|HARP 7 & 5 in probes - From left to right: HARP 7-1, 7-2, 5-1, and 5-3.|
32,206 bytes. 301 x 490 pixels.
The Harp 7-2 vehicle was an optimised version of the 7-1 vehicle. The 7-2 had a body diameter of 76 mm a length of 1410 mm a flight weight of 18.2 kg and a payload volume of 2048 cc. The 7-2 prove was designed with a much-improved streamlined shape and exhibited far cleaner aerodynamics. The smaller 7-2 probe was capable of reaching altitudes of 105 km which allowed it to carry payloads through the D-layer and into the lower E-layer of the ionosphere - the very edge of space itself.
The 7-2 probe was used for a multitude of payloads including the standard ejectable chaff flown in the 5-1 probes. Of note was the 7-2 probe's ability to carry chemical payloads such as caesium nitrate, which was used to create artificial electron clouds, and to carry Langmuir probes with associated radio telemetry.
The 7 inch HARP gun system proved to be a valuable atmospheric research tool with some 60 operational flights over a 3 year period. Perhaps the least recognised gun system of the HARP program, the 7 inch HARP guns were poised to prove just how versatile and valuable a research tool they could have been when, in 1967, the HARP project abruptly ended leaving their true potential unfulfilled.
by Richard K Graf
Total Length: 1.4 m. Maximum Diameter: 0.1 m. Total Mass: 18 kg.
|HARP 7 inch Gun|
20,598 bytes. 249 x 456 pixels.