Encyclopedia Astronautica
1965.06.15 - Reduced Apollo Block II service propulsion system for Saturn IB missions


Independent studies were made at MSC and North American to determine effects and impact of off-loading certain Block II service propulsion system components for Saturn IB missions. The contractor was requested to determine the weight change involved and schedule and cost impact of removing one oxidizer tank, one fuel tank, one helium tank and all associated hardware (fuel and oxidizer transfer lines, propellant quantity sensors and certain gaging wire harnesses) from CSM 101 and CSM 103. The MSC study was oriented toward determining technical problems associated with such a change and the effects on spacecraft operational requirements. The North American study indicated that removing the equipment would save about 690 000, along with a weight reduction of approximately 454 kg (1,000 lbs).

Their report also indicated there would be no schedule impact provided go-ahead was given for CSM 101 prior to June 1, 1965, and for CSM 103 prior to November 1, 1965.

The MSC study indicated a maximum burn limitation of 280 seconds, due to excessive drop in helium temperature; and also pointed out that the change to the gaging system might not be as simple as North American stated because of the arrangement of the secondary sensing system. However, those problems did not appear insurmountable.

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