Skip to comments.Secret Space Shuttles
Posted on 12/12/2009 11:28:58 PM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld
The giant gold and silver satellite glittered against the black sky as space shuttle Atlantis closed in on it from below. Commander Hoot Gibson and pilot Guy Gardner flew the approach, while mission specialist Mike Mullane, at the other end of the flight deck, readied the shuttles robot arm for a capture. Downstairs in the airlock, mission specialists Jerry Ross and Bill Shepherd waited in their spacesuits for Gibsons order to go outside and attempt a rescue.
The mission of STS-27 had been to deploy the first in a series of new spy satellites that used radar to observe ground targets, in any kind of weather, day or night. But shortly after the astronauts released the spacecraft, called ONYX, from the shuttles cargo bay, on December 2, 1988, one of its antenna dishes had failed to open. Without intervention by the crew, the billion-dollar satellite would become a hunk of space junk. As it turned out, they succeeded in grabbing, fixing, and re-releasing ONYX, for which they later received a medal from the U.S. intelligence community.
At least thats one possible scenario for what happened. The astronauts may just as well have fixed the satellite without a spacewalk by Ross and Shepherd. We dont know because not a word of the ONYX rescue was reported in newspapers or on television. Why not?
Because STS-27 wasand remainsa secret mission.
Between 1982 and 1992, NASA launched 11 shuttle flights with classified payloads, honoring a deal that dated to 1969, when the National Reconnaissance Officean organization so secret its name could not be published at the timerequested certain changes to the design of NASAs new space transportation system.
(Excerpt) Read more at airspacemag.com ...
Every country has a strategic interest in aerospace. China’s space program is formally controlled by their army. Space is the next frontier for the next war. Too bad we are neglecting our programs in this regard.
Space is the ultimate high ground of the battlefield.
I disagree. The only that gets built for space are satellites and land based missiles can take them all down
Not if those satellites are armed with missiles and lasers.
as if a satellite can withstand unlimited number of missiles and unlimited number of different means from lasers to jamming
If you have a constellation of satellites it will defeat incoming missiles
waste of money and pointless. Its like the French Maginot Line
No it is not. Space satellite systems with lasers will render all missile attacks obsolete. That is the purpose of National Missile Defense.
You're right - shooting down satellites is so easy and straighforward that Saddam Hussein did it in his historic wins over allied forces in 1991 and 2003.
Not if they are armed to defend themselves from such attack.
WELL SAID. It is hard to believe how many intelligent people fail to grasp the truth of what you wrote.
The nation that dominates in space this century will dominate the world. American military should put a premium, as in top priority, on attaining and maintaining superiority in space technology.
SOS... Wouldn’t firing a missile from a satellite result in the satellite moving in the opposite direction and losing its normal orbit? ....I’ll vote for the lasers.
Only if you didn’t open the back door, too.
You can gently release the missile and light off the propulsion system on the missile after it is safely clear of the satellite. The satellite is going to have station keeping gyros and small scale propulsion to permit it to correct it's position over time.
That is why you have hydrazine manuvering thrusters.
The unintelligent too, several examples have posted on this thread already.
The Maginot line was not useless, it did force the enemy to use Belgium as a way into France. Every hard defensive line has a weak spot.
Having to do with the strategic value of the Lagrangian points.
All worked out in the late 50’s/early 60’s.
There was a time that good men tried to defend this country with lasers from space. They helped win the Cold War, only for the current crop of losers in Washington to give up without even a whimper. Had we followed their lead further, we would have regular inexpensive access to anywhere in space along with the ability to defend the country from nuclear missiles.
It occurred to me yesterday (while re-reading Crichton’s “State of Fear”) that the environmentalists hate space exploration and technology, because they actually want us trapped on Earth. If we’re not able to move about, then the crises they predict are more urgent than ever.
Of course, the Earth is not a closed system, humans are pretty darned adaptable and resourceful — and then, there’s that rapture at any time.
Think of it as evolution in action. (From Pournelle and Niven’s novel, “Oath of Fealty.”)
No... A missile creates no “recoil.” The mass change of the missile/satellite system from a missile’s “departure” relative to the total mass would be presumably be negligible.
Because STS-27 wasand remainsa secret mission. Not any more.
Thank you for post #30. I knew I should have known that name, Pournelle, having read Ring World and Lucifer’s Hammer (Niven & Pournelle?).
The strategic interest should be left to the military.
“waste of money and pointless. Its like the French Maginot Line”
The problem with the Maginot line was the enemy could just go around it. Can you go around high earth orbit?
Let’s keep the possessive case apostrophes away from the plural Ss, eh?
the cia has probably been doing this for years....the parts of the third valkyrie were never destroyed, they just diappeared...using a design similar to the x-40, launched from under the valkarie, it is pretty damn feasable for this scenario....
The current crop is only putting the finishing touches on what Nixon did in 74 when he ended Apollo. Before him, the hand writing was on the wall that manned space programs were not serious. When Orion, Dynosoar, NERVA, etc. were killed and the ill-designed Shuttle was chosen, the message became clear.
Can’t find any links - do you know of one? Or care to expound further? Very interested guy here.
Lucifer’s Hammer is one of the best SF apocalypse/post apocalypse novels. These two men are better together than apart.
We must maintain a creditable nuclear force, and have proven method to deliver such weapons
We must be able to fight a large scale conventional war, and at the same time fight another large scale holding action until the first is completed.
We must rule the high ground of Space, both for reconnaissance and weapons platform purposes.
We must be able to defeat counterinsurgencies and their associated terror campaigns.
Space is exceptionally helpful in a three other areas, but it not the sole battle ground.
As I understand it, it is a strategic theory that
whoever controls the sun-earth lagrangian points controls space.
Not necessarily. It would affect the satellite if the missile tubes were closed at the bottom but not if they were open.
Think rifle vs. bazooka.
Garde la Foi, mes amis! Nous nous sommes les sauveurs de la République! Maintenant et Toujours!
(Keep the Faith, my friends! We are the saviors of the Republic! Now and Forever!)
LonePalm, le Républicain du verre cassé (The Broken Glass Republican)
Further north, near Maastricht, in one of the wars most daring missions, German paracommandos of Koch Storm Detachment captured Belgiums Eben Emael, Europes largest and most powerful fort, by landing in gliders atop the huge, underground work, then knocking out its cannon and turrets with a newly introduced secret weapon, shaped charge explosives. Fifteen intrepid Germans immobilized the 800-man garrison. This writer was fortunate enough to have been given a tour of the fort by one of its 1940 Belgian defenders.
anyone having any faith in fixed defenses and not preparing for full out assault will get their clocks cleaned.
that's just life
here is some stuff on all this, my only point is with tech the way it is today relying on fixed anything is a fools game
just my opinion
“Because STS-27 wasand remainsa secret mission. Not any more.”
If two or more people know a secret, it is not a secret.
Got a triangular object above the trees in second to last clip:
“Lucifers Hammer is one of the best SF apocalypse/post apocalypse novels.”
I agree. I need to uncrate my SF collection to see if I still have a copy, as I would love to reread that book.
Thank you again
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