Questions tagged [launch-site]

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

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3
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0answers
51 views

Did the flare stacks at LC39 have pilot lights?

The liquid hydrogen fuel in the space shuttles would slowly boil off, while they waited on the launch pad at Kennedy Space Center launch complex 39A or 39B. The hydrogen vapors were removed by the ...
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61 views

Canso, NS as a launch site

I read a recent press release from Maritime Launch Systems and looked up their proposed launch site location in Nova Scotia, Canada. I don't understand why this location was chosen. If I were looking ...
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What exactly are “launch tables” and “dog bones” in the context of SpaceX's Super heavy-lift launch vehicle?

@geoffc's Pod Bay comment and link Great aerial photo of launch table with the 'dog bones' being installed. So curious how this will all play out! https://twitter.com/RGVaerialphotos/status/...
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launch rocket like bullet from steam/air rifle?

I've included an image depicting how exhaust energy from a rocket launch can be recouped by turning it into a large scale pressure cooker by the use of some kind of platform=sabot (thanks @...
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1answer
181 views

What is the Best position of an object in geostationary orbit relative to the launch site for rendezvous using GTO?

So let's say we have a space station or spacecraft in GEO, and I want to get another spacecraft to it from earth's surface on a direct geostationary transfer orbit, i.e. no waiting about in LEO for ...
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2answers
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Are submarine launches horizontal?

Are the rockets launched from submarines in a horizontal or vertical position? I mean for the space launches like Volna and Shtil. This article says By reaching orbit, LauncherOne has become the first ...
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1answer
685 views

Are SpaceX launches from California going to retrograde orbits?

SpaceX has a launch site in Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. Will satellites launched from that place have a retrograde orbit?
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1answer
221 views

What force do the armed guards guarding the Crew-1 crew belong to?

In the comments to the question Why were the SpaceX Crew-1 astronauts backed up by guards with automatic weapons?, the question was raised what force the guards in the photo belong to. In particular, ...
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Why were the SpaceX Crew-1 astronauts backed up by guards with automatic weapons?

The photo in NPR's 4 Astronauts Aboard SpaceX Crew Dragon Successfully Dock With Space Station shows the four astronauts standing in front of a serious-looking military vehicle flanked by at least two ...
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1answer
57 views

Chinese launch site locations [duplicate]

As far as I can find, 3 out of 4 launch sites that the Chinese space program uses are far inland with launch trajectories that go over populated areas. This strikes me as odd, because unlike Russia, ...
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Water Deluge and Flame Trenches [duplicate]

After years of seeing a water tower so close to the launch pad, I’m now just starting to realize it has a purpose. I was a fool to think the water tower had been there for years and they just could ...
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285 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
130 views

Top American rocket launch sites?

Which American rocket launch sites had the most space launches?
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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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366 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
1k views

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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262 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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6answers
650 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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2answers
2k views

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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58 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
169 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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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
322 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
2k views

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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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
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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
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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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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
266 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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1answer
355 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
277 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
217 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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105 views

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
146 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
106 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
130 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
308 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
1k views

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
2k views

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
2k views

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
714 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
85 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
7k 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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103 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
6k 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
240 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
133 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 ...