Encyclopedia Astronautica
Nova MM S10E-2

Lox/LH2 propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 10,302,000/639,000 kg. Thrust 160,672.00 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 454 seconds. Operational date would have been November 1977. SSTO; expendable; payload 1,283,000 lbs.

No Engines: 30.

Status: Study 1963.
Gross mass: 10,302,000 kg (22,712,000 lb).
Unfuelled mass: 639,000 kg (1,408,000 lb).
Height: 54.80 m (179.70 ft).
Diameter: 21.30 m (69.80 ft).
Span: 36.70 m (120.40 ft).
Thrust: 160,672.00 kN (36,120,502 lbf).
Specific impulse: 454 s.
Specific impulse sea level: 377 s.
Burn time: 263 s.

More... - Chronology...

Associated Countries
Associated Engines
  • CD Module Notional lox/lh2 rocket engine. 7361 kN. Study 1969. Isp=420s. CD Modules - conceptual engines of various thrusts, according to design - were clustered in Martin Marietta Nova designs More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Nova MM S10E-2 American heavy-lift orbital launch vehicle. Expendable single stage to orbit Nova using conical shape, 30 CD module engines in zero-length plug nozzle. Operational date would have been November 1977. More...

Associated Propellants
  • Lox/LH2 Liquid oxygen was the earliest, cheapest, safest, and eventually the preferred oxidiser for large space launchers. Its main drawback is that it is moderately cryogenic, and therefore not suitable for military uses where storage of the fuelled missile and quick launch are required. Liquid hydrogen was identified by all the leading rocket visionaries as the theoretically ideal rocket fuel. It had big drawbacks, however - it was highly cryogenic, and it had a very low density, making for large tanks. The United States mastered hydrogen technology for the highly classified Lockheed CL-400 Suntan reconnaissance aircraft in the mid-1950's. The technology was transferred to the Centaur rocket stage program, and by the mid-1960's the United States was flying the Centaur and Saturn upper stages using the fuel. It was adopted for the core of the space shuttle, and Centaur stages still fly today. More...

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