Questions tagged [space-shuttle]

The Space Shuttle was a crewed, partially reusable low Earth orbital spacecraft operated by NASA from 1981 to 2011.

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17
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3answers
4k views

Are Armageddon's simultaneous shuttle launches feasible?

In Armageddon, two space shuttles launch from adjacent pads mere seconds after one another. This seems highly implausible for several reasons: Pressure, heat, vibration and debris from the first ...
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How much fuel was used for a Space Shuttle launch?

Many of us have watched the launch of a Space Shuttle space ship, I think: a giant red rocket, some smaller, and the way smaller space ship on the red one. It reaches Mach 23 to be able to leave ...
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Position of shuttle viz iss

Is the shuttle ahead of the ISS in the orbit before docking. Does the international space station catchup with the shuttle in the same orbit?
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Most far away location reached thus far [duplicate]

So far, what is the furthest space exploration machines have been able to reach in the universe? Thanks.
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What's the thickness and weight of rocket tanks?

I found it quite fascinating that the Shuttle External Tank was as thin as 2.5mm. That seems very thin for a structure over 40 meters tall and weighing as much as 760 000kg fueled. I'm curious how ...
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What made NASA shut down the Shuttle program?

Recently NASA shut down its Space Shuttle program. Between the first launch on April 12, 1981, and the final landing on July 21, 2011, NASA's space shuttle fleet --Columbia, Challenger, Discovery, ...
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Why is the shuttle's external tank's metal skin painted the same dark color as the foam insulation?

The last flight-qualified space shuttle external tank in existence is now in Los Angeles and moved to its new home over the weekend. I noticed that what appears to be the metal skin under the ...
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What is the current status of India's RLV craft? [closed]

What is their underlying technology, and is it going to be cheaper like their Mars orbital mission?
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What were the Space Shuttle's rules about flying through clouds?

I have heard that the tiles on the space shuttle were sensitive to being wet, in that they might be damaged. I recently saw this photo, ported to be of the Space Shuttle launching. It struck me as ...
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How much reentry speed did the Shuttles shed by doing a series of sharp turns?

Jerard Puckett mentioned in The Pod Bay yesterday that Shuttles did S-Curve maneuvers back and forth across their reentry trajectory to shed speed. After a bit of looking, I found some reference to ...
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How did the Space Shuttle keep its cryogenic fuel cold?

As I understand it, the Space Shuttle used cryogenic fuel in its main engines and it kept a supply onboard for the duration of its mission for a deorbit burn. Since Space Shuttle missions often lasted ...
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How did the Space Shuttle maintain thrust/weight balance

As a seasoned KSP player, I am aware of how important it is during ascent to have center of thrust and center of mass perfectly aligned. If you don't, your rocket will deviate from its course and ...
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When have astronauts been launched without launch escape system (tower)?

The Vostok spacecraft used by Yuri Gagarin seems to have had an "ejection seat". The Soyuz launcher has an escape tower, which at least once saved its crew. The space shuttle of course did not have ...
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Technology: How would a state-of-the-art space shuttle be built?

As the title states, if a space shuttle 2.0 were to be built with current technology, in which ways or areas might it be superior to the original space shuttle? Which components could we improve? and ...
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Space maintenance after Space Shuttle Program Shutdown

I was wondering, what if one of the satellites that were previously serviced by the space shuttle, like the Hubble Space Telescope, needs repairs now that the shuttle program is off? Are there other ...
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Was the shuttle program a success? [closed]

The American space shuttle program was, from what I understand, a radically different approach to space exploration at the time of its inception. With the enormous changes in technology and knowledge ...
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What's the white tall tower with a tank near Space Shuttle launch pad?

Here's neat image from Wikipedia: On the right there's a tall white tower with a rounded tank on top looking much like a water tower. There's another one right behind the first one opposing the other ...
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Why did the External Tank not have its own engines?

Please edit, if 'engines' is not the correct term (layman here). As I understand it, you have your SRB's, then they detached, and the External Tank supplied the liquid oxygen and hydrogen fuel to the ...
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1answer
545 views

How were the Space Shuttle missions named?

For example, why was the 19th Shuttle mission named STS-51F instead of something more obvious like STS-19? Side note: One reason I'm asking is because in the DVD commentary of Apollo 13, Tom Hanks or ...
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Structural composition of shuttle liquid fuel tank wall

Somewhere I read the shuttle fuel tank kept structural integrity only thanks to internal pressure of the fuel, a'la inflated balloon; empty it would collapse under own weight; and the walls were ...
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Footage of Space Shuttle astronauts during launch and reentry

Is there readily available video of Space Shuttle missions showing the crew: During the entire time period from ignition to shortly after the shuttle has passed through planet Earth's atmosphere? ...
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Is the document “Space Shuttle Baseline Reference Missions” available anywhere?

The document JSC-07896 'Space Shuttle Baseline Reference Missions' would be an invaluable reference for anyone seeking to understand why the US Space Transportation System was designed the way it was. ...
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What exactly is the orange insulation foam used on many different launch vehicle stages?

What exactly is that orange/rust coloured insulation foam on the Space Shuttle external tank, the H-IIA/B, Delta-IV, and so many other launch vehicles? I remember finding the name of it in a NASA ...
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1answer
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What is the limit for asymmetrical design for a launch vehicle?

Looking at Soyuz 11A511 type rocket (the one used for launch Soyuz T-M-and A-M models) you can notice that the payload fairing brake flaps are displaced from the ideal axis (they are not aligned with ...
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Is it possible for the Space Shuttle Solid Rocket Boosters (SRB) to hit the Space Shuttle after jettison?

We all know that the Space Shuttle Solid Rocket Boosters (SRB) were the pair of large solid rockets used by the United States' NASA Space Shuttle during the first two minutes of its powered flight. ...
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What was the typical perigee after a shuttle de-orbit burn? [duplicate]

What was the typical1 (theoretical) perigee after a shuttle de-orbit burn? I say 'theoretical' given that presumably the orbiter would already have undergone further deceleration before it reaches ...
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How could a 90 m/s delta-v be enough to commit the space shuttle to landing?

Wikipedia claims (although with no citation) that in order to make the space shuttle land, an initial powered delta-v of 322 km/h was applied in orbit, retrograde to the shuttle's orbit. 322 km/h is ...
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How was the Space Shuttles rollover maneuver achieved?

Was the roll made using the SSME gimbal control? I would imagine the SRB does not have this capability. Is there any use of flight control surfaces as well?
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Can Zachman framework be used to find out reason of Columbia space shuttle disaster?

It is somewhat hard to fill in the table without knowing the exact details beside what I can gather up from wiki that the incident was mainly attributed to damage to lift wing of shuttle going ...
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Why was the Shuttle's LOX tank on top of the LH2 tank, since that makes it more top-heavy?

The external tank for the shuttle contained tanks of liquid Oxygen and Hydrogen for the main engines to use. These two have similar (though not equal) volumes, but the Oxygen is heavier in an obvious ...
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Why wasn't the space shuttle fully Liquid fueled?

Why was the decision made to have 2 boosters burning solid fuel alongside the liquid fueled SSME? Other designs of the time were pushing for all liquid fueled rockets (Russian Soyuz, Chinese Long ...
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What is the problem with aborting a Space Shuttle launch?

In the question Why didn't the Space Shuttle have a launch escape system? there was discussion in the commentary about why the Space Shuttle could not safely abort through much of its envelope. ...
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Why were jet engines not used in place of the solid fuel in the STS SRBs?

Considering that there is plenty of oxygen in the air at the altitudes that the SRBs flew to (<50 KM), why did the STS SRBs use solid propellant. Specifically, why use a system that must carry its ...
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How to identify which Space Shuttle, from a high-res cockpit photograph?

I found this terrific photo of an STS orbiter cockpit online, however it does not mention which orbiter: How might one determine which orbiter this is? The wear on the consoles seem to indicate that ...
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Was Shuttle tile loss an accident waiting to happen? [closed]

I recollect, that after each of the early shuttle launches, 100 or so thermal control tiles were found missing. These had to be replaced before each subsequent flight. I remember wondering why the ...
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Why didn't NASA use the shuttle to make a profit?

My understanding is the shuttle was designed as cost-effective workhorse, a space-van to ferry cargo up to the ISS, conduct zero-G experiments and put satellites into orbit. So why didn't NASA take ...
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If the space shuttle computers all output contradictory commands, how is it chosen?

The space shuttle computers use triple-redundancy, and if one computer contradicted the other two, it would be ignored. I read that if all three gave contradictory output, one computer would be ...
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How is the minimum number of TDRS satellites needed for a space station program?

What is the minimum number of retransmission satellites that you would need to assist your LEO space station program - to provide a full time coverage to ensure a total communication with the space ...
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What are the technical specifications of modern reaction control systems?

I am working on a realistic space flight simulator as a hobby, but I am finding it difficult to find technical information about modern reaction control systems (RCS) like those used on the space ...
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Were the aerodynamic control surfaces of the Space Shuttle used during ascent?

The Space Shuttle had several aerodynamic control surfaces to control it during reentry and the final phase of atmospheric flight to landing. It seems a waste to haul tons of control surface to orbit ...
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In a cryogenic fuel rocket, at what pressure is the fuel injected into the engine?

The pressure in the Space Shuttle's main engines must be very high to get the vehicle off the ground (with the SRB assist, of course). With such high pressures inside the engine, how do you inject ...
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How could aerodynamic forces break up the Challenger orbiter?

Wikipedia's explanation of the sequence of events: The O-ring failure caused a breach in the SRB joint it sealed, allowing pressurized hot gas from within the solid rocket motor to reach the ...
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Communication Blackout

All the atmospheric entry missions endure a communication blackout. What parameters except plasma penetration frequency affect the blackout time and how ? Also, Comm Blackout states that space ...
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Is the technology behind the Shuttle's heat-shielding tiles used in any product today?

Many NASA inventions have had subsequent lives in the commercial marketplace. Have the Space Shuttle's heat-shielding tiles also had a second life?
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Could Orion repeat any of the Hubble Space Shuttle servicing missions?

I have a distinct feeling that there's some apparent no-go on the question in the title, but currently can't put my finger on it; For the lifting mass to Low Earth Orbit (LEO), let's assume that SLS (...
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Was the possibility of damage to the SS Columbia made public before it reentered on Feb 1, 2003?

When I reflect upon the unfortunate circumstance of STS-107 in 2003, I seem to have memories of hearing reports of the foam striking the underside of the vehicle before we even learned of the reentry ...
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Would the Space Shuttle have met the current NASA manned flight standards?

If NASA were to apply the safety standards it is using on the CCtCAP program (Dragon V2 and CST-100 now chosen) would the Space Shuttle have met those standards? I suppose it helps if we are clear on ...
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Shuttle-C: Did we make the right move?

Shuttle, and its cousin Shuttle-C, are now history as the launch pads have been converted for use by other systems. Claims made for the Shuttle-C were that it would have taken 4 years and cost $6 ...
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What range of orbital elements was available for the Space Shuttle?

What range of orbital elements (inclination, apogee, eccenticity) was available for the space shuttle? What range has it really achieved? What were the engineered limits?
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Did some of the Shuttle fuel tanks actually orbit?

In Buzz Aldrin's book Encounter with Tiber, he mentions that some of the Space Shuttle's fuel tanks actually made it to orbit. Did this actually happen, and if so, for how long did they stay in orbit, ...