Vehicle Assembly Building

2009 Kennedy Space Center Visit


Various pieces of space hardware and infrastructure at Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

Ares-1X

06 Aug 2009 37
The upper stage simulator and spacecraft/LAS simulator for the upcoming Ares-1X test flight. Both components are dummy units, and won't actually perform during the test.

Big Door

06 Aug 2009 36
The inside of one of the giant garage doors into the VAB.

Belly

06 Aug 2009 40
The underside of one of the MLPs, in this case the one on which the Ares-1X vehicle is being stacked.

Passage

06 Aug 2009 52
The passage between the storage/staging high bay and the transfer aisle in the VAB. The passage is used to transfer components (Saturn stages, nowadays Orbiters, ETs, and SRB segments) from the transfer aisle into the high bay, by lifting them up and over the wall using a 175-ton bridge crane.

High Bay

06 Aug 2009 28
Looking straight up in the safe haven high bay.

Safe Haven Stands

06 Aug 2009 42
Two of the stands for parking an MLP, in the "safe haven" high bay in the VAB. Note the similar layout but different appearance of these, vs. the Apollo-vintage versions in other photos.

Passage

06 Aug 2009 31
A bridge crane seen through the passage in the wall between the safe haven highbay and the transfer aisle.

New MLP

06 Aug 2009 27
Construction of the new mobile launch platform and launch umbilical tower for Constellation/Ares-I, next to OPF-3 at the VAB.

Bunker

06 Aug 2009 62
An armored personnel carrier and one of the shelters for the crew, at the end of the slide wires.

Tunnels

06 Aug 2009 46
Apparently, these are escape tunnels running to the "rubber room" under the pad, a room with rubber-isolated seats where the crew could take shelter in the event of a catastrophic accident at the pad (an alternative to the slide wire baskets, which terminate just above these doors).

Discovery

06 Aug 2009 39
An angle you almost never see.

Discovery

06 Aug 2009 45
From the "back" side of the pad, looking into the SRB side of the flame trench.

Discovery

06 Aug 2009 53
From the "back" side of the pad, looking into the SRB side of the flame trench.

Discovery

06 Aug 2009 47
Note the high-pressure gas bottles in the bunker built into the side of the pad.

Cone and Ogive

06 Aug 2009 32
The tops of the port SRB and the External Tank.

White Room

06 Aug 2009 44
The white room arm and white room from above.

Stack

06 Aug 2009 55
Discovery on the launch pad

Structure

06 Aug 2009 64
Looking down into the rotating service structure.

183 items in total