|astronautix.com||Chronology - 1964 - Quarter 3|
|Previous Quarter||Next Quarter|
The recent creation of the Apollo Logistic Support System Office in Washington prompted the formal investigation of a variety of extensions of Apollo hardware to achieve greater scientific and exploratory dividends from Apollo hardware. Director of Special Manned Space Flight Studies William B. Taylor suggested to William E. Stoney and others in Houston that Grumman receive a study contract to investigate possible modifications to the lunar excursion module (LEM) to create a LEM truck (concepts which the company had already investigated preliminarily on an in-house basis). The time was appropriate, Taylor said, for more intensive and formal efforts along these lines.
Point Arguello (nearly 20,000 acres) transferred from the Navy to the Air Force and annexed to Vandenberg AFB. References: 88 .
Studied inner Van Allen belt. Electron 3 and 4 launched by a single carrier rocket. Simultaneous study of the inner and outer radiation belts of the earth, cosmic rays and the upper atmosphere. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 .
Studied outer Van Allen belt. Electron 3 and 4 launched by a single carrier rocket. Simultaneous study of the inner and outer radiation belts of the earth, cosmic rays and the upper atmosphere. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 .
A study submitted to NASA by Douglas Aircraft Company concluded that a six-man space research station, capable of orbiting for one year, could be orbiting the Earth within five years. The crew, serving on a staggered schedule, would travel to and from the station on modified Gemini or Apollo spacecraft. The station would provide a small degree of artificial gravity by rotating slowly and would include a centrifuge to simulate reentry forces.
Suborbital 30 minute test of NASA SERT ion engine. References: 5 .
Commenting on Republican Presidential candidate Barry Goldwater's views on the space program, Warren Burkett, science writer for the Houston Chronicle, observed that a great deal of research being conducted as part of NASA's Apollo program could be of direct value to the military services. Burkett contended that an orbital laboratory using Apollo-developed components could be used for such military applications as patrol and orbital interception. He suggested that, with Apollo, NASA was generating an inventory of 'off-the-shelf' space hardware suitable for military use if needed.
Suborbital test of subscale model of X-20 Dynasoar. Aero-thermodynamic structural test vehicle (ASV) for heat shield tests. Launched after four hours of holds. Tested Dynasoar hardware - tungsten nose cap, molbdenum panels with vapor-deposited disilicide, and liquid-cooled double-walled cockpit bathtub panel. Reached 5,500 m/s and recovered near Ascension Island 12 hours after launch. References: 5 .
First successful Ranger; returned 4,308 photos before lunar impact. The Atlas- Agena B inserted the Agena and Ranger into a 192 km altitude Earth parking orbit. Half an hour after launch a second burn of the Agena engine injected the spacecraft into a lunar intercept trajectory. After separation from the Agena, the solar panels were deployed, attitude control activated, and spacecraft transmissions switched from the omniantenna to the high-gain antenna. The next day the planned mid-course maneuver was successfully initiated at 10:27 GMT. The only anomaly during flight was a brief loss of two-way lock on the spacecraft by the DSIF tracking station at Cape Kennedy following launch.
Ranger 7 reached the Moon on 31 July. The F-channel began its one minute warm up 18 minutes before impact. The first image was taken at 13:08:45 GMT at an altitude of 2110 km. Transmission of 4,308 photographs of excellent quality occurred over the final 17 minutes of flight. The final image taken before impact had a resolution of 0.5 meters. The spacecraft encountered the lunar surface in direct motion along a hyperbolic trajectory, with an incoming asymptotic direction at an angle of -5.57 degrees from the lunar equator. The orbit plane was inclined 26.84 degrees to the lunar equator. After 68.6 hours of flight, Ranger 7 impacted in an area between Mare Nubium and Oceanus Procellarum (subsequently named Mare Cognitum) at approximately 10.35 S latitude, 339.42 E longitude. Impact occurred at 13:25:48.82 GMT at a velocity of 2.62 km/s. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 278 , 296 .
In response to a request from NASA Headquarters, Gemini Program Office (GPO) provided a study for Gemini missions beyond the 12 originally planned. 'The Advanced Gemini Missions Conceptual Study' described 16 further missions, including a space station experiment, a satellite chaser mission, a lifeboat rescue mission, and both a circumlunar and lunar orbiting mission. On February 28, 1965, GPO reported that a preliminary proposal for Gemini follow-on missions to test the land landing system had not been approved. Spare Gemini launch vehicles 13, 14, and 15 were canceled, and there were no current plans for Gemini missions beyond the approved 12-flight program.
Central Committee of the Communist Party and Council of Soviet Ministers Decree 655-268 'On Work on the Exploration of the Moon and Mastery of Space--piloted LK-1 circumlunar and L3 lunar landing projects and the Ye-6M lunar lander' was issued. References: 474 .
Proposed high altitude manned Vostok flight for extended scientific studies. Spacecraft would have been allowed to naturally decay to a re-entry after ten days. Purposes of these flights were to be: geophysical and astronomical research; photography of the solar corona; solar x-ray imagery; medical-biological research; detailed study of the effects of weightlessness on the human organism; dosimetry; and engineering tests of ion flow sensors to be used for orientation of later Soyuz spacecraft. All follow-on Vostok missions cancelled in Spring 1964. References: 283 , 294 .
Command number 655-268 was issued by Central Committee of Communist Party. Chelomei was to develop the LK-1 for the manned lunar flyby while Korolev was to develop the N1-L3 for the manned lunar landing. First launch of the N1 was to be by the first quarter 1966, with manned lunar landings in 1967 to 1968. Reprioritization led to work being stopped on Korolev's Zvezda 6 man orbiting weapons platform by mid-1965, after a huge mockup had been built. Chelomei as usual issued the advanced project for the LK-1 on the same day. The decree also ordered development of the three-stage version of his Proton UR-500 to boost the LK-1 around the moon. References: 75 .
Willis B. Foster, Director of Manned Space Science in the Office of Space Science and Applications, distributed a preliminary draft report of the Ad Hoc Astronomy Panel of the Orbiting Research Laboratory (ORL). The panel, which met on 26 October 1963 and again on 24 June 1964, was created to sound out the American scientific community on the validity of manned astronomy in space and to define astronomy objectives for the ORL, mission. Additional Details: Preliminary draft report of the Ad Hoc Astronomy Panel of the Orbiting Research Laboratory (ORL)..
Central Committee of the Communist Party and Council of Soviet Ministers Decree 'On formation of the State Commission for Voskhod' was issued. References: 474 .
MSC's Spacecraft Integration Branch proposed an Apollo 'X' spacecraft to be used in Earth orbit for biomedical and scientific missions of extended duration. The spacecraft would consist of the lunar Apollo spacecraft and its systems, with minimum modifications consisting- of redundancies and spares. The concept provided for a first-phase mission which would consider the Apollo 'X' a two-man Earth-orbiting laboratory for a period of 14 to 45 days. The spacecraft would be boosted into a 370-km orbit by a Saturn IB launch vehicle. Additional Details: Apollo X spacecraft to be used in Earth orbit for extended duration biomedical and scientific flights..
KH-5. 15% of stellar film degraded by flare. Image smearing on leading edge of main camera film. Final ARGON mission. Officially: Spacecraft Engaged in investigation of spaceflight techniques and technology (US Cat A). References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 .
Stage II of Gemini launch vehicle (GLV) 2 was deerected and stored; the erector was lowered to horizontal, and stage I was lashed in its vertical position. Stage II was reerected September 1. Power was applied to the launch vehicle September 2, and Subsystem Functional Verification Tests (SSFVT) began September 3. When forecasts indicated that Hurricane Dora would strike Cape Kennedy, both stages of GLV-2 were deerected on September 8 and secured in the Missile Assembly Building. Hurricane Ethel subsequently threatened the area, and both stages remained in the hanger until September 14, when they were returned to complex 19 and reerected. SSFVT, begun again on September 18, ended successfully October 5.
Returned 27,000 cloud cover images. The spacecraft carried an advanced vidicon camera system for recording and storing remote cloudcover pictures, an automatic picture transmission camera for providing real-time cloud cover pictures, and a high-resolution infrared radiometer to complement the daytime TV coverage and to measure nighttime radiative temperatures of cloud tops and surface terrain. A short second-stage burn resulted in an unplanned eccentric orbit. Otherwise, the spacecraft and its experiments operated successfully until September 22, 1964. The solar paddles became locked in position, resulting in inadequate electrical power to continue operations. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 .
USAF Suborbital test of ion engine. References: 5 .
Two experiment booms failed to properly deploy, with one of the booms obscuring a horizon scanner's view of earth. As a result, the spacecraft attitude could not be earth oriented and OGO 1 remained spin stabilized at 5 rpm. Nevertheless, data from all 20 experiments on board was received, although at a 'less than expected capacity' from some of them. Twelve of the experiemnts were particle studies and two were magnetic field studies. In addition, there was one experiment for each of the following types of studies: interplanetary dust, VLF, Lyman-alpha, Gegenschein, atmospheric mass, and radio astronomy. During September 1964, acceptable data were received over 70% of the orbital path. By June 1969, data acquisition was limited to 10% of the orbital path. Spacecraft operation was restricted to Spring and Fall due to power supply limitations. There were 11 such 3-month periods prior to the spacecraft being put into stand-by mode on 25 November 1969. By April 1970 the spacecraft perigee had increased to 46,000 km and the inclination had increased to 58.8 deg. All support was terminated November 1, 1971. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 278 .
DF-1 renumbered as DF-3; prior DF-3 project cancelled. References: 87 .
Apollo Mission A-102, using BP-15 for the command and service modules (CSM) and SA-7 for the launch vehicle, confirmed Saturn Block II and CSM compatibility as well as the launch escape vehicle system. References: 16 .
A background briefing for the press regarding astronomy programs was held in Washington. Nancy Roman, who directed the agency's astronomy activities, disclosed that NASA was studying the feasibility of a manned orbiting telescope. Although the telescope would be designed to operate automatically, man would adjust its focus, collect film packets, and make any necessary repairs. The space agency had already invited members of the scientific community to propose astronomical studies suitable for use in space, and several NASA centers were performing related engineering support studies.
NAA conducted formal inspection and review of Block II CSM mockup. References: 16 .
|Previous Quarter||Next Quarter|