It is Kennedy Space Center, on Cape Canaveral.
missionunknown":wrb09cfz said:Whilst i understand the florida location choice i can't help think that the east coast of texas would have been a better location, with less hurricane risk and just as far south as florida, plus it would keep most of the NASA 'outfit' in one location/state.
Really? Do you mean spread throughout the South? Ok, I understand why they launch from as close to the equator as possible but we could at least get some administrative building or better yet some manufacturing work creating jobs up here. How about something in Michigan to help replace the dead automotive industry? More tax dollars have come from the North for decades and yet more get spent in the South.ZenGalacticore":1qp5kp20 said:I would add, on a related subject that politics- while not playing a part in choosing Florida for the actual launches- did play a part in locating the Johnson Spaceflight center in Texas; the JPL in Pasadena, CA; and the Marshall Spaceflight Center in Huntsville, AL, etc. For the same reasons-one reason anyway- that military bases are spread around, to share the employment and economic fallout of the space program on a more national level, since all taxpayers are paying for it it's only fair and equatible to do so.
History of Redstone Arsenal":1lsjoagb said:The Arsenal was established in 1941 as part of the mobilization leading up to US involvement in World War II. Over 550 families were displaced when the Army acquired the land. Over 300 of these were tenants and sharecroppers. Most of the landowners were allowed to salvage their assets and rebuild elsewhere. The remaining buildings were almost all razed by the War Department. A land-use agreement was arranged with the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) for the Army to use about 1,250 acres (5.1 km2) of land along the Tennessee River front.
The military installation was originally composed of three separate entities: the Huntsville Arsenal and the Huntsville Depot (later the Gulf Chemical Warfare Depot), which were operated under the auspices of the Chemical Warfare Service, and the Redstone Ordnance Plant, which was later[clarification needed] renamed the Redstone Arsenal, operated by the Army Ordnance Department.
In the early years, the Arsenal operated as a production and stockpiling facility for chemical weapons such as phosgene, Lewisite, and mustard gas. The use of toxic gases in warfare was banned under the Geneva Protocol of 1925, but the US agreed to sign only with the reservation that it be allowed to use chemical weapons against aggressors who used them. The facility also produced carbonyl iron powder (for radio and radar tuning), tear gas, and smoke and incendiary devices (Reed and Langdale 2001). The Redstone Army Airfield was established for the 6th Army Air Forces to test the incendiary devices in preparation for the firebombing of Japanese cities, which began in February 1945. In recognition of its production record, the Arsenal received the Army-Navy ‘E’ Award four times, the first on October 31, 1942.
Three days after the announcement of the Japanese surrender, production facilities at the Installation were put on standby. After the war, Huntsville Arsenal was briefly used as the primary storage facility for the Chemical Warfare Service, manufacture of gas masks, and dismantling of surplus incendiary bombs. Most of the wartime civilian workforce on the Arsenal was furloughed, dropping to 600 from a wartime high of around 4400. Much of the Arsenal land began to be leased for agriculture, and many of the buildings were leased for local industry. By 1947, the Installation was declared to be excess, the first step toward demilitarization. The Air Force abandoned a bid to use the Huntsville Arsenal, however, and the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army directed that the post be advertised for sale by July 1, 1949. The proposed sale never happened, though, because the Army found it needed this land for the new mission of developing and testing rocket systems. Thiokol Corporation moved operations to Redstone Arsenal from Maryland in the summer of 1949 to research and develop rocket propellants while Rohm and Haas began work on rockets and jet propulsion. Huntsville Arsenal was consolidated with the other two entities to become Redstone Arsenal.
drwayne":17qchj4d said:One other bit of trivia - NASA did build a facility for shuttle launches at Edwards - it was to support military
missions that launched into certain orbits. The "Slick-6" facility suffered from a lot of problems and
cost overruns, and launches from there never happened. The idea died officially in wake of the
mental_avenger":1ipq41ne said:It is more advantageous to launch from a high altitude such as a mountain top, than from a location closer to the equator. That also provides the additional advantage of rail launch assist.
Allow me to disagree strongly. What's the benefit of launching from a mountain top? You get no additional delta v, ok the atmosphere is a little bit less dense, which is an advantage and "distance to orbit" is a tiny fraction of a percent smaller. At the same time launch procedures are immensely complicated. There is a good reason why every major space agency launches everything that doesn't require a polar orbit from as far south as possible. This is not a requirement for suborbital flights though.mental_avenger":2jrkzwpb said:It is more advantageous to launch from a high altitude such as a mountain top, than from a location closer to the equator. That also provides the additional advantage of rail launch assist.
DaveHein":1s26pioz said:The rotational speed at the equator is about 1,040 mph. Cape Canaveral is at a latitude of 38.4 degrees, so the rational speed would be about 960 mph at that latitude. There is a loss of only 80 mph by launching at Cape Canaveral instead of the equator.
OK.pjay":1yrfp1ap said:Allow me to disagree strongly.
Perhaps you are familiar with Max-Q. Due to atmospheric density, fuel-wasting throttle back is necessary to prevent exceeding the structural stress limits of the airframe. Air density at lower altitudes also limits the effectiveness of launch assist methods such as rail launch assist. Every pound of fuel saved not only saves that fuel, but also saves the fuel that is used to lift that fuel. That also reduces the size and weight of the fuel tanks, which further reduces the amount of fuel required. A rail launch up the side of a high mountain would significantly reduce the amount of fuel required for launch to any orbit as well as making the vehicles smaller, lighter, and less expensive.pjay":1yrfp1ap said:What's the benefit of launching from a mountain top? You get no additional delta v, ok the atmosphere is a little bit less dense, which is an advantage and "distance to orbit" is a tiny fraction of a percent smaller.
Not all other considerations.pjay":1yrfp1ap said:So bottom line: an equatorial location almost always beats all other considerations when launch site options are concerned.