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Old 09-25-2018, 01:15 PM
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Default Delta II

The last of 155 Delta II flights successfully deployed its payload from Vandenberg Saturday, Sept. 15. With 100 successful launches in a row and a nearly unblemished record since it was introduced in 1989, the Delta II was a long time workhorse for our access to space. There were only 2 launches that weren't 100% successful. One was a 2nd stage ignition failure, and the other was the spectacular 1997 failure 13 seconds into flight that cratered a nearby parking lot and cost the local auto insurance companies a lot of bonuses. The cause was a ruptured SRB, so the Delta II itself wasn't at fault.

I really like the last photo at the bottom of the article.

https://spaceflightnow.com/2018/09/...-in-california/
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Last edited by tbzep : 09-25-2018 at 03:00 PM.
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Old 09-25-2018, 03:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbzep
The last of 155 Delta II flights successfully deployed its payload from Vandenberg Saturday, Sept. 15. With 100 successful launches in a row and a nearly unblemished record since it was introduced in 1989, the Delta II was a long time workhorse for our access to space. There were only 2 launches that weren't 100% successful. One was a 2nd stage ignition failure, and the other was the spectacular 1997 failure 13 seconds into flight that cratered a nearby parking lot and cost the local auto insurance companies a lot of bonuses. The cause was a ruptured SRB, so the Delta II itself wasn't at fault.

I really like the last photo at the bottom of the article.

https://spaceflightnow.com/2018/09/...-in-california/


Spectacular pictures. You’re right, that last one is impressive.

I’ve always been a fan of night launches. I was at a software user group meeting in Orlando during the Shuttle era. We found out that the shuttle launch was rescheduled for that week. I chartered 3 buses to take customers to this launch, a night launch. Fortunately, it was at the end of the week, and didn’t really interrupt the user group schedule. But nobody would have cared. We boarded these buses around 2am, and I recall that the launch was around 4am. One of the bus drivers had done these for years, and parked on a jetty just across a narrow inlet from the pad. Unbelievable experience for me, and about 200 other people. Many were from outside the US and never thought they would ever see a rocket launch.

This was my favorite business expense ever! But a bit of a risk — I didn’t get it pre-approved, I just charged it on my credit card and submitted on my expense report.
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Old 09-25-2018, 04:53 PM
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Really like that last photo as well.
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Old 09-25-2018, 10:19 PM
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The sound and the fury! Thanks for sharing.
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Old 09-26-2018, 09:20 AM
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And another faithful workhorse slips not-so-quietly out to pasture. Thanks for posting that.
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Old 09-26-2018, 10:55 AM
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I don't stay on top of things like I should, but IIRC, a year or two ago they said the reason they were retiring the Delta II is because the Delta IV will take over its role. While the Delta IV is a nice vehicle, it is very expensive. In fact, if not for Congress it would be gone and its heavier payloads would all go to the Atlas V, which is much cheaper but uses Russian engines. I think they still have plans to kill off the Delta IV when the Vulcan Centaur comes online.
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Old 09-26-2018, 11:33 AM
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We shouldn't be using Russian engines in ANYTHING.
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Old 09-26-2018, 11:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ghrocketman
We shouldn't be using Russian engines in ANYTHING.

True. However, we spent all our time playing with ultra expensive high efficiency hydrogen fueled engines and abandoned our kerosene (1st stage) engines. The Russians kept working hard on them knowing dense kerosene fuel engines are really important for 1st stage use. Their metallurgy and technology for this type jumped way ahead while we sat on our laurels, bragging about our RS-25 SSME and how our awesome F-1 was so yesterday, though we couldn't replicate its performance without a decade of development. And to think it was done in just a few years with a slide rule and a regular pencil...not even a mechanical one.
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Old 09-26-2018, 04:27 PM
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I'll be driving near the old Rocketdyne plant next Tuesday since I need to visit a supplier for work. I have not been near there in a year or two, but there were a lot of weeds growing in the parking lot when I last saw it. Had nice tour with AIAA in the early 1980's which include a trip to Santa Susana.

Just checked google maps with satellite view and the site is mostly dirt, so it is being cleared. Aerojet Rocketdyne moved whatever was left several miles away.


Oooo, the 3-D dragging feature allows you to see through the holes in the roof of the few structures still remaining....


Quote:
Originally Posted by tbzep
True. However, we spent all our time playing with ultra expensive high efficiency hydrogen fueled engines and abandoned our kerosene (1st stage) engines. The Russians kept working hard on them knowing dense kerosene fuel engines are really important for 1st stage use. Their metallurgy and technology for this type jumped way ahead while we sat on our laurels, bragging about our RS-25 SSME and how our awesome F-1 was so yesterday, though we couldn't replicate its performance without a decade of development. And to think it was done in just a few years with a slide rule and a regular pencil...not even a mechanical one.

Last edited by Shreadvector : 09-26-2018 at 04:51 PM.
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Old 09-26-2018, 05:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shreadvector
Oooo, the 3-D dragging feature allows you to see through the holes in the roof of the few structures still remaining....

I found a hole in one structure on Coca/Roca Rd. Where else did you see them?
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