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Old 11-07-2019, 11:42 AM
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gary is offline
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Mt. Kuring-Gai
Posts: 5,224
Cool John C. Houbolt's 1961 report on Manned Lunar-Landing through Lunar-Orbit Rendezvous

John C. Houbolt's 1961 report on "Manned Lunar-Landing through Lunar Orbit Rendezvous" (PDF):-



In the course of conducting research on the problem of space rendezvous
and on various aspects of manned space missions, Langley Research
Center has evolved what is believed to be a particularly appealing scheme
for performing the manned lunar landing mission. The key to the mission
is the use of lunar rendezvous, which greatly reduces the size of the
booster needed at the earth.

More definitely the mission may be described essentially as follows:
A manned exploration vehicle is considered on its way to the moon. On
approach, this vehicle is decelerated into a low-altitude circular orbit
about the moon. From this orbit a lunar lander descends to the moon
surface, leaving the return vehicle in orbit. After exploration the
lunar lander ascends for rendezvous with the return vehicle. The return
vehicle is then boosted into a return trajectory to the earth, leaving
the lander behind.

The significant advantage brought out by this procedure is the
marked reduction in escape weight required; the reduction is, of course,
a direct reflection of the reduced energy requirements brought about by
leaving a sizable mass in lunar orbit, in thi s case, the return capsule
and return propulsion system.

This report has been prepared by members of the Langley Research
Center to indicate the research that has been conducted, and what a
complete manned lunar landing mission using this system would entail.
For further reference, main contacts are John D. Bird, Arthur W. Vogeley,
or John C. Houbolt.

October 31, 1961
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Old 11-07-2019, 05:32 PM
Dazzled by the Cosmos.

Dennis is offline
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Brisbane
Posts: 10,873
Hi Gary

As with all innovations, break throughs, thinking outside the box, creative genius, etc., it all seems so obvious after the event.

Wonderful stuff.


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