153. Weight Aspects of the Earth Satellite Launching Vehicle


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L K Hennighausen: 153. Weight Aspects of the Earth Satellite Launching Vehicle. 1957.



In July 1955, it was announced by the White House that the United States had decided to embark on an earth satellite program. Project Vanguard is the designation that has been given to the Department of Defense’s part in the program to launch small unmanned satellites into an orbit around the earth. This launching is to be accomplished during the International Geophysical Year (IGY).
This paper considers some of the features that make the design of the Vanguard rocket vehicle different from that of the conventional aircraft, as viewed through the eyes of a weight engineer. First, it is not a weapon but a test vehicle, and as such we are not bound by the conventional specifications. It is not transported and stored as are the normal rockets and missiles we are familiar with. It is not manned and will not be recovered. All of this sounds like the weight optimizer’s dream! However, there are other items which tend to balance out the ledger.


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