• Hi Guest! Forum rules have been updated. All users please read here.

Some Intriguing Artist Impressions - San Diego Air & Space Museum Flickr Photost

Boxman

ACCESS: Secret
Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2007
Messages
311
Reaction score
127
I was again going through the incredible collection of images posted by the San Diego Air & Space Museum (SDASM) on their Flickr photostream and was struck by some of the artist impressions and at least one model created by the folks at Convair/General Dynamics. Thought those here might be able to identify and/or connect the dots. These images were posted on October 26, 2012 and are mixed in with some Space Shuttle art. Some seems related to the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI), as well as space-based surveillance Also, one image evokes "Blackstar" / Super Valkyrie / Mothership memories. Of course, all these images may be generic "in the future"-type images, but perhaps there is more to them than that?


Well, enough said, here are just a few of the images along with some of my impressions/guesses. Much larger images are available at the Flickr links provided. Also, additional images posted around the same time as these are well worth a look. Additional comments welcome!


"Blackstar / Super Valkyrie / Mothership"?
https://flic.kr/p/do6A61



Space-based Ocean Surveillance Radar (note the UK-Iceland Gap)? Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM)-derived?
https://flic.kr/p/do6A3o



SDI?
https://flic.kr/p/do6sqk



A '60s-era Atlas-based (Missile Defense?) Space Station
https://flic.kr/p/do6zfE



??? ?? Some bus ('80s-era?) of some kind, carrying God-knows-what?
https://flic.kr/p/do6znm



Wind tunnel model for an Advanced Cruise Missile concept? A manouvering re-entry vehicle? I give up...
(EDIT - 15-June-2019 - Looks like this may be the wind tunnel model for a late-'80s/'90s stand-off missile concept HAVE SLICK. See Secret Projects Topic - HAVE SLICK stealthy, conformal missile.)
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/8126331738/in/photostream
 
Last edited:

Michel Van

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Aug 13, 2007
Messages
4,654
Reaction score
683
that idea of Dr. Krafft A. Ehricke for orbital Outpost


in detail by us
http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,3531.msg27974.html#msg27974



definitely a Ocean Surveillance Radar
[/size]see high orbit it has and were it scan the ocean
 

starviking

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2006
Messages
1,060
Reaction score
145
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/8126308563/in/photostream

That could be a production version of the SDI homing overlay experiment interceptor which unfurled a large array to increase the chances of a hit on a warhead - going from the segmented section at the front.

Alternatively, it could be the nuke pumped X-ray laser SDI system. They were supposed to have an array of lazing rods at the front which focused the laser beams on the target.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/8126331738/in/photostream

Reminds me of some of the pop-out winged shuttle precursor projects - especially the Convair Triamese and Biamese concepts. The tail planes seem to be foldable - and the flat underside lends itself to mating with another vehicle ;)
 

Orionblamblam

ACCESS: Above Top Secret
Top Contributor
Senior Member
Joined
Apr 5, 2006
Messages
7,907
Reaction score
1,140
Website
www.aerospaceprojectsreview.com

Boxman

ACCESS: Secret
Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2007
Messages
311
Reaction score
127
Thank you all for your responses. I'm sincerely appreciative of and awed by those who participate and contribute their knowledge on this board.


Here are a couple more images from the SDASM Flickr Photostream. Given the the livery of the Shuttle in model form and the relatively garish red, white & blue color scheme of the booster, I'm guessing these models and mock-up represent a late-70s/very-early-80s depiction of some-kind of civilian(?) multi-satellite constellation to be deployed by the Shuttle (two shuttle delivered boosters carrying four satellites apiece)? The booster isn't a PAM or IUS (perhaps this is a GD/Convair IUS proposal?), nor (given that these images originate with GD/Convair) does it appear (to my uneducated eye) to be related to Centaur or the stillborn Shuttle Centaur ("Centaur-G"). Any ideas what program/proposal this might be?


Once more, thank you all in advance. :)


http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/8126307245/in/photostream



http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/8126307393/in/photostream



http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/8126331084/in/photostream
 

starviking

ACCESS: Top Secret
Senior Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2006
Messages
1,060
Reaction score
145
Orionblamblam said:
The ID's scribbled on the photos say "CVG 87..." It is entirely possible that means "1987," which would very likely make these some sort of stealthy missile as opposed to early Shuttle concepts.

I was wondering about that too, but the lack of a foldable tail fin had me wondering about ground and bomb bay clearances.
 

Boxman

ACCESS: Secret
Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2007
Messages
311
Reaction score
127
Excellent. Thank you.

Given the modularity of the OV1 platform, those clear domes are intriguing. Aside from their atypically non-classified Air Force missions, at least one author speculates that the OV1s may have been employed in relation to other (if unknown at this time) classified programs.

See:

http://www.milsatmagazine.com/cgi-bin/display_article.cgi?number=875531263
September 2010 Edition - Military Satellites
Intel... The Orbiting Vehicle Series (OV1)
Author: Jos Heyman


- Also, just judging by eye, I wonder if the satellites captured in the photo were related to this mission described in the article above:

"On March 18, 1969, an Atlas F placed four OV1 series satellites into orbit. OV1–17 measured the incoming solar electromagnetic radiation and the interaction of this radiation with the Earth’s outer atmosphere. The 12 experiments measured the horizon day-glow and night-glow, solar x-rays, particles, electric fields, and extreme low-frequency propagation. It also tested cadmium-sulphide solar cells and thermal coatings. The satellite, which had a mass of 142 kg, was not correctly stabilzsed and spinned, resulting in four experiments that required proper stabilization returning useless data. The combined payloads on this flight have also been referred to as P69-1.

"OV1–17A, also known as Orbis Cal–2, studied the unusual transmission of radiowaves through the ionosphere by monitoring the satellite with several ground stations. The 221 kg satellite consisted of the propulsion module of OV1–17 which was fitted with two radio beacons operating at 8.98 and 13.25 MHz. The OV1–18 studied the ionosphere as it affects radiowave propagation. The payload consisted of 16 instruments to measure radio interference, electric fields, horizontal ion density gradients and gamma rays. The gravity gradient booms did not deploy and the satellite, which had a mass of 125 kg, was unstable giving meaningless data. The final satellite on this launch, OV1–19, made detailed studies of the events causing and sustaining the trapped radiation in the Van Allen belts and studied the hazards to a human of incoming and trapped radiation. It carried seven instruments to study the trapped radiation and five instruments to study radiation hazards. The satellite’s mass was 124 kg."
 

Boxman

ACCESS: Secret
Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2007
Messages
311
Reaction score
127
Boxman said:
Thank you all for your responses. I'm sincerely appreciative of and awed by those who participate and contribute their knowledge on this board.


Here are a couple more images from the SDASM Flickr Photostream. Given the the livery of the Shuttle in model form and the relatively garish red, white & blue color scheme of the booster, I'm guessing these models and mock-up represent a late-70s/very-early-80s depiction of some-kind of civilian(?) multi-satellite constellation to be deployed by the Shuttle (two shuttle delivered boosters carrying four satellites apiece)? The booster isn't a PAM or IUS (perhaps this is a GD/Convair IUS proposal?), nor (given that these images originate with GD/Convair) does it appear (to my uneducated eye) to be related to Centaur or the stillborn Shuttle Centaur ("Centaur-G"). Any ideas what program/proposal this might be?


Once more, thank you all in advance. :)


http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/8126307245/in/photostream



http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/8126307393/in/photostream



http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/8126331084/in/photostream


From today's (7-Feb-2014) additions to the SDASM Flickr stream, the same mock-up booster stage - this time in US Air Force colors.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/12372204103/
 

Boxman

ACCESS: Secret
Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2007
Messages
311
Reaction score
127
Well, here is the answer, courtesy of the latest posting to the San Diego Air & Space Museum (SDASM) Archives YouTube page. It is indeed the Convair / General Dynamics Inertial Upper Stage (IUS) proposal for use not only with the Shuttle, but also the Titan III. Here is a film detailing the proposal from 1976:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5TFQAFXgst0
 

sferrin

ACCESS: USAP
Senior Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2011
Messages
13,388
Reaction score
1,430
Convair Space Station Development Program 10/17/62

Seemed like a good spot for it:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JWUtsvAX19g
 

Boxman

ACCESS: Secret
Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2007
Messages
311
Reaction score
127
More on the OV1 Program recently published at DrewExMachina.com:
50 Years Ago Today: Riding Piggyback on an ICBM
by Andrew LePage
DrewExMachina.com
21-Jan-2015

Excerpt:
The OV1 Series

The OV or “Orbital Vehicle” satellite series, which was first known by the name SATAR, was initiated by the Air Force Office of Aerospace Research back in the early 1960s as a means of orbiting scientific and technological experiments at minimal costs. To save money, this series of satellites was typically flown as secondary payloads on various USAF missions. The first series of satellites in this program, designated OV1, was specifically designed to ride piggyback on surplus Atlas ICBMs being flown to support other programs such as the USAF’s ABRES (Advanced Ballistic ReEntry System) flights. The ABRES program was started in 1963 with the goal of testing ICBM warhead technologies and assessing various penetration aids under realistic ballistic flight conditions. Typically these flights had excess payload capability available and they offered an inexpensive launch option for secondary payloads like OV1. The Atlas had already launched its first satellite back in 1958 as part of Project SCORE (see “Vintage Micro: The Talking Atlas”), was used to orbit America’s manned Mercury spacecraft and was already being used with a variety of upper stages to serve as a satellite launch vehicle so this versatile rocket was certainly suited to the task.

The OV1 satellites were built by the manufacturer of the Atlas ICBM, General Dynamics (whose space division was sold to Lockheed in 1993 and is now part of the aerospace giant, Lockheed Martin). Most of the OV1 satellites were of a standardized design consisting of a cylinder with hemispherical caps having a total length of 1.39 meters and a diameter of 0.69 meters. With a mass usually less than 100 kilograms and a volume of 0.17 cubic meters available in the cylindrical center section for about 36 kilograms experiment hardware, the OV1 was a microsatellite by today’s definition.
*** The remainder of the article is linked at the title ***
 

Boxman

ACCESS: Secret
Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2007
Messages
311
Reaction score
127
Among the San Diego Air and Space Museum's (SDASM) latest posting of Atlas and Centaur photos is a whole treasure trove of Orbiting Vehicle 1 (OV1) (initially named "SATAR" - SATellite for Aerospace Research")-related photos. Over 160 photos posted. Here is a link to those which have been tagged thus far:
https://www.flickr.com/search/?tags=orbitingvehicle1&sort=date-posted-desc

Along with some examples:
Here's one being placed into dual OV1 "Hammerhead" fairing:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/23096320943/

One configured for/by the US Air Force:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/23355638169/

And another with (for lack of a better description) a deployable gadget thing that pops out of its side:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sdasmarchives/23095396374/
 

Stargazer2006

ACCESS: USAP
Senior Member
Joined
Jun 25, 2009
Messages
13,235
Reaction score
454
Maybe it's just me, but I can't quite figure what the real subject of this topic is supposed to be.

Perhaps a change of title should be considered to make it clearer what it's really about...
 

Boxman

ACCESS: Secret
Senior Member
Joined
May 6, 2007
Messages
311
Reaction score
127
Skyblazer said:
Maybe it's just me, but I can't quite figure what the real subject of this topic is supposed to be.

Perhaps a change of title should be considered to make it clearer what it's really about...
It started as a heads-up and request to identify some of the SDASM's images. The OV1 posts can probably be broken out into their own topic at this point.
 
Top