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Thread: Moon Shot; 1969

  1. #61
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    My brother worked for different companies which had contracts to serve NASA. I have been to many launches going back to Mercury. The launch sites were restricted as far as watching it up close. Most people there were connected like me who had a relative with clearance. So much has come from the space program.

    Once I watched a launch of a military launch at night with the Indian river between the shuttle and me it was the most memorable launch since it was at night.

    The launches like that one were military and not advertised a lot though that kind of thing is never totally secret. I recall fishing out of Cape Canaveral once and being surprised there was a launch we watched being in the right place at the right time.

    I will visit there again soon.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spinit View Post
    My brother worked for different companies which had contracts to serve NASA. I have been to many launches going back to Mercury. The launch sites were restricted as far as watching it up close. Most people there were connected like me who had a relative with clearance. So much has come from the space program.

    Once I watched a launch of a military launch at night with the Indian river between the shuttle and me it was the most memorable launch since it was at night.

    The launches like that one were military and not advertised a lot though that kind of thing is never totally secret. I recall fishing out of Cape Canaveral once and being surprised there was a launch we watched being in the right place at the right time.

    I will visit there again soon.
    Nothing beats a night launch... Such a dramatic spectacle (with flood lighting) + the sound and shock waves.



    Not many people can say they have been to a Mercury launch.

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    Sorry I can't join the 9 year olds club, I was 8. Damn impressive the USA put a man on the moon at a time when CNC machining was in it's infancy, and a computer the equivalent of a mid 70's scientific calculator took up a whole room. Thumps up to anyone involved from top to bottom.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dualkit View Post
    Sorry I can't join the 9 year olds club, I was 8. Damn impressive the USA put a man on the moon at a time when CNC machining was in it's infancy, and a computer the equivalent of a mid 70's scientific calculator took up a whole room. Thumps up to anyone involved from top to bottom.
    You are absolutely right Dualkit,
    I,m sure there were some NC going on, but you are correct, most of the hardware was made by journeymen level machininst and toolmakers.

    Keep in mind, for NASA to land, they were smart enough to know that they needed to make reliable bullet proof semi conductor.

    Intel owes their existence to the Apollo Program.

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    In the tiny little town of Willard WI there was an isolated gravel pit.
    Some "Toughs" came up from Chicago, and made a bit of a show how they LOVED their guns....
    Also had some more friends coming up, and the locals were warned not to go Near the gravel pit.. Thy did NOT want to be disturbed.
    It worked. No one dared to go near that place.
    They could hear the big guns booming occasionally from there. It sounded serious.

    They actually had very high speed cameras, and launchers.. They were testing and inventing heat shield materials and methods.
    One of the critical technologies for getting someone back down again.
    IIRC cork was one of the better materials they tried.

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    I remember my brothers getting me up in the middle of the night, to look in the sky trying to see this object...

    1st Communication Satellite: A Giant Space Balloon 50 Years Ago | Space

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    Quote Originally Posted by 3t3d View Post
    In the tiny little town of Willard WI there was an isolated gravel pit.
    Some "Toughs" came up from Chicago, and made a bit of a show how they LOVED their guns....
    Also had some more friends coming up, and the locals were warned not to go Near the gravel pit.. Thy did NOT want to be disturbed.
    It worked. No one dared to go near that place.
    They could hear the big guns booming occasionally from there. It sounded serious.

    They actually had very high speed cameras, and launchers.. They were testing and inventing heat shield materials and methods.
    One of the critical technologies for getting someone back down again.
    IIRC cork was one of the better materials they tried.
    At Air 'n space / Garber facility (in the early 90's) I used to walk past almost every morning a rough and ready display** that had heat shields made by the Chinese* space program, early satellites and photo reconnaissance / retrieval systems... They were made of Oak (interesting patterns of "Ablation" for something that came off a tree, seemed to work pretty well). So Cork seems reasonable lol. Interesting the honeycomb / epoxy filled ablative heat shield work extremely well for Apollo capsule.


    In the film business there are at least a couple of notable facilities one in San Francisco especially that is hidden in plain site. Large compounds with barbed wire and security attract a lot of attention. A large -ish facility that looks like an everyday strip mall is even better for 'Hiding" with low effort.

    __________________________________________________ _______________________________________________


    * I remember we had a visiting research fellow from china that came to the Smithsonian to research the history of the Chinese space program (true story) in the 90's also. I thought this would have to be the thinnest thesis / dissertation ever (like 4 to 8 pages long). Look what the Chinese have accomplished in space since (they really mean it ! (and the Moon is firmly in their sights for manned exploration; The have accomplished a lot in a short space of time. ).

    ** At Garber / Smithsonian restoration facility they also had a very rough display case ten yards down that had displayed in a rather discarded fashion Spock's spare (prosthetic) ears and a few tribbles thrown in the same case for good measure set against WWII aircraft [Totally random]... How things have changed in terms of "Reverence" for such things; now totally iconic , but they have to go through their phases of being completely out of fashion / near "Rubbish" before they become revered and precious historic "Artifacts" from popular culture.


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