Wednesday, April 04, 2012

The moon landing +25 years: BIS's Lunar Space-ship, NOVA and the evolving Apollo

Here are some more snippets from the July 1994 Moon Landing edition of IEEE Spectrum.

I mentioned in the previous post that the British Interplanetary Society's 1929 "Lunar Space-ship" study was cited as a predecessor to Apollo.  The proposed booster would use solid rockets as liquid propellant pumps "seemed impossible" at the time. Their moon rocket would stand 30m tall and would be 6m in diameter.  It's mass of 1.1kg would require 2490 rockets, which would be fired by a complex wiring system that resembled a telephone switchboard.  (The attached diagram is from the BIS's website.)

"What Happened to the other runner?"

Nova launch Vehicle, circa 1959 (with an inertial measurement bonus photo)

The evolution of Apollo (and some rope memory too)