U.S. Space Shuttle was assembled for launch. How was the Soviet Buran shuttle assembled? Was it done at the pad, or in a separate building? In what order ...
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2answers
154 views

What is “TFR” in the context of operating a marine radar on top of a “water tower” at a launch site?

This answer to What is this propellor-like object on top of the SpaceX Hopper? includes the following: FCC filing: Space Exploration Technologies Corp. 0459-EX-CN-2020: ...d) List any natural ...
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5answers
378 views

Has any rocket been launched into orbit from a plain flat surface?

Related: Why will Superheavy/Starship have a landing pad so close to the launch pad? Most launch vehicles are launched from somewhat complex launchpads with towers, erectors, flame trenches or ...
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Why a 900,000 gallons LOX storage tank at Launch Complex 39?

At KSC complex 39 there is a 900,000 gallons LOX storage tank. It was used for Apollo Saturn V, the Space Shuttle and lately for the SpaceX Falcon 9 Full Thrust rocket. But why such a large tank for ...
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0answers
49 views

How many rising pipes for LOX at the the Saturn V launch tower?

The Saturn V used liquid oxygen for all three stages plus the Apollo Service Module. Were all these LOX tanks filled using the same rising pipe or did they use a seperate pipe for each tank? Using ...
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2answers
106 views

Why were the Little Joes launched from Virginia?

Little Joe was a program to test the Mercury launch escape system and heat shield. The 8 unmanned flights (2 with monkeys!) plus one pad abort were all launched from Wallops Island, Virginia. Why ...
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2answers
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Why were two different California airbases (Vandenberg and Edwards) intended for Shuttle launches versus landings?

Vandenberg Air Force Base was intended to be the west-coast launch site of the Space Shuttle. Its Space Launch Complex 6 was only a few months from being ready for the first launch, when the ...
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1answer
206 views

How much of the Apollo gantry, tower, and pad were destroyed on each launch? How much could be reused?

I have often seen various videos showing the huge fireball beneath a Saturn rocket launching. But I have not seen video or photos of the aftermath. Was the gantry, ...
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1answer
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Why did NASA collect so much data about electrical phenomena at the Apollo 13 launch site?

Apollo 13 was launched at Kennedy Space Center on April 11, 1970. The mission report devotes a considerable amount -- over 7 pages -- to a set of electrical measurements at the launch site: The ...
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0answers
27 views

Looking for ICS information at common launch facilities

I'm doing some research on cyber threats to launch facilities, such as those against industrial control systems leveraged by a typical launch service provider. Details of which types of systems are ...
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3answers
11k views

Why are Japan's launch facilities so far north?

Japan currently has two space launch facilities: Uchinoura Space Center (31°15′07″N 131°04′55″E) and Tanegashima Space Center (30°24′00″N 130°58′12″E). Both of these are at the south end of the main ...
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4answers
7k views

Advantages of launching very large rocket while submerged, buoyant, in a body of water

I vaguely remember reading about some supposed advantages of launching very large rockets (Saturn size and larger) from underwater in an ocean or similar large body of water. I was recently reminded ...
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5answers
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Why does launching east result in an orbital inclination equal to the latitude of the launch site?

As mentioned briefly in this answer and this Everyday Astronaut video: And just as a reference, if you launched straight east out of Kennedy Space Center, you'd be on a 28.6° inclination which you ...
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2answers
200 views

What force would it take to launch a 100kg projectile into orbit from a big cannon?

What force would it take to launch a 100kg projectile into orbit from a big cannon? And what would be the optimum angle of the barrel of the cannon? I'm working on an animation and it's going to ...
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0answers
73 views

Are there now plans to launch the Electron from New Zealand, Scotland, and the US?

Why put both Orbex and Rocket Labs on adjacent launch pads in Scotland? asks about bringing Rocket Labs' Electron rocket to Scotland, but The Verge's Rocket Lab’s second launch site is now complete, ...
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1answer
303 views

What is the utility of this peanut-shaped ground facility?

The following image is from GSLV-F11 GSAT-7A Mission: Location: Second Launch Pad (SLP), Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota, India. Please click here in case you want to see the image in ISRO's ...
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2answers
224 views

Why do personnel in the KSC launch control room face away from the launchpad?

The firing rooms of the Kennedy Space Center have enormous windows that face the launch pads. However, personnel faced away from the windows, and thus away from the launchpad. Is there a documented ...
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1answer
169 views

What is a propellant burner trailer?

CNN and NPR have pointed out that the US president recently tweeted a surveillance photo of an explosion of a rocket on a launch pad. One of the items identified in the photo is labeled as a ...
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0answers
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How do rocket launch sites get liquid oxygen? [duplicate]

How do rocket launch sites obtain their liquid oxygen used for loading the oxygen tanks in the rockets? A while ago I seem to remember reading something that implied SpaceX had equipment to generate ...
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1answer
142 views

Why were Robert Goddard's later launches in New Mexico?

Robert Goddard was born, educated, taught, and performed the first liquid-fuel rocket flight in Massachusetts. Why then were his later launches done in New Mexico?
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Australian rocket launches

Is there a rocket launching facility in Western Victoria or Eastern South Australia, situated west of Warracknabeal in Victoria? I witnessed what appeared to be two stage launch whilst travelling ...
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1answer
104 views

What scenario would require the closeout crew to use their light sticks?

The light sticks are intended as an aid in case of an emergency, and are colored orange to identify the astronaut crew, while technicians in the close-out crew carry green ones. https://en....
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2answers
126 views

Does landing a Falcon 9 first stage affect the allowable launch azimuths?

The rationale for limiting the allowable launch azimuths for many launch sites usually includes "dropping booster stages on population". With SpaceX (and maybe Blue Origin in the future) returning ...
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1answer
245 views

Was launch pad 110R ever used again after being obliterated on 3 July 1969?

A few weeks before the Apollo 11 moon landing, the Soviets attempted the second unmanned launch of their own lunar launch vehicle, the N1. This occurred at pad 110R (also called 110/38) of the ...
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How much did it cost to refurbish the Launch Complex 39 hardware after an Apollo Saturn V launch?

A launch pad used for a rocket of some 30-35 MNewtons of thrust does not come out of it unscathed. It must be refurbished before it can be used again. How much does that cost? As an indication of such ...
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1answer
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What happened to boiled-off gases from the storage tanks at Launch Complex 39?

Both Apollo and the Shuttle launched from KSC complex 39, and used liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen as propellants. These cryogenic liquids were held in storage tanks near the perimeter of each ...
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2answers
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Negative impact of having the launch pad away from the Equator

I imagine a satellite meant for reaching a geostationary orbit will benefit most from it, but being near the Equator is surely an advantage to any space launch (right?). However, what's the impact ...
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1answer
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How are umbilical connectors held in place until their intended detachment?

When a rocket is on its launch pad, umbilicals allow the flow of liquids, gases, electric power, and signals to the spacecraft. The umbilical is detached from the spacecraft at or before launch, to ...
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1answer
348 views

Why rockets are launched from sea level and not highlands? [duplicate]

This Is a question that was buzzing me, but since every meter of altitude a rocket consume an absurd amount of fuel, wouldn't be more efficent launching rocket from higher altitudes? Thinking to ...
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1answer
72 views

Are there any references about rocket Launchapd Design?

I am trying to figure out all the systems/structures/services that would be required to support rocket launches. Are there any references that describe this information? Essentially, I want to have ...
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1answer
6k views

Why is this part of the Space Shuttle launch pad suspended so high off the ground?

http://science.ksc.nasa.gov/shuttle/missions/sts-107/images/high/KSC-02PD-1894.jpg shows a large part of the launch pad suspended off the ground. What is it for and why is there all that empty space ...
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0answers
95 views

What was the fate of the Shiloh Launch Complex at Canaveral

Living near Canaveral, since 2013 (that I know of) much has gone back and forth about the proposed Shiloh Launch Complex in the former citrus groves within the north side of the Cape Canaveral ...
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4answers
5k views

Are there any known reasons why there are no spaceports in the European Union?

As far as I know, there are no spaceports in the European Union. Why is it so?
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4answers
234 views

During a government shutdown, is it possible for US rocket companies to launch from outside the US?

With the ongoing shutdown, it's causing some test flights of SpaceX and others to be pushed back. If it goes on for an extended period, is it possible for said rocket company to launch from another ...
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1answer
131 views

Using weather patterns as a primary criteria, would South America be an ideal place to launch rockets?

I was looking at a map of historic hurricane travel the other day and noticed that South America doesn't really get them. Florida gets a lot of hurricanes. Texas gets them too. It also occurred to me ...
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1answer
196 views

Where is the San Marco Launch Platform now?

@Hobbes's answer to a question about gregarious rockets mentions the San Marco platform of the Broglio_Space_Center. That Wikipedia lists the following coordinates: 2°56′18″S 40°12′45″E and that link ...
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1answer
432 views

What are “high altitude winds” and why do they often delay rocket launches?

High altitude winds seem to frequently postpone launches from Earth to orbit. Presumably, they are fast and strong enough to induce stresses on a rocket or impede guidance, but that's guessing from ...
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1answer
1k views

Why are lightning towers at launch pads topped with big hollow tubes with spiral windings and not “lightning rod-shaped” lightning rods?

https://xkcd.com/2107/ Why are the lightning towers around launch pads topped with big hollow tubes with spiral windings? Why not conventional lightning rods - big metal rods with pointy things at ...
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0answers
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How are the liquid propellant umbilical cord protected from the exhaust?

The launch pad umbilical cords supply propellant to the rocket, and will definitely have some remaining at the time of liftoff. I remember the Saturn V footage wherein a heavy protection door slams ...
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0answers
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How far is Cape Canaveral from Kennedy Space Center, administratively and programmatically-wise?

Answers to a similar-sounding question What is the difference between Cape Canaveral and Kennedy Space Center? deal mostly with history and geography. In the question Which has been the most ...
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4answers
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Which has been the most gregarious rocket, launched from the most sites?

Which orbital launch vehicle has been "getting around" the most? Which rocket has put things in orbit from the largest number of different launch sites? For the purposes of this question, allow for ...
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1answer
248 views

How soon will LC-39A be at significant risk to storm-surge damage?

from Format/interpretation of NOAA Elevation Data Rising sea levels due to thermal expansion due to global warming due to farting cattle and unicorns and of course also due to CO2 emissions caused by ...
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1answer
301 views

What's the geometry of Ignition Overpressure Protection system protecting rocket launches?

During a rocket launch, both the rocket as well as the launch pad have to be protected. This is usually done by shooting enormous amounts of water somewhere 'at' the rocket engines. The then ...
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1answer
235 views

Would a Martian landing and take off require a flame trench/deflector?

Flame trenches/deflectors are essential for avoiding reflections of acoustic waves from damaging the rocket system while taking off. This is discussed in this YouTube video - Why doesn't the sound of ...
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2answers
2k views

What happens to rocket stages that land in the oceans, and how many are still there?

When a rocket stage is jettisoned into the ocean, does it typically sink? Assuming yes, how many rocket stages are now lying on the ocean floor? Are there, on the ocean floor, areas where there ...