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  Safe distance from a launching shuttle

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Author Topic:   Safe distance from a launching shuttle
DC10LuxuryLiner
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posted 08-23-2009 08:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for DC10LuxuryLiner   Click Here to Email DC10LuxuryLiner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I probably have too much time on my hands to have thought about this but I was curious, just how close to the pad could one be during launch and survive? I'm assuming if you're outside the SSME and SRB exhaust plumes you'd experience a lot of noise and vibrations, but how far does the heat footprint travel? What would happen if you were in a sheltered area inside the MLP, FSS, or the innards of the pad itself? I'd assume all get pretty hot though if I remember correctly there are rooms and hallways inside the MLP that seem to survive so I'm not sure what the heat factor would be there. I think you'd get knocked around by the sound concussions though....

MarylandSpace
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posted 08-23-2009 09:50 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for MarylandSpace   Click Here to Email MarylandSpace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I can remember how intense the exhaust was and how the flame deflectors and bricks on the pad got severly damaged on a recent mission.

Excellent question. There are great and knowledgable minds on this web site and curious questions that benefit us all. We learn here every day.

H2IK. Garry

randy
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posted 08-23-2009 11:08 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for randy   Click Here to Email randy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
If memory serves, the viewing stands for the Apollo launches were about 3 miles from the launch pad. I would think it is the same for shuttle launches.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-23-2009 11:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The three mile viewing restriction is only in case of an on-pad explosion.

An emergency response crew is positioned about one mile from the pad inside M-113 armored personnel carriers.

During Apollo, the crew could escape to a padded bunker below the MLP.

GACspaceguy
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posted 08-23-2009 12:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GACspaceguy   Click Here to Email GACspaceguy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Always wondered what the abort scenario would have them use the M-113 armored personnel carriers? Would this be after they used the escape baskets? How would they get to the carrier and what would be going on at the pad that would cause them to use this escape method?

Bob M
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posted 08-23-2009 12:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob M   Click Here to Email Bob M     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
An emergency response crew is positioned about one mile from the pad inside M-113 armored personnel carriers.
Here they are, but were standing outside for a better view!

DC10LuxuryLiner
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posted 08-23-2009 12:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for DC10LuxuryLiner   Click Here to Email DC10LuxuryLiner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
During Apollo, the crew could escape to a padded bunker below the MLP.
I remember seeing photos of that, I believe they called it the rubber room. It was round room, seats with restraints around the circumference. I was always under the impression it was in a bunker at the end of the slide wires though, not under the MLP. I believe it's still there though not used by the STS program.

Rob Joyner
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posted 08-23-2009 12:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rob Joyner   Click Here to Email Rob Joyner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Charlie Bolden says during the Shuttle Launch Experience intro that from 800 feet the sound will kill you!

DC10LuxuryLiner
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posted 08-23-2009 12:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for DC10LuxuryLiner   Click Here to Email DC10LuxuryLiner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Rob Joyner:
Charlie Bolden says during the Shuttle Launch Experience intro that from 800 feet the sound will kill you!
The heat and exhaust would probably do you in that close if the sound doesn't. Again though I wonder how the inner halls and rooms of the MLP survive and just how hot it gets in there.

I always have to chuckle when I watch Apollo 13 and see Gary Sinese so close to the pad during the launch sequence. I understand creative license but that looked way too close for a shuttle launch let alone a Saturn V!

edmk5000
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posted 08-24-2009 09:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for edmk5000   Click Here to Email edmk5000     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
How about the wildlife?

As a kid, I remember wondering if there are hoards of deaf or cooked critters found around the pads after launch.

I took the KSC tour the day after STS-126 and saw steam-scorched plant material a considerable distance from 39A.

DC10LuxuryLiner
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posted 08-24-2009 10:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for DC10LuxuryLiner   Click Here to Email DC10LuxuryLiner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I wonder how one would fare if they happened to be in the ECS room at liftoff....

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