One owner, lightly used.
What could possible be wrong.
Amazon boss Jeff Bezos and his deep-sea salvage crew have successfully raised enough wreckage from the seabed off Florida to rebuild two of the massive F-1 rocket engines that once powered NASA's Apollo missions. F-1 rocket from an Apollo engine A fixer-upper in mechanical terms "We found so much," Bezos said in a blog …
"Although the rockets are still technically the property of NASA the salvage attempt has been a privately-funded operation sponsored by Bezos and his chums."
Has he spoken to and more importantly reached any sort of agreement with NASA about this, uh, really trivial and purely technical matter - i.e. who owns them and/or who is going to decide on the engines disposition?
Indeed NASA are aware and in support of the matter.
In Jeff's Bezos blog on the matter (already linked in this conversation) he states the following:
Finally, I want to thank NASA. They extended every courtesy and every helping hand – all of NASA’s interactions were characterized by plain old common sense, something which we all know is impressive and uncommon. We're excited to be bringing a couple of your F-1s home.
While not an outright declaration of their blessing, it is obviously strongly inferred.
You can be sure that U.S. only allows one of their own, trusted plutocrats to get his fingers on one of the most powerful rocket motors. These things still have massive military and political value and I would not be surprised to learn that parts of it are still classified secrets. You can build a nice ICBM with one of these. Not everybody really needs sold-fuel ICBMs when getting into that activity.
All your law technicalities mean exactly nothing when it comes to strategic weapons and surely they will find a way to route you to Gitmo if you try to grab one without their (written or not) permission.
A fitting picture.
"Nearly 50 years ago" -- Sorry, I was born days after Apollo 11 and I'm not that close to 50...the date range for Saturn V flights was more like 40-45 years ago.
"Plummeted into the sea at 5000 mph" -- The terminal velocity for a spent stage 1 booster would be much closer to 500 mph than 5000.
"Sorry, I was born days after Apollo 11 and I'm not that close to 50"
Come on, don't kid yourself about how the years have flown, mate! I was a toddler when Armstrong mentioned steps and leaps, and I turn 47 this year. If you were born then, that means you turn 44 this year. So there's 44 years behind you and 6 years until you're 50, so you're 88% of the way there bud...
Here, have a pint on me and let's reminisce about the good old days like the old farts we are! ;)
I remember thinking when Dad dug me out of bed to watch the historic moment (it's my earliest childhood memory), as a child would, that the "funny man" bouncing around on TV in the big suit was talking about the fun of jumping down stairs. I had only recently started walking (or toddling I should say) and had just discovered how to jump. Armstrong said small step and giant leap, so I assumed he meant that it was OK to jump off of the bottom steps of the hall staircase - an enjoyable pursuit I had just discovered and from which Mum quickly did her best to dissuade me, in absolute terror of me breaking my silly little neck doing it!
Of course, given my very tender age at the the time, the significance of the "funny man" actually being on the moon was completely lost on me...
I think you'll find it was 155 seconds (2 minutes, 35 seconds). As schoolboys in that era we memorised such figures by heart. The first stage engines had a combined thrust of 7500000 lbs and burned propellant at 1000 tons/minute (no metrication in those days), meaning that the first stage got through more than 2500 tons of fuel before separating.
Just to be awkward... from a number of sources the burn time varied between 150 and 165 seconds, so you're both right: "it started out at 150 seconds, and the first two Mercury flights were 150 seconds, but they were unmanned. They had the whole stack, but they didn’t have the astronauts. They made flight changes for the first manned one, and from that point on, the burn duration was 165". From http://history.nasa.gov/monograph45.pdf, definitely worth a read.
Just one statistical snippet: "We got over 280,000 seconds of total burn time throughout the entire program. There were twelve Apollo flights that used the F-1 engines, then the Skylab used the last one that flew. That added up to thirteen flights or sixty-five total engines in flight. "
Very thorough indeed. The faked moon-landing was actually more expensive than a real moon-landing would have been.
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