Nearly 50 years since the first launch of the remarkable Saturn V and the start of the Apollo 4 mission, this sleek, slender and astonishingly powerful rocket remains perhaps one of the most enduring icons of the early space age.
To commemorate this remarkable feat of engineering, Haynes is this month launching the NASA Saturn V Owners’ Workshop Manual. Written by David Woods, who also curates the Apollo Flight Journal for NASA, this manual uses the unique Haynes illustrated style to explain how the Saturn V was designed, built and operated.
Not only did the Saturn V rocket repeatedly take humans to the Moon, it carried out its task reliably and with spellbinding and impressive style. Its visceral roar could be heard across the state of Florida every time it launched; an unforgettable experience for the millions who witnessed it.
With an impressive lift capacity of 140 tonnes to low Earth orbit, the Saturn V would still be able to put more mass into space when compared with the NASA Space Launch System (SLS) rocket currently scheduled to make its first unmanned test flight in 2018 which will have a predicted lift capacity of 130 tonnes.
Furthermore, at launch this behemoth weighed as much as a naval destroyer, and the five engines of its first stage generated a combined power as great as the UK’s peak electricity consumption. The propellant pump alone in each of these engines generated 53,000 brake-horsepower.
With the aid of numerous photographs and technical illustrations throughout, many from the NASA archives, the fascinating story of the NASA Saturn V is brought to life and comprises a bottom-to-top celebration of the engineering behind the vehicle. Featuring reworked NASA diagrams that use colour to clarify the operation of everything from the guidance system to the fuel valves, the manual provides clear explanations of all its major systems.
Talking about the manual, author David Woods commented: “Unlike many publications that focus on the Apollo programme but avoid discussions on the engineering behind the venture, this book places the machine – the Saturn V – at centre stage and revels in its details. This in turn makes the engineering itself the story.
“Space enthusiasts who want to know more about how the iconic rocket worked will find that this accessible manual provides a wealth of new facts and insight into very large scale rocket design. It also provides a conceptual grounding in basic rocket science and engineering without going into the mathematics.”
David Woods also co-wrote the Haynes ApolloLuna Rover Manual and the NASA Gemini Manual.
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Haynes Publishing has been the world's leading publisher of illustrated workshop car manuals and motorcycle manuals since 1965. In that time Haynes has evolved and so have its Manuals to now include a wide range of automotive, sport, leisure, military and lifestyle subjects. Haynes also has licenses to publish Manuals with NASA, the Royal Navy, the Royal Air Force, Star Wars, Star Trek and others.
Haynes publishing also offers its more recent car and motorcycle manuals through online subscription, Manuals Online was launched in 2010 and offers colour imagery, video and is accessible through computer or tablet via an internet connection.