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The Saturn S-II

The Saturn S-II

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Published by Bob Andrepont

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Published by: Bob Andrepont on Jun 25, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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04/02/2013

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SATURN
NORTH AMERICAN AVIATION, INC.
SPACE
and
INFORMATION SYSTEMS DIVISION
 
THE
S-ll
The
S-l
l
is the second stage of NASA's Apollo moon-landing rocket
-
he giantSaturn
V.
The most powerful hydrogen-fueled booster under production, the
S-I
l
is
destined for Apollo manned lunar missions and will help power three Americans to themoon. The
S-ll
is
being developed and manufactured at Seal Beach, Calif., byNorth American's Space and Information Systems Division, Downey, Calif., underthe technical direction of NASA's Manhall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala.
 
The
S-ll
stands 81-1/2 feet high, has a 33-foot diameter, and weighs 80,000pounds empty and 1,025,000 pounds loaded.It is constructed ~rimaril~f an aluminumalloy (2014-T6 aluminum). With its five Rocketdyne
J-2
engines of 200,000 poundsthrust each, the
S-ll
develops a total thrust of one million pounds. Graphically, aPolaris missile could spin lengthwise on a string inside the
S-ll,
and a Minuteman missilewould reach the
S-Ills
chest. (Figure
1)
LIQUID HYDROGEN FUELThe
S-ll
is
powered by a combination of liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen pro-pellants, Liquid hydrogen
is
a colorless, tasteless, odorless gas.Its atom
is
the lightestknown. When reduced to a temperature of 423 degrees below zero Fahrenheit, it becomesa liquid. Because liquid hydrogen offers a maximum amount of energy per pound, itbecomes possible to lift payloads which would require three or more stages using otherfuels,In its liquid state, hydrogen forms the newest of the nation's space fuels.
S-ll
ASSEMBLYStarting at the top is the forward skirt to which the upper S-IVB (third stage)connects. Below
it,
occupying more than half the total length of the stage,
is
the288,750-gallon liquid hydrogen tank. The domed top of the tank
is
called the forward
(I
quid hydrogen) bulkhead. The tank's cylindrical sides comprise the six liquid hydrogencylinders.Below this tank
is
the common or intermediate bulkhead that forms the bottomof the liquid hydrogen tank and the top of the 93,750-gallon liquid oxygen tank.Actually, it
is
two bulkheads in one: the aft common bulkhead and the forward commonbulkhead, The bottom of the liquid oxygen tank
is
called the aft
(I
quid oxygen)bulkhead.
A
bolting ring attaches the liquid oxygen tank to the
S-ll
structure. Belowthe aft bulkhead
is
the thrust structure and the aft skirt assembly. Then comes the heatshield, and the interstage which attaches to the bottom first stage (S-IC) of the Saturn
V.
(Figure 2)NEW TECHNIQUESThe construction of a rocket so big, yet so delicate, called for revolutionarytooling techniques. New and precise methods had to be devised, tested, and retested.

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