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Last Titan IV launch article - RF Cafe Forums

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 Post subject: Last Titan IV launch article
Posted: Thu Oct 20, 2005 7:21 pm 
 
General
User avatar

Joined: Wed Aug 20, 2003 11:47 am
Posts: 84
Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Reading the link on the front page...

I watched yesterday's the launch of the last Titan IV from the roof of our building (about 50 miles away). It looked like the fire trail had to be about 1000 feet long. You could see the two booster rockets separate and fall away.

I was sad because I was really hoping to see it from my backyard. My house is only about 14 miles from the launch pad. I guess the Titan IV's really rattle the windows and I missed it :( However, there is hope. :lol: Supposedly the Delta IV Heavy are even bigger and one of those is scheduled to go up next. I don't know which of the 4 versions it is going to be.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delta_IV_rocket
http://mocc.vandenberg.af.mil/launchsched.asp?past=

Last month's night time launch of a Minuteman III (Minotaur) was really spectacular.


 
   
 
 Post subject:
Posted: Thu Oct 20, 2005 10:54 pm 
 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Sun Aug 03, 2003 2:02 pm
Posts: 451
Location: Erie, PA
Greetings kpainter:

Yeah, rocket launches are some of most awe-inspiring sights to watch. I had a link in the Headlines today about the one you write about being the last of the Titan IV launches.

On March 22, 1996, at 3:13:04 a.m. EST, my family and I were fortunate enough to have a causeway pass to Cape Canaveral to witness the Space ShuttleSTS-76 launch. We arrived at around 7:00 PM and brought an alarm clock along to wake us up at around 2:00 AM. It was an absolutely perfectly clear night with no wind, and the launch occurred exactly on time, with not even a one second delay.

The rumble and noise was unimaginable, and the reflection of the exhaust on the Banana River augmented the blinding flash at ignition. It makes you proud to be an American to witness such magnificant technology. But, alas, it was all over almost as quickly as it began. At about a mile away, it took around 5 seconds for the sound to reach us. The shuttle accelerated astonishingly quickly and was well off the launch pad by the time the noise could be heard.

Unlike the old Saturn V heavy booster of the Apollo era, that seemed to dwell forever at ignition and slowly lift off the pad, the shuttles are more like Estes model rockets. Even with binoculars, the craft was out of sight (other than a dot) in moments. That's where watching on TV is a plus. Still, I would not trade the experience for a radar-guided, high-mag camera view.

Image
STS-76 Launch Video
http://science.ksc.nasa.gov/shuttle/mis ... launch.mpg

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