Post by Dave Homewood on Jun 19, 2020 8:47:13 GMT 12
Did you know the International Space Station concept was designed by a British team back in the 1940's? This is from the GISBORNE HERALD, dated the 3rd of December 1948:
Blueprints For A Real Flying Saucer British rocket technicians have completed blueprints for a real flying saucer. The flying saucer will be an inhabited space station which will revolve round the earth at an altitude of 22,000 miles, says a London newspaper. Chief designer of the space station, Mr. H. E. Ross, of High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire. told the Interplanetary Society that it would provide an effective watching post for international control of atomic energy. “All large-scale explosions would be reported immediately, making secret atom-bomb tests almost impossible." he added. The space station would weigh 2000 tons. Prefabricated pieces of the station would be taken up to the required altitude by freight rockets. Mr. Ross said that if the station could be given a speed of 6500 miles an hour at an altitude of 22,000 miles, it would balance the force of gravity and rotate in space. Purposes of the station, which would be connected with the earth by rocket services, include accurate weather forecasts, world-wide rediffusion of television, astronomical and other scientific research. Mr Ross says the project will cost about £130.000,000.
Formerly the Leicester Space and Science Centre. It has an impressive central gallery featuring a Blue Streak missile and other stuff. The Science Museum at South Kensington has a good collection of British space hardware including a complete Black Arrow rocket and the National Museums of Scotland has (or used to - it's not on display anymore) a complete Blue Streak and a Black Knight sounding rocket as well as hardware from the Europa project. The nose cone on Leicester's Blue Streak is from NMS' one, although it was on loan from the Science Museum, but I don't know if it still is.
What that article doesn't mention is that Britain captured chemical fueled rocket motor technology from the Walther Werk in Hamburg, responsible for, most notably the propulsion system for the Me 163 Komet rocket fighter, and brought scientists and hardware to the UK and set up the Rocket Propulsion Establishment at Westcott, where a series of prototype motors were built, some of which went into hardware, such as the Black Knight and Black Arrow. The scientist at Westcott even used the German words for their rather volatile fuel/oxidiser mixes, T stoff and C stoff etc. Blue Streak's RZ12 motor was based on US technology, as was the entire rocket. A fascinating topic that gets little coverage.