Thursday, June 7, 2012

SPACE, THE FINAL FRONTIER

Brigham City, UT  H 74  L 49

Yesterday was a long travel day for us – 200 miles. I know for a lot of people this is a drop in the bucket but for us it’s about 50 miles too far. However, I had a destination in mind and I knew we had to drive through Salt Lake City and suburbs.

Utah drivers seem to have a death wish. Then you have all the road construction (I truly don’t believe they are ever going to finish I-15 through this area). All-in-all, it was a very long day before we arrived at the Golden Spike RV Park in Brigham City.

ROCKET GARDEN, PROMONTORY, UT

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This morning we drove out to the ATK Thiokol Rocket Display. ATK is a premier aerospace and defense company which manufactures rocket propulsion systems and strategic missiles in Utah’s Promontory Mountains. ATK also manufactured the solid rocket booster (SBR) for the Space Shuttle. After the SBRs were retrieved from the ocean following a launch, they were transported to ATK (formerly Thiokol) in Utah for refurbishing. I’m not sure how ATK will be contributing to the space program now that NASA is basically out of the shuttle program. But they still continue to manufacture missiles for the military.

IMG_4768 This is definitely a secure area but they have a display of 39 rockets and rocket parts in front of their building which is open to the public. They have a really good brochure inside the front door that has a diagram of the entire display and an explanation of each one. There are also signs at each display.

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One display is a Space Shuttle Booster Separation Motor which can travel through the atmosphere at 3,094 miles per hour and altitudes of 24 nautical miles. This rocket motor is 149 feet long and is the only booster capable of recovery and reuse. They are used during the first 122 seconds of the shuttle flight.

IMG_4757 You can also see the TX-486 Patriot missile, noted as the US Army’s most advanced surface-to-surface defense system. More historic are the TX-14 Big B, known as “The Klunker” – designed in 1950 for the US Army Ballistic Missile Agency as a test vehicle for high performance propellants and insulated materials – and the TX-10, the 1950s prototype solid propellant rocket motor for the US Army’s surface-to-surface Lacrosse missile that was developed for use against tanks and bunkers.

IMG_4766 There is also a Minuteman 1 three-stage missile which has a range of greater than 6,000 nautical miles.

I don’t know or understand much about rockets but I thoroughly enjoyed our stroll through the Rocket Garden. I am amazed at the minds that can develop this kind of technology.

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16 comments:

  1. I don't think I have ever commented here. I am really enjoying your blog. So many of the places you write about we have visited, but I don't think we have been to Utah. Your pictures are beautiful. We live in southern West Virginia, so if you're ever in our part of the country, we'd love to visit...

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  2. We've been to the location of the Golden Spike a couple times but I didn't know about the space shuttle location. I would have really enjoyed that!! Thanks for passing it along.

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  3. Interesting place, we stopped there after the Golden spike site.

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  4. Interesting site, thanks for the info.

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  5. Hi Sandie....been to Salt LAKE many, many times, never gone to the Rocket Garden....perhaps next time. BTW......we HAVE NEVER been through Salt Lake when the Freeway was NOT torn apart. I think they are forever repairing that thing.

    xo

    Jo

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  6. That was an interesting post. All brand new information to me. We have never been to Utah but we really want to visit all the beautiful parks they have there.

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  7. Thanks for the tour! We once toured the Kennedy Space Center years and years ago. This place looked a lot more interesting!

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~
    Karen and Steve
    (Our Blog) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard
    http://kareninthewoods-kareninthewoods.blogspot.com

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  8. I can't believe we never knew about this. We'll have to go up Bill's worst road in America again to see this.

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  9. SLC drivers are suicidal!!! Remember driving through there one winter me (Janna) driving the motorhome in a raging snowstorm--people were spinning out, going in the median, crazy drivers as if they had never seen snow before!! You are getting closer!!

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  10. An interesting article here on Peenemuende, (North Germany, close to Poland) for a little history on the subject.
    here

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  11. What an interesting place. I never knew it existed but now Salt Lake City has another place to visit other than Tabernacle Square!

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  12. Thanks for the information! I have pinned it on Pinterest.

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  13. Crazy drivers + road construction = not a good drive.
    Paul would LOVE this place. Another one for our Utah trip. Thanks.

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  14. Look at that sunshine. Oh my!

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  15. If you think SLC drivers are suicidal, you haven't been to Atlanta, Sandie! I'm trying to figure out if you're anywhere near Provo. I don't have a map at had and my sense of direction has been missing for years along with some of my memory. If you are headed that way, though, think about taking the drive up to Timpanagos Caves. It's a beautiful drive--you pass Sundance (don't see anything Robert Redford), but the ride up is beautiful. I wouldn't recommend actually going in the caves until Jim gets his full breathing capacity back--I can't do it, but the ride up, alone, is worth the trip. Now, I'll find out you're going in the opposite direction! LOL

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  16. Thanks for the information ,i have now on my bucket list

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Thanks for visiting today. I look forward to reading your comments. Have a beautiful day.