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  SS and USS prefixes for American spacecraft

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Author Topic:   SS and USS prefixes for American spacecraft
Hart Sastrowardoyo

Posts: 2494
From: Toms River, NJ
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 07-18-2014 12:17 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Orb-2 patch bears the name 'S.S. Janice Voss,' for 'Space Ship Janice Voss,' and some people have taken to using that in print. As well, I've seen at least one launch invitation with the wording, "You are invited to the launch of United States Spaceship Apollo 8."

So should named American spacecraft now be prefixed with either SS (which could stand for Space Ship or Space Shuttle) or USS (for United States Spaceship)?

Robert Pearlman

Posts: 30012
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 07-18-2014 12:21 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The reason the Orb-2 Cygnus is "SS Janice Voss" is because Orbital Sciences named it the "SpaceShip Janice Voss." It doesn't just appear on the patch, that is what (executive vice president) Frank Culbertson announced the name as (as he did the SS F. Gordon Fullerton and SS G. David Low).

Similarly, Virgin Galactic has said its first SpaceShipTwo is the "VSS Enterprise" for Virgin SpaceShip Enterprise.

No other current spacecraft come to mind as using a similar prefix.

Jim Behling

Posts: 694
From: Cape Canaveral, FL
Registered: Mar 2010

posted 07-18-2014 08:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jim Behling   Click Here to Email Jim Behling     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
There is no requirement for such a prefix. It is just a tradition for ships, not a requirement.

The spacecraft in question does have various "hull" numbers. The UN is 2014-039A. Don't know what OSC's number for it is.

All times are CT (US)

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