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Questions tagged [launch]

Questions regarding the takeoff or the liftoff phase of the flight of a rocket and the set of activities required for preparation of the launch vehicle leading to it.

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How does the flight trajectory of a GEO vs LEO mission vary for a Falcon 9 first stage?

How does the trajectory vary between the two types of missions? Specifically, how does the speed and velocity vary for the booster for a Falcon 9 mission?
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When have secondary payloads damaged the primary payload of a launcher?

Primary payload customers have traditionally been cautious when allowing secondary payloads on the same launcher. For example, a secondary payload is not trusted to have its own chemical propulsion ...
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How did “the kid” (John Meisenheimer) calculate that there was a wave in the jet stream and Explorer 1 would be okay to launch?

This tough question links to the NASA YouTube video NASA 60th: How It All Began which shows a lot of really nice, historical file footage and stills. After about ...
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Implementing control system to track position and velocity references simultaneously

I've been trying to implement a PI (proportional-integral) controller to allow a launch vehicle to track 2 reference states simultaneous, namely position and velocity, so that the launch vehicle will ...
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Are the ejected first stage Electron rocket batteries really incinerated?

This answer reminded me that the Electron rocket drops one of it's batteries when it is mostly spent. We might call that "micro-staging". This answer quotes Spaceflight 101: With a low auto-...
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401 views

Which launch was the first to use a dogleg maneuver?

Jake Blocker's excellent answer explains what a dogleg maneuver is, what it's for, what it looks like, and even what a real dog's leg looks like for comparison! A dogleg maneuver is done to change ...
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200 views

For a launch, how is safe viewing distance determined?

In determining safe viewing distance, seems to me there are discrete threats to consider: First is the rocket blowing up on the pad, or just above it. That would have no warning. There would be a ...
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220 views

Launchpad platform structural design

I am a civil engineer and would like to do a study on the design and construction of launching platforms for large lift vehicles, one example of which is the ELA 3 (Ariane Launch Area 3) in French ...
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381 views

How long does it take to chill the LOX and RP1 for Falcon 9 V1.1 Full Thrust?

The new version of the Falcon 9 v1.1 Full Thrust, or as SpaceX would like everyone to start calling it "Falcon 9", uses super cooled LOX and RP1 to improve the density of the fuel for better ...
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394 views

What would be the range safety for vertically landing over land rockets?

sideFrom the Wikipedia article on range safety: Rockets are usually launched into a space above the launch range called the launch corridor. If rocket engines fail while the rocket flies inside ...
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37 views

Which nations own tracking ships for support of rocket launches?

This wikipedia list of tracking ships contains ships of the following nations: China, France, Russia and USA. Are there no other missile range instrumentation ships for support of space operations of ...
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60 views

Acceleration Profile of PSLV and GSLV

What is the way to find out the acceleration profiles of IRSO's GSLV and PSLV from launch until achieving orbit?
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1k views

How far does the sound of a rocket launch carry?

Having never been to a rocket launch, can you tell me how far the sound carries? I can hear the rumble of F-15 Eagles take off from inside my office building five miles from the airport. An F-15C is ...
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256 views

What is the source of the 'whoop' sound made before the liftoff (T-3s) of Atlas-V rocket?

For reference, you can hear the distinct 'whoop' sound at T minus 3 seconds mark of the recent TDRS-M launch. This sound has been distinctive for most previous Atlas-V launches as far as I can ...
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174 views

Was it another Fishing Tournament?

@KimHolder's thorough answer to the question What are the consequences for a person who violates a launch exclusion zone? mentioned a fishing tournament. @PearsonArtPhoto's comment about scheduling ...
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77 views

Commentary-free launch video?

Does NASA broadcast live video of their launches (specifically from Kennedy) that does not feature commentary? I appreciate Mike Curie's comments but... sometimes I just want to hear the controllers ...
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180 views

Were composite materials used on Soyuz and on Atlas launchers?

I would like to know if composite materials were used on Soyuz and Atlas launchers but I can't find a lot on the web. I also would like to know which components of other launchers are made of ...
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303 views

Shortest and longest times a real rocket got into LEO from liftoff?

I'm looking for the record shortest and longest times a real rocket took to get its payload into LEO, such that it didn't need any additional delta-v to stay in orbit, starting from launch at the ...
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216 views

How has the angular velocity of Earth changed over the past 100 years?

What is the total change in the Earth's Angular Velocity over the past 100 years? I have read other posts that discuss how much mass has been lifted out of Earth's Atmosphere. I'm trying to get an ...
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143 views

What would be the implications of high-altitude or catapult launch for orbital rocket?

There are lots of questions on here which ask "Why aren't rockets launched from railguns/mountains/balloons/etc." and lots of nice answers mainly dealing with the practical difficulties of doing so, ...
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161 views

During the launch of a rocket, how close are the nearest humans?

I've been wondering how close other people are to large rockets when they launch. launch complexes looks huge; are there people near the launch pad during a launch? If yes, how do they handle the ...
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749 views

Differential Equations for Rocket Launch in Polar Coordinates

I'm trying to understand the equations of motion for a rocket launched from earth, through the atmosphere, and into LEO. I found a set of ordinary differential equations which describe the motion of ...
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284 views

Launch windows for on-orbit rendezvous

Suppose you've got a spacecraft in an orbit similar to that of ISS (let's say 51.6 degrees, but about 19 km lower). Suppose also you want to launch a second spacecraft to rendezvous with the first, ...
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How is the process of launching a rocket mathematically modeled up front?

What I am looking for is an example where real persons in the real world really need to mathematically model a situation before they need to calculate the average and instantaneous rate of change. I ...
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122 views

How much noise would the BFR make at launch?

In addition to multi-planetary travel, SpaceX has plans to use the BFR for intercontinental travel. However, would the sound generated by the BFR's launch disrupt local communities and therefore make ...
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51 views

Is “launch-on-minute” or other discrete launch time protocols currently the norm for wide launch windows?

This excellent answer to a question about collision avoidance practices for launches begins with: While the length of a launch window varies, launches within the window typically occur at discrete ...
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Optimal thrust vs isp for variable isp rockets (VASIMR) when taking off/orbiting

This question was initially inspired through playing Kerbal Space Program, however I am seeking a more general answer. I've been playing the excellent Near Future Propulsion mod for KSP, using ...
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123 views

What were Hubble's jerk and jounce limits? Did JWST have the same?

From Wikipedia: In physics, jerk is the rate of change of acceleration; that is, the derivative of acceleration with respect to time, and as such the second derivative of velocity, or the third ...
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233 views

What is the total mass of everything launched that are still in space?

Inspired by this question, total mass ever launched to orbit (this is a different question, as many of the things launched have decayed by now.) How much of it is still up there? Out of that again, ...
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168 views

How does ULA propose to get “350% more lift” out of the Vulcan design?

I listened to the annoucement of the Vulcan NGLS booster from ULA. The graphics released and show at SpaceFlightNow.com show a line. "350% more lift" but I could not figure out where that is coming ...
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71 views

What sectors spend how much on space launches?

How is the money which is spent on space flight, in terms of launch costs, distributed between different purposes? I suppose that it would be unwieldy to consider the money spent on the development ...
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0answers
85 views

What was the most recent launch of a nuclear reactor, and what are the current barriers to launching the next one?

This question about Kilopower nuclear reactors got me thinking. Answer(s) to How many nuclear fission reactors have been launched into space? How many are still there? suggest that most nuclear ...
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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 ...
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Does the 90 million cost for the Falcon Heavy include everything?

SpaceX says that it costs them 90 million each time to launch a Falcon Heavy, does this include fuel? If I where to purchase a Falcon Heavy launch, how much would it cost me to launch it, buying my ...
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0answers
57 views

How to make a orbital launch tube work?

Normal rockets would not work in a pressurized tube, but could a stage be made for the diagonal launch tube to save fuel and weight? Can the bottom stage be nuclear powered? Unlike the piston launch ...
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0answers
139 views

For a cubesat mission piggybacking on a Red Dragon, what are the tradeoffs for launch early and late in the launch window?

SpaceX will be launching two Red Dragons in 2020, one at the beginning of the launch window (July) and one at the end (September). For a CubeSat mission that would have to piggyback on one of the two ...
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158 views

Does a safety team get fined if a rocket launch fails due to the safety of the rocket?

I was writing a story and I wanted to write about this topic but I could not find a straight answer from any website. Please help
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What about recycling the helium used for sub-cooling the LOX in the tank of a rocket before launch?

Helium is a rare and expensive noble gas. When it is loaded into a rocket to be used after launch, it is not possible to recycle it. But the helium used for sub-cooling the LOX before launch (see ...
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153 views

Could it be possible to “steam” up water to orbit and collect it there?

Water is cheap and useful for many purposes in space (fuel, life support, radiation shielding and maybe even as the bulk part of construction material if covered from sublimation in vacuum). But ...
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47 views

How to reach a target apoapsis with a gravity turn?

Ok, here I go. I have as a project to simulate the launch of a payload by a rocket into polar orbit. Since original question was too big, let's get it into separate parts. First of all, trajectory ...
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82 views

Parasite Satellite

With computers and technology becoming lighter and is also effected by drag. Could a small satellite that lacks certain systems be designed to utilize an existing satellites systems like radio, solar ...
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68 views

Have there been any correlations between rocket size and the delta V it achieves

Have there been any studies that discuss the delta V of the vehicle and compare it to the altitude of operation, or compare it across launchers. If not, what kind of criteria, would one look for ...
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130 views

Databases of “scrubbed” launch attempts?

I'm curious if there is a statistically demonstrable tendency not to schedule launches on certain days, such as those that contain leap seconds (see answers below this question), year changes, or ...
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98 views

What is the sequence of the main spacecraft and CubeSats separation during Falcon 9 launch?

I'm curious about timeline and the procedures related to the spacecraft separation during Falcon 9 (and perhaps other rockets if such information is available) launch. Let's assume a mission with one ...
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How to make the cheapest rocket, but still get to the moon?

Have you ever heard of the old movie Salvage? The TV movie, “Salvage,” aired on January 20, 1979. The film begins with Harry successfully bidding for a vintage bi-plane and then reselling it in pieces ...
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37 views

Launch Vehicle LM2D

As it is well known, the circularization of orbits needs at least 3 stages. How could the Chinese launch vehicle LM2D circularizes its orbit with only 2 stages?
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69 views

Launch corridors

I was wondering where I could find a list of the launch azimuth ranges - i.e. the corridors - for the main launchpads worldwide (Baikonur, Kourou, KSC, ... as many as possible). Thank you in advance!
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How to view the Feb 6, 2018 Falcon Heavy launch?

Will the Feb 6, 2018 Space x Falcon Heavy launch from KSC be visible in Boca Raton/ Deerfield Beach area? Is there a good site for determining viewing ranges for launches?
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What are possible trajectory azimuths at Wallops?

I note that the NASA page on Wallops trajectories has a disclaimer saying that the page has not been updated and is for historical purposes only. Are the northern-most trajectories still restricted to ...