55 votes
Accepted

Why are Moon Rockets (Saturn V, N1) so much bigger than the Titan IIIE?

The first thing to keep in mind is that once you're moving in space, you keep moving in the same direction unless a force acts to change your trajectory. So distance, in itself, is not a factor. What ...
Russell Borogove's user avatar
25 votes
Accepted

What was the purpose of the small red tank attached to the Titan-Centaur launcher?

Thrust vector control on the Titan solid rocket motors was accomplished by fluid injection rather than gimbaling the nozzles. Nitrogen tetroxide oxidizer was injected into ports around the ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
22 votes
Accepted

Why do the Titan SRBs have an angled engine bell?

As Ohsin comments above, the SRB nozzles are canted to direct the thrust approximately through the rocket's center of mass. This prevents any imbalance in thrust between the SRBs from creating a ...
Russell Borogove's user avatar
11 votes
Accepted

Function of this big pointy thing on the Titan Transtage? Do other upper stages have something similar?

It's hard to see in your picture but there are actually two big pointy things on the Transtage. They are propellant tanks. The one in your picture is the nitrogen tetroxide tank. Reference More ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
8 votes

Why were the Titans so expensive?

This is not an answer, but some relevant data, and a wild guess. It's difficult to find apples-to-apples comparison of launcher costs, but I found a terrific source: a 1990 General Accounting Office ...
Russell Borogove's user avatar
8 votes
Accepted

How often did launch vehicles have a "Stage 0", and what does it mean exactly?

Partial answer - don't know how to answer the "how often" part. It's a historical artifact - they had years of Titan documents, procedures, display and controls, etc referring to the "first stage" ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Do astronauts set a pressure on the space craft altimeter before launch or zero it?

According to The Smithsonian, the pressure altimeter was intended primarily as a landing aid. In the event of an abort during takeoff, parachute deployment would be based on speed, not altitude. ...
HiddenWindshield's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Did the Titan II GLV execute a roll program?

Yes, I believe so. The first reference I found was a transcript of Jim McDivitt's presentation to the Society of Experimental Test Pilots where he narrated a film of an unmanned Gemini flight (bold is ...
Russell Borogove's user avatar
4 votes

Why were the Titans so expensive?

Here is my unsourced "common-knowledge" answer. Hopefully it sets somebody more industrious on the right track to find a sourced answer. Titan II (built by Martin) went into production as a ...
Anton Hengst's user avatar
  • 10.7k
3 votes
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How are the Titan Transtage's tanks protected from its engine?

Very little of the heat radiated from the nozzles would be directed toward the shorter oxidizer tank, but I'd guess maybe 10% of the radiant heat would be intercepted by the fuel tank. The NASA ...
Russell Borogove's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

Was the Titan SRM thrust vs time curve engineered to allow for acceleration switches to initiate staging sequence events?

The Shuttle SRB had a similar profile, with a steep reduction in thrust from 110 seconds on: This profile is what you'd expect when the propellant has a conical void down the middle, so at 110 ...
Hobbes's user avatar
  • 128k
2 votes
Accepted

Need help understanding staging shown in infographic of Titan launch of Hexagon satellites

Here's a much better diagram (it's for Titan IIIe, but it's the same except for the upper stage, which doesn't feature in the question). Solid Rocket Motor (SRM) ignition followed by liftoff First ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
2 votes

Gemini Ejection seat usage during late stages of reentry

After going trough multiple documents and sources related to the Gemini ejection system I found a few sources which quote or have a small reference to the situation mentioned in the question. Gemini ...
Jeroen Smink's user avatar
  • 1,134
1 vote
Accepted

OPS 0855 Gemini B Separation

Thanks for a really interesting question - I'd looked into the MOL test launch a couple of times, but never considered this. The answer is found in SSSLV-5 NO. 9 POST FIRING FLIGHT TEST REPORT (FINAL ...
Organic Marble's user avatar

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