Uploaded on Feb 4, 2009
One of America's mistakes was not going through with the USAF Space program that as we know now, today with benefit of 20-20 hindsight, was sound using small, reusable aerospace re-entry gliders and a Manned Orbital Laboratory (MOL) space station but instead we poured $BILLIONS down the NASA rat hole of the dangerously flawed Space Shuttle. The Shuttle itself as an aerospace plane owes its existence to X-20 research and is sound, its just too big; the problem was and still is THE BOOST PHASE to get it into space from zero-to-hero; from zero speed on the launching pad to 10, 000+ mph using liquid-fueled rockets. The Space Shuttle is so heavy, its main liquid rocket fuel engines cannot even lift it from the pad! NASA then absurdly attached two SOLID rocket boosters to cheat and get it off the pad at extreme danger--since once lit they are uncontrollable which lead to the 1986 Challenger disaster that murdered 7 astronauts. Aerospace engineers knew from the drawing board that solid rocket boosters were unsound and unsafe, but didnt blow-the-whistle and the Space Shuttle racket continued to flow $ into NASA. They also knew that placing the aerospace plane ALONGSIDE the liquid oxygen fuel tank where ice fragments would break off during the boost phase was fundamentally unsound, yet the madness continued leading to the 2003 slaughter of another 7 astronauts when Columbia burned up during re-entry due to heat tile damage from an ice chunk. NASA = Need Another Seven Astronauts.
For more details:
"Dyna-Soar: Hypersonic Strategic Weapons System" compiled by archives & edited by Robert Godwin; Apogee Books, Ontario, Canada, 2003
Originally proposed in 1934 by an Austrian engineer by the name of Eugen Sänger, it had the potential to be the ultimate super-weapon. Sänger's design soon found its way into the hands of the Nazi regime in Germany where it was refined at the Goring Institute.
In 1952 Walter Dornberger, a one-time German army general who had run the rocket program at the infamous Peenemünde facility, sent an unsolicited proposal to the Air Force on behalf of the Bell Aircraft Company. Dornberger saw that Sänger's idea was still valid and that current technology was catching up with the concept.
In 1954 the United States Air Force and the Bell Aircraft Company arranged a contract for the study of an advanced, bomber-reconnaissance weapon system.
By June 1959 the whole idea had been dropped in the lap of the Boeing company who had spent millions on research in their bid to win the coveted contract. The new vehicle was to be called Dyna-Soar, a catchy abbreviation which stood for Dynamic Soarer. This new vehicle would be able to be dispatched to anywhere on Earth in a matter of hours and would provide the long-range radar systems of the time only a three minute warning of its impending arrival.
It was a Space Shuttle with a mission - to drop a weapon payload anywhere on Earth and to do so while approaching its target at hypersonic velocity - 18,000 miles per hour.
Between 1957 and 1963 the Dyna-Soar program consumed $430 million of the US taxpayer's money. However, it never flew.
Cancelled less than two weeks after President Kennedy's assassination, the Dyna-Soar (or X-20) was consigned to oblivion by the stroke of a pen.
Today, much of the research and technology acquired during the Dyna-Soar program is still valid. Some of it went into the Space Shuttle and some is still being used as background for the USAF Falcon program and NASAs Orbital Space Plane (OSP).
The story of Dyna-Soar is one of the great "what-ifs" of American aerospace history. If it had been seen to completion it might have seen service as a weapon, a shuttle, a life-boat for the space station, a tourist vehicle, or in its proposed advanced versions even a conveyance for regular trips to a moon base.
For the first time this book compiles many of the critical government documents that tell the story of America's extraordinary lost spacecraft.
Over 100 B&W pictures, 16 pages of color pictures and over 200 drawings and charts.
Want to build a 1:144 scale model of the amazing X-20 DynaSoar on top of its Titan III booster? ANIGRAND Models offers one in resin (cut parts carefully and superglue together)
Or 1:72 scale versions:
Titan II booster
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