Space News
space history and artifacts articles

Messages
space history discussion forums

Sightings
worldwide astronaut appearances

Resources
selected space history documents

Websites
related space history websites

  collectSPACE: Messages
  Space History Photo of the Week
  Photo of the week 469 (October 19, 2013)

Post New Topic  Post A Reply
profile | register | preferences | faq | search

next newest topic | next oldest topic
Author Topic:   Photo of the week 469 (October 19, 2013)
heng44
Member

Posts: 2639
From: Netherlands
Registered: Nov 2001

posted 10-18-2013 09:01 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

These three astronauts were present at the rollout ceremonies for the Space Shuttle Centaur G upper stage at General Dynamics Convair in San Diego on August 13, 1985. They are (l-r) Rick Hauck (STS-61F commander), John Fabian (STS-61G mission specialist) and Dave Walker (STS-61G commander). Fabian was replaced by Norm Thagard one month after this photo was taken. The Centaur was scheduled to launch the Ulysses and Galileo probes, but was cancelled after the Challenger accident because of safety concerns.

mach3valkyrie
Member

Posts: 262
From: Albany, Oregon USA
Registered: Jul 2006

posted 10-18-2013 09:48 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mach3valkyrie   Click Here to Email mach3valkyrie     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I didn't know about the Thagard/Fabian switch.

I think Challenger and Atlantis were going to be modified to carry the Centaur. What is the status of the Centaur pictured?

Great photo and information. Thanks!

heng44
Member

Posts: 2639
From: Netherlands
Registered: Nov 2001

posted 10-18-2013 10:06 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I believe this Centaur was slated to launch Ulysses on STS-61F.

mach3valkyrie
Member

Posts: 262
From: Albany, Oregon USA
Registered: Jul 2006

posted 10-18-2013 06:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mach3valkyrie   Click Here to Email mach3valkyrie     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Does it exist anywhere today, perhaps in a display or storage?

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 28314
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 10-18-2013 07:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I don't know offhand if it is the same unit, but a Centaur G is on display at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Ala.

Photo credit: Richard Kruse (see more photos here).

Greggy_D
Member

Posts: 677
From: Michigan
Registered: Jul 2006

posted 10-18-2013 08:49 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Greggy_D   Click Here to Email Greggy_D     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That couldn't have been 8/23/85. I was with Rick Hauck at Patrick Air Force Base for the STS-51I pre-launch reception on that day. He was also assigned to one of the crew's families and the first launch attempt was the next day on the 24th.

Tom
Member

Posts: 1308
From: New York
Registered: Nov 2000

posted 10-19-2013 09:57 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tom   Click Here to Email Tom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Looks like Fabian's STS-51G crew patch does not have the P.S. tab on it. I don't recall seeing a patch for that flight without the additional crew members on it.

heng44
Member

Posts: 2639
From: Netherlands
Registered: Nov 2001

posted 10-20-2013 02:13 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Greggy_D:
That couldn't have been 8/23/85.
The photo is dated 8/23/85, but it would not be the first time that a wrong date is given. I'll see if I can find info on when the Centaur was actually rolled out. Maybe the Fabian patch is an indication... before PS were assigned to 51G?

JBoe
Member

Posts: 181
From: Edgewater, MD, USA
Registered: Oct 2012

posted 10-20-2013 01:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for JBoe   Click Here to Email JBoe     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
On a similar topic, what was the order of upper stages? Was the Centaur G the first followed by the PAM and finally IUS?

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 28314
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 10-20-2013 01:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Do you mean the order in which they first flew on the shuttle?

The first use of a PAM-D was on STS-5 with the SBS-3 satellite. The first use of the IUS was on STS-6 to deploy TDRS-1.

Centaur G was to be introduced with the deployment of Galileo, as noted above.

JBoe
Member

Posts: 181
From: Edgewater, MD, USA
Registered: Oct 2012

posted 10-20-2013 02:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for JBoe   Click Here to Email JBoe     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes, that answers my question. Thanks! As a follow-on, which one was conceptualized first even if they didn't fly first?

Hart Sastrowardoyo
Member

Posts: 2313
From: Toms River, NJ,USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 10-20-2013 06:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by heng44:
Maybe the Fabian patch is an indication... before PS were assigned to 51G?
For what it's worth, a Morton Thiokol-issued booklet, "Space Shuttle Payload Launch Schedule and Astronaut Flight Assignments" dated 28 March 1985 and based on info as of 25 March 1985 lists a seven-person crew for 51G, with one PS TBD and another being Baudry.

And I could swear I saw an earlier 51G assignment with Garneau (!) listed as one of the PSs...

And if there was a five-person 51G (when they were known as 51D), I'd love to see the crew portrait taken for it. Maybe Fabian would be the better one to ask why he wears the apron-less 51G patch.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 28314
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 10-20-2013 07:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by JBoe:
...which one was conceptualized first even if they didn't fly first?
To quote Mark Bowles' book, "Taming Liquid Hydrogen: The Centaur Upper Stage Rocket 1958-2002":
In the early 1970s, NASA planned to develop what it called a "space tug" for lifting shuttle payloads into higher altitude orbits or boosting spacecraft to other planets. In January 1974, NASA awarded a $1.3 million contract to Rocketdyne to design, build and test liquid-hydrogen and oxygen pumps and gas generators that would eventually be used in the tug. NASA debated the actual design of the tug and whether it would be a modification of an existing upper stage or an entirely new rocket. Four proposals were evaluated including the Air Force's Inertial Upper Stage (IUS), a rededesigned wide-body Centaur, Transtage, and the Interim Orbital Transfer Vehicle (IOTV).
That pegs the conception of Centaur-G and the IUS for use on the shuttle to 1974.

McDonnell Douglas began development of the Payload Assist Module (PAM), also known as the spinning solid upper stage, in 1976 as part of a contract with NASA.

heng44
Member

Posts: 2639
From: Netherlands
Registered: Nov 2001

posted 10-21-2013 02:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A publication about the Centaur confirms that the rollout was in August 1985. It does not give an exact date.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
Member

Posts: 2313
From: Toms River, NJ,USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 10-21-2013 11:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I wonder if the date on the photo is the date it was printed, not necessarily the day it was taken. Kind of like when my family used to send out photos to be developed in the '70s and '80s - just because it says 'FEB 75' on back doesn't necessarily mean it was taken that month....

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 28314
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 10-21-2013 11:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
According to Aviation Week & Space Technology (Aug. 19, 1985), the rollout ceremony for the Centaur-G was held on Aug. 13, 1985. An AP article from that same week confirms the date.

heng44
Member

Posts: 2639
From: Netherlands
Registered: Nov 2001

posted 10-21-2013 01:30 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Looks like a typo then, 23 instead of 13. Thanks Robert.

JBoe
Member

Posts: 181
From: Edgewater, MD, USA
Registered: Oct 2012

posted 10-21-2013 06:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for JBoe   Click Here to Email JBoe     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks to all for the background, I really appreciated it!

Hart Sastrowardoyo
Member

Posts: 2313
From: Toms River, NJ,USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 12-11-2013 12:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
And here's an artist's rendition of what a Centaur deployment would look like. Hilmers forgot he was assigned to 61F until I asked about it. Sadly, Walker and Lounge are no longer around to sign it.

All times are CT (US)

next newest topic | next oldest topic

Administrative Options: Close Topic | Archive/Move | Delete Topic
Post New Topic  Post A Reply
Hop to:

Contact Us | The Source for Space History & Artifacts

Copyright 1999-2012 collectSPACE.com All rights reserved.


Ultimate Bulletin Board 5.47a





advertisement