Tuesday, October 12, 2010
A rainshower falls in the desert north of Kitt Peak. The Spacewatch 36 inch telescope is in the dome on the right. This image was taken with the kit lens at 25mm focal length with an exposure of 1/640 seconds at f/8, ISO 200.
Saturday, October 09, 2010
The new Mobile Launch Tower for the Ares I rocket was recently completed and stands next to the VAB. Like The Apollo/Saturn V stack, the Ares rockets will be assembled on a mobile launch tower and carried out to the launch pads on the giant crawlers. The permanent towers on the launch pads that have stood on pads 39A and 39B will be torn down. This image was taken with the kit lens at 38m focal length with an exposure of 1/500 seconds at f/5, ISO 400.
Friday, October 08, 2010
This gravel filled crawlerway is used by the giant crawler/transporter to carry Space Shuttles (and in the days of Apollo, the mighty Saturn V rockets) from the VAB out to the launch pads about 3 miles away. This image was taken with the kit lens at 18mm focal length with an exposure of 1/80 seconds at f/8, ISO 100.
Thursday, October 07, 2010
The Apollo 14 CM is on display at the KSC Saturn V center. The last time I visited, this CM was over at the nearby Astronaut Hall of Fame. It shows the affects of entering the atmosphere at 25,000 mph on its return from the Moon. When it flew it had a silver mylar insulation over the forward heatshield. At left is the open hatch which shows the round window. Below the hatch are two hand rails that might have been used if the crew had to return to the CM by EVA if they failed to dock the LM. Between the hand rails are two pitch RCS motors. Near the bottom center are two roll RCS motors and at the right edge of the CM are 2 yaw RCS motors. At the apex of the CM are packed parachutes & other recovery components. This image was taken with my 10mm fisheye lens with an exposure of 1/15 seconds at f/2.8, ISO 400.
Wednesday, October 06, 2010
Here's one view you can have during lunch. The LM descent engine nozzle is at center with the heat shield around it and the legs in the four corners. The contraption left of the engine at the edge of the stage is the landing radar. The front of the LM with the ladder on the front landing gear is at lower right.
Tuesday, October 05, 2010
Monday, October 04, 2010
If you have lunch at the Moon Rock Cafe in the Saturn V center, you can sit at tables right underneath a real live Lunar Module. This is LM-9 which was originally scheduled to fly the Apollo 15 mission before that mission was canceled. LM-9 was an "H" series LM similar to what flew on Apollos 11, 12, 13 and 14. Apollo 15 flew LM-10, the first of the "J" series LMs designed for longer stays on the Moon and to carry more weight to the lunar surface (including the Lunar Rovers). LM-9 became an unflown spare and one of only three flight ready LMs that rest in museums (LM-2 at the NASM in Washington D.C and LM-13 is at the Cradle of Aviation on Long Island). Several other simulators, replicas and test articles can be found in other museums. This image was taken with my 10mm fisheye lens with an exposure of 1/40 seconds at f/5, ISO 400.
Sunday, October 03, 2010
The S-IVB used a single J-2 engine to finish propelling the Apollo spacecraft into low Earth orbit where the crew and ground controllers gave the spacecraft a thorough checkout before initiating the Trans-Lunar Injection burn by restarting the J-2 engine. This image was taken with the kit lens at 34mm focal length with and exposure of 1/60 seconds at f/4.5, ISO 1600.
Saturday, October 02, 2010
Here is the third stage of the Saturn V rocket on display at KSC, the S-IVB. This one is actually S-IVB-514 which would have launched Apollo 19 on its canceled mission to the Moon. Nicely visible is the lone J-2 engine that would have made two burns, first putting the Apollo spacecraft into Earth orbit after separating from the S-II stage and then a second time to put the Apollo spacecraft on a path to the Moon during a burn called Trans-Lunar Injection or TLI. Starting with Apollo 13, these rocket stages were targeted to impact the Moon to provide a large explosion to create vibrations for the previously installed seismometers left by earlier Apollo landings. This image was taken with my fisheye lens with an exposure of 1/25 seconds at f/5, ISO 400.