Do The Astro!

ASTRO — a manned reusable spacecraft concept developed by Douglas Aircraft.

PLAN AND ELEVATION views of ASTRO A2 vehicle. Note booster vehicle attachment at aft end.

Missiles and Rockets, September 3, 1962

Douglas Astro at Astronautix

Image credit: Douglas

Image source: Internet Archive

By Jove!

Jupiter Lunar Landing

From one of Jupiter’s 12 moons, earth astronauts gaze on this impressive, but bleak, view of the 86,900 mile-diameter planet. More than 316 times the mass of the Earth, Jupiter is seven times further from the sun than Earth; would require voyage of one to two months to reach at velocity of one million feet per second. Max Hunter, Douglas Aircraft Company engineer predicts economically feasible trips to Jupiter will be made through development of nuclear thrust spaceship engines. 

Douglas Aircraft Company, Inc. General Offices, Santa Monica, Calif.

Image credit: Douglas Aircraft Company

Image source: Numbers Station

Ithacus Explained

  1. Ithacus troop transport launched from a nuclear carrier;
  2. Troops disembark from Ithacus rocket at their destination halfway across the world;
  3. After transfer from the interior, empty vehicle is taken by barge to a convenient coastal spaceport for reconditioning and relaunch.

Text from Frontiers of Space by Philip Bono & Kenneth Gatland, 1969

Ithacus at Astronautix

Philip Bono at Astronautix

Image credit: Douglas

Image source: Philip Bono Collection

Inside Deimos

ROMBUS

Configuration for a manned Mars mission (Project Deimos).

  1. Six man Mars landing capsule;
  2. Pressurized tunnel;
  3. Toroidal living compartment;
  4. Liquid hydrogen tanks (8);
  5. Spherical liquid oxygen tank
  6. Booster centerbody.

Project Deimos – Mars Landing Module

  1. Earth-return capsule;
  2. Command centre and pressurized tunnel;
  3. Separation joint, for return to Mars orbit;
  4. Mars landing propellant tanks(6);
  5. Ground access hatch;
  6. Mars-launch platform;
  7. Payload and power supply equipment compartment;
  8. Mars-launch propellant tank;
  9. Landing and take-off rocket motor;
  10. Jettisonable closure panel;
  11. Mars-entry heat shield;
  12. Extensible landing gear(4);
  13. Altitude-control system quads (4).

Text from Frontiers of Space by Philip Bono & Kenneth Gatland, 1969

Project Deimos at Astronautix

Philip Bono at Astronautix

Image credit: Douglas

Image source: Numbers Station

Pegasus Cutaway & Plan

Pegasus Intercontinental Passenger Rocket

  1. Forward pressure dome;
  2. Two-man crew compartment;
  3. Re-entry stabilization fines (2);
  4. Cargo compartment;
  5. Aft pressure dome;
  6. Pressurized cabin for passengers (170);
  7. Deck structure (4) with passenger couches (43 each).

Pegasus during atmospheric re-entry uses the LH2-cooled plug nozzle as a heat shield. The ballistic transport would convey 172 passengers and freight 7,456 miles (12,000 km.) in 39 min. without exceeding an acceleration of 3g during ascent or re-entry. At the arrival spaceport it would hover on rocket thrust during a soft landing in the vertical attitude.

Pegasus Passenger Compartment

  1. Four-level passenger access doors (3);
  2. Stairways (2) connecting four passenger decks;
  3. Double-wall acoustic damping structure;
  4. Luggage racks (9);
  5. Re-entry stabilization fins (2).

Text from Frontiers of Space by Philip Bono & Kenneth Gatland, 1969

Pegasus at Astronautix

Image credit: Douglas / Blandford Press

Image source(s):

Numbers Station

SDASM Archives

Selena Storyboard

How re-usable ROMBUS-type launch vehicles can be applied to construction of a temporary lunar base (Project Selena).

  1. Vehicle en route for the Moon is refuelled in Earth Orbit;
  2. Soft-lands on the Moon with lunar base components;
  3. Pressurized moon-tractor hauls hydrogen tanks adapted for human habitation to assembly site;
  4. The lunar base is ready for occupation.

Text from Frontiers of Space by Philip Bono & Kenneth Gatland, 1969

Frontiers of Space is peppered with artwork from Douglas, including paintings by Don Charles and James Finnell. In the book, this section was illustrated with (pretty poor) knock-offs. Why? Who knows? These were the masters.

Project Selena at Astronautix

Philip Bono at Astronautix

Image credit: Douglas

Image source: Philip Bono Collection

Deimos Storyboard

Mission to Mars (Project Deimos)

  1. Hydrogen tanks jettison as ROMBUS spaceship accelerates from Earth-orbit;
  2. Two hydrogen tanks jettison after retro-thrust into Mars orbit. Mars Landing Module separates from ROMBUS parent above the cratered deserts;
  3. After soft-landing, astronauts begin exploration setting out research equipment and taking meteorological soundings;
  4. Ascent stage of Mars Landing Module returns astronauts to ROMBUS parent in Martian orbit for return to Earth.

Text from Frontiers of Space by Philip Bono & Kenneth Gatland, 1969

Project Deimos at Astronautix

Philip Bono at Astronautix

Image credit: Douglas

Image source: SDASM Archives

Don Charles

Project Deimos at Astronautix

Philip Bono at Astronautix

Image credit: Douglas

Image source: SDASM Archives