Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Soyuz Booster, Ride The Fire

For Student and Community Info

The Voyage To Intrenational Space Station -ISS

How We Get Into Space , Ride The Fire...... The Soyus Booster

The Launching of Rocket Into Space.

"Ride The Fire " is a term used by Astranaut to describe the experience of launching a rocket into Space.

The Soyus Booster bulit by the Russian firm RKK Energia is unquestionably the most reliable launch vehicle ever, with over 1,700 flights to space on records. Its origin date back to the Russian Ballistic Missile programme and the Vostok series of rockets that launched the first human, Yuri Gagarin into space 1961.

The Soyuz booster comprises three separate stages that are joined together to make one entire rocket. Each stage has its own set of rocket engines and fuel tanks that operate in sequence to accelerate the TMA capsule to exactly the right velocity to remain in orbit around earth.

The First Stage - of the Soyuz booster consists of four separate boosters each with cluster of four rocket engine. In addition, another four rocket engines in the center of this cluster, that makes up the second stage, are ignited along with the four boosters in total, 20 rocket engines fire simultaneously, creating a whopping 200 tonnes of force that sets the spaceship in motion. In just under two minutes the four boosters have consume nearly 160 tonnes of fuel whilst accelerating the Soyuz rocket to a speed of nearly 4000 kph.

Those four booster section, having done the work, are jettisoned and will fall back to Earth.

The Second Stage - Comprising just four rocket engines continues to burn for another 170 seconds whilst the rocket steadly increases its speed and altitude toward space. After the second stage has finished its fuel it , too, is jettisoned and fall back toward earth, burning up in the atmosphere burning re-entery.

The Third Stage - Is than ignited, providing the final push into high orbit. It has single engine that burns for just 240 seconds, setting the Soyuz capsule on its path to catch the International Space Station -ISS.

By now the space craft is approaching speed of 28,000 kph or nearly 8 kilometer per second. This is the critical speed required to mantain the TMA capsule in orbit around Earth. If the space craft slow down than gravity will pull it back toward Earth, as will be the case in 10 days, when it makes its fiery re-entery to bring the astronauts safely home.

Source: Aerospace Education service sdn bhd / NASA/ ESA

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