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阿波罗登月50周年:和火箭相关的五个数字_纽约时报中英文版_纽约时报中英文网

更新时间:2019/7/16 15:49:21 来源: 作者:佚名

Apollo in 50 numbers: The rocket
阿波罗登月50周年:和火箭相关的五个数字_纽约时报中英文版_纽约时报中英文网

111: Height of Saturn V rocket in metres

111:土星5号火箭的高度(单位:米)

On 16 July 1969, in the early hours of the morning, JoAnn Morgan drove into the parking lot at Pad 39a, Cape Canaveral, to oversee the fuelling of the giant Saturn V rocket。 Against the darkness of the ocean behind, the spacecraft was bathed in the light of xenon arc lamps and enveloped in clouds of oxygen venting from the fuel tanks。

1969年7月16日凌晨,摩根(JoAnn Morgan)开车来来卡纳维拉尔角火箭发射基地(Cape Canaveral)39a发射台的停车场,监督给巨大的土星5号火箭注入燃料的工作。背靠漆黑的海洋,航天器沐浴在氙弧灯的灯光中,燃料箱排出的氧气云充满环绕。

“It was an absolutely majestic sight,” says Morgan. “I stood out in the parking lot and watched it for a while because it was just so beautiful.”

摩根说,“绝对是壮观的一幕。我人站在停车场,看了好一会儿,因为场景太美了。”

At 36 storeys high, the Saturn V ranks as one of the greatest technical and engineering achievements of the 20th Century。 Its development was led by Wernher von Braun who, even while building V2 rockets for Hitler, dreamed of building a rocket to carry men to the Moon。

土星5号有36层楼高,是人类在20世纪其中一项最伟大的技术和工程成就。由天才的火箭科学家冯‧布劳恩(Wernher von Braun)牵头研发。冯‧布劳恩甚至在当年为希特勒制造V2火箭的时候,就梦想着造出一枚可以将人送上月球的火箭。

“Not only was he technically competent,” says Jay Honeycutt, a rocket engineer and later senior manager at Nasa, “but he had great leadership skills and a great ability to communicate with government officials who funded the projects.”

美国宇航局的火箭工程师、后来成为高级经理的霍尼卡特(Jay Honeycutt)说,冯‧布劳恩“不仅技术能力超强,而且有卓著的领导才能,很善于跟政府负责这些项目资金的官员打交道。”

Fuelled by liquid oxygen and kerosene, the rocket was made up of multiple stages. The lowest part of the rocket – or first stage – was fitted with five giant F-1 engines. Two further stages – and a total of six further engines – carried it into orbit. Above the engines were the compartment for the lunar lander, and then the service and command module for the three-man crew. The Saturn V was topped with an escape rocket, designed to blast the command module to safety if anything went wrong during launch.

这枚火箭以液态氧和煤油为燃料,由多级推进器组成。最底下部分,或者说第一级火箭,安装了5个巨大的F-1发动机。另外两级火箭推进器,共计有6个发动机,负责将土星5号送入太空轨道。推进器上面是装着登月舱,然后是三名宇航员的服务和指挥舱的隔热层。土星5号的顶部装有一枚逃生火箭,发射过程中若出现任何差池,能将指挥舱送来安全的地方。

“Gee whizz you think, did that thing really fly,” says Honeycutt. “Some hundred metres tall and then that little bitty thing up on the pointy end is all that came back – a pretty remarkable engineering achievement.”

霍尼卡特说,“你想不来那东西真就飞起来了。几百米高,然后尖头上那个小小的东西竟然还能回来地球,实在是非常了不起的工程成就。”

The Moon rocket might have been even larger. Nasa’s original plan suggested developing a rocket called Nova. Fitted with eight F-1 engines, it would carry a larger, single spacecraft capable of landing on the Moon and then returning to Earth.

送人上月球的火箭本来会比土星5号更大。美国宇航局最初的计划是研发一个名叫“新星”(Nova)的火箭,有8个F-1发动机,运载一个更大的能够在月球着陆,然后返回地球的单一航天器。

2: Maximum speed of the crawler transporters, in miles per hour

2:履带式运输车的最大速度(单位:英里/小时)

The Saturn Vs were put together in the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB), a structure so large it even has its own weather system. Engineers then had the challenge of getting the rockets to the launch pad, some five or so kilometres away. After an initial suggestion to float the spacecraft on barges, it was decided to build giant tracked vehicles called crawler-transporters.

土星5号在运载器装配大楼(VAB)组装。这座建筑是个庞然大物,大来有自己的天气系统。组装完备后工程师面临的挑战是,要如何把如此巨大的火箭运送来大约5公里外的发射台。一开始的建议是用驳船将航天器运过去,后来决定建造一种巨大的履带式运输车。

With eight giant tracks – driven by 16 electric motors, powered by two generators – the crawler-transporters are more like ships than vehicles. And, like ships, the drivers are part of a team of operators and engineers that keep the vehicles moving slowly to the launch pad. Very slowly.

履带式运输车有8条巨大的履带,由2台发电机发电,16台马达驱动,行驰与其说是驾车不如说是静水行船。而且,和行船一样,驾驶员也是操作人员和工程师团队的一员,他们负责让运输车缓缓地驶向发射台,速度慢如蜗牛。

“The crawler has the power to go two miles an hour,” says driver Sam Dove。 “However, you really don’t want to get it up to two, especially with a load on it – the most we ever go is one。”

驾驶员达夫(Sam Dove)说,“运输车的马力可每小时走2英里,不过,你真的不想跑来2英里,特别是负载量这么大的情况下,我们最多就跑1英里。”

Although a driver sits in the cab, the heart of the crawler transporter is a control room. “It's really the brains and the nerve centre for the operators here,” says Dove. “The test conductor sets on the second console from the end and controls everything on the crawler.”

虽然驾驶员坐在驾驶室里,但履带式运输车的核心是控制室。达夫说,“控制室真的是操作人员的大脑和神经中枢。测试主管就坐在倒数第二个控制台上,控制着车上的一切。”

During Apollo, it could take up to 16 hours to deliver the spacecraft the few kilometres from the VAB to the launchpad. The time from pad to orbit was just eight minutes.

在阿波罗计划期间,将装载了航天器的土星5号从装配大楼送至发射台需要16个小时,但从发射台来进入轨道则只要8分钟。

35,000,000: Saturn V thrust at lift-off in Newtons

3500万:土星5号升空时的推力(单位:牛顿)

The Saturn V is the most powerful rocket ever successfully flown.

土星5号是有史以来功率最强大的火箭。

“I felt like we were on the point of a needle, a very large needle,” says Frank Borman, the commander of Apollo 8, the first manned flight to the Moon. “I had a feeling of being along for the ride rather than being in control of anything, the noise and vibrations gave you a feeling of enormous power.”

首次载人绕月飞行的阿波罗8号的指挥官博尔曼(Frank Borman)说, “我感觉我们就像位于一根针尖上,这是一根非常巨大的针。我好象被人绑架着去,没有可以控制一切的感受,发射时的噪音和震动给你一种地动山摇的感觉。”

Apollo 8 ranks as one of the most audacious and risky missions in space history. Alongside Borman in the Apollo command module were Jim Lovell and Bill Anders, who gave the endeavour just a 30% chance of success.

阿波罗8号是太空史上最大胆、最危险的任务之一。与博尔曼一起进入阿波罗指挥舱的还有洛弗尔(Jim Lovell)和安德斯(Bill Anders),他们认为成功的几率只有30%。

The mission was considered such a risk because the previous, unmanned, test of the Saturn V – sometimes known as Apollo 6 – had not gone well. “The test flight that we flew right before [Apollo 8] was pretty much a disaster,” says Apollo flight director Gerry Griffin. “Almost everything went wrong.”

之所以认为这项任务如此危险,是因为之前对土星5号(有时被称为阿波罗6号)的无人驾驶测试并不顺利。阿波罗的飞行主管格里芬(Gerry Griffin)说,“我们在阿波罗8号之前进行的试飞几乎是一场灾难,几乎所有方面都出了问题。”

Most seriously, the rocket started to pogo – creating forces on board that would most likely have killed any crew. “We also lost some fuel lines,” adds Griffin, “and the upper stage engine didn’t restart.”

最严复的是,火箭开始上下弹动,这产生的力量有可能杀死宇航员。格里芬还说,“我们也失去了一些燃油管,而且第三级推进器的发动机没能复启。”

Over the next eight months, von Braun’s rocketry team set about solving all the problems, before convincing Nasa management the Saturn V was now safe to fly。

在接下来的8个月里,冯‧布劳恩的火箭团队着手解决所有的问题,然后说服美国宇航局的治理层,土星5号可以安全飞行了。

“It was gutsy on the part of the programme,” says Griffin. “It was also gutsy on the part of those three guys that got in there and rode the first ever Saturn V.”

格里芬说, “项目的这个部分很大胆,那三个人也很勇敢,他们登上土星5号,进行它的首次飞行。”

5: Saturn V upper stages on the Moon

5:土星5号留在月球上的第三级推进器数量

Just nine minutes after launch, the Saturn V had already shed its first and second stages, sending them tumbling away towards the Atlantic Ocean. The third stage (rather confusingly known as the S4B), with its single engine, gave the spacecraft enough speed to reach orbit before shutting down.

发射仅9分钟后,土星5号的第一级和第二级火箭就脱落,掉进大西洋。随后只带一个发动机的第三级(令人不解的是正式称为S4B)点燃推进,给阿波罗航天器有足够的速度来达预定轨道,然后关闭发动机。

Then, after one and a half revolutions of the Earth, the crew relit the S4B’s engine. In a manoeuvre known as Trans Lunar Injection, the rocket thrust the spacecraft out of orbit on a trajectory towards the Moon.

接下来,在绕地球一周半后,宇航员复启S4B的发动机。在一波名为“月球转移轨道射入”( Trans Lunar Injection)的操作中,第三级火箭以抛物线方式将阿波罗航天器抛出绕地轨道,射往月球方向。

After the astronauts shut the engine down for a second time, and with the lunar lander extracted from the casing at the top, the rocket was abandoned. But – because it was travelling at the same speed and in the same direction as the spacecraft – unless the crew changed trajectory, the spent rocket would follow them to the Moon.

在宇航员第二次关闭发动机后,随着阿波罗航天器从火箭顶部弹出,这枚火箭就该寿终正寝了。不过,由于火箭第三级与阿波罗航天器以同样的速度和方向前进,除非宇航员改变其运行轨迹,否则这枚用过的火箭也会跟着他们抵达月球。

For the first few Apollo missions, Nasa’s solution was to send the S4B into orbit around the Sun. And, today, the S4B stages for Apollos 8, 9, 10 and 11 are still orbiting the Sun.  Apollo 12’s upper stage, however, has been recaptured by the Earth’s gravity.

在最初几次阿波罗任务中,美国宇航局的解决方案是将S4B送入绕太阳的轨道。今天,阿波罗8号、9号、10号和11号的S4B级仍在绕太阳运行。不过,阿波罗12号任务的第三级火箭已经被地球引力复新捕捉。

For the remaining missions, Nasa came up with a more imaginative plan.

对于接下来的阿波罗任务,美国宇航局提出了一个更富想像力的计划。

The Apollo Lunar Surface Experiment Package (Alsep), left by the moonwalkers of Apollo 12 onwards, included a seismometer which relayed data to Earth. By smashing the S4B stages into the Moon, geologists could trace the resulting tremors through the lunar rock to help determine its geological composition.

从阿波罗12号开始,登月的阿波罗宇航员都会在月球上留下阿波罗月球地表实验数据包(Alsep),其中包括一个地震仪。这个实验数据包会将收集的月球数据传送回地球。美国宇航局会将用完的三级火箭撞向月球,地质学家可以追踪撞击月岩产生的震动来确定月球的地质构成。

As the missions progressed, and the more stages they crashed, the more data they got back。 The Alseps continued to return data until 1977, when Nasa shut the programme down。

随着任务的连续,坠毁月球的第三级数目增加,传回来的数据也增多。Alseps一直在返回数据,直来1977年,美国宇航局终止了这个项目。

100: Percentage of cloud cover for the Apollo 12 launch

100:阿波罗12号发射时的云层覆盖比

On 14 November 1969, four months after landing on the Moon, Nasa planned to do it again. On board Apollo 12: Pete Conrad, Dick Gordon and Alan Bean.

1969年11月14日,在首次登月四个月后,美国宇航局计划再次登月。阿波罗12号上的宇航员为康拉德(Pete Conrad)、戈登(Dick Gordon)和比恩(Alan Bean)。

There had been a few rain showers that day, as a cold front moved across central Florida but meteorologists gave the go-ahead for launch and the countdown proceeded smoothly.

当天有几场阵雨,冷锋横扫佛罗里达州中部,但气象学家为发射开了绿灯,发射的倒计时也进行得很顺利。

At 36 seconds after launch, as the Saturn V passed through the clouds, the electrical systems in the command module failed.

在发射36秒后,土星5号穿过云层时,指令舱中的电子系统出现故障。

“What the hell was that?” exclaimed Conrad.

康拉德喊道,“那是什么鬼?”

This was Gerry Griffin’s first shift as lead flight director, overseeing mission control.

这是格里芬首次担任首席飞行指挥,负责监督任务控制。

“They had a master caution and warning panel with lights that said what was wrong and Conrad started reading that,” says Griffin. “The whole panel essentially lit up.”

格里芬说, “主警报和其他警告灯亮起,告晓出了问题,康拉德一看,竟然整个外表板的灯都亮了起来。”

As the rocket continued towards orbit, Griffin sought a solution. “This young man from a little college in southeastern Oklahoma named John Aaron, who was about 25 I'd guess, made a call, he said ‘tell him to try SCE to Aux.’”

随着火箭连续向轨道前进,格里芬找来了解决办法。“这个毕业于俄克拉何马州东南部一所小学院的年轻人艾伦(John Aaron),我猜他大概25岁左右,我打了个电话问他,他说‘让他试试把SCE推来Aux(备用电源)上。’”

Griffin had never heard of the switch but asked the Capcom, Gerry Carr, to relay the message to the spacecraft. “Conrad had never heard of the switch either so he said ‘SCE to Aux what the hell is that?’, but Al Bean knew where the switch was, right in front of him.”

格里芬从未听说过这个开关,但他让宇航通讯员卡尔(Gerry Carr)把这个信息转告宇航员。“康拉德也从来没有听说过那个开关,所以他说把SCE推来备用电源是什么鬼东西?但是比恩晓道开关在哪里,因为这个开关就在他前面。”

The switch flicked, the command module came back online。 And once the guidance computers were reset, the crew head for the Moon。

他们按下开关,指令舱复原了工作。导航运算机复置后,宇航员就飞往月球。

When engineers later analysed the launch, they discovered the rocket had generated its own lightning, the exhaust creating a circuit between charged particles in the clouds and the ground. Fortunately, the lightning didn’t affect the rocket’s separate computer which, throughout the drama, kept the spacecraft on track.

工程师们后来分析这次火箭发射,发觉火箭自己生成了闪电,发射产生的废气在云层和地面的带电粒子之间形成了一个电路。幸运的是,那次闪电并没有影响火箭的独立运算机,在整起事件中,运算机一直保持着航天器的正常运行。

“It was really funny to listen to the crew after that,” says Griffin. “They get giggly, it was like a near accident in an auto… it was funny almost all the way to orbit.”

格里芬说,“听宇航员在那之后的对话真的很有意思,他们咯咯地笑,就像一辆汽车差点出了车祸而幸存......几乎一直来进入轨道,都很欢乐。”

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