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MaxwellsDemon

Book recommendation

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There was a brief mention in an older thread about the Haynes manuals:

I just received the Haynes "Soyuz Owners Workshop Manual" by David Baker, and all I can say is WOW!  There's a fair amount of background through Vostok and Voskhod and the development of the "7K-OK" that became the Soyuz we know and love (and I finally understand why it was "7K-OK"), but then Baker really gets into the details.  I don't know that I'll necessarily need to know the exact VHF frequencies the radio operates on (though Baker mentions them), but knowing that there's both a shortwave and a VHF system that are in use in recovery operations is interesting.  There's enough general detail for non-techies and enough technical detail to satisfy all but the most hardcore.   Great stuff.   I have the "Gemini" manual on order next, and I have high hopes for it as well.

Edited by MaxwellsDemon
Name correction

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concur.  between this book and the blog falsesteps.wordpress I learned so much about the history of the early space program.

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The Haynes series are really winners.  I'm going through the "Saturn V" book, and it answered a question that I'd had for years (and had incorrectly assumed I'd figured out).   On the films of the Saturn V liftoff, the F-1 engine exhaust looks very dark coming right out of the nozzle, almost like it was an animation or something, and then brightens up a little farther down the exhaust plume.   I had puzzled about that for some time and then eventually concluded (wrongly) that it was an artifact of the film, that the exhaust was in fact so bright that the film couldn't record it accurately.

The Haynes Saturn V book, though, taught me that what I'm seeing there is the tail end of the tubular sheath of exhaust gases, that had first been used to run the engine turbopumps and then fed into the nozzle roughly halfway down, where the regenerative cooling pipes end and what is technically the nozzle extension begins.  The relatively cooler exhaust gas 'flowed' as a thin protective layer between the main combustion exhaust and the metal of the nozzle extension.  Being basically incompletely combusted propellant, the sheath is then itself burned and consumed by the main plume after a short distance, but (importantly) this occurs after the exit from the nozzle extension.

So that darker-color is real, a sort of thin 'sooty' layer of incompletely combusted gas that is actually an active protection of the nozzle extensions.   Fascinating!

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Hmmm...and I have a birthday coming up...

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