Author Topic: KH-11 KENNEN  (Read 56556 times)

Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #280 on: 04/19/2017 08:42 PM »
I have a hard time trying to wrap my head around that decision.  I mean why bother going to the effort photographing STS-1?  It was not like anything could've been done in their situation.  STS-107 was a completely different story.  There was a vehicle being stacked in the VAB.  Engineers looked at the footage saying "Woah!" "Ouch!" "We need to look at this!" and management had no concerns to even try and look at the vulnerable RCC panels?

In 2003 I was an investigator on the Columbia Accident Investigation Board. I was not involved in that part of the investigation, but I encourage you to read the final report for more information. I think the key thing to understand is that by 2003 the shuttle was considered to be an "operational" program that no longer really contained surprises. As a result, people involved in the shuttle program didn't ask deep questions. In particular, they had long decided that foam was not a safety issue, it was a maintenance issue, and they considered all foam impacts in that context. And nobody thought that foam could punch a hole in RCC, because they thought that foam was something light and non-dense, and they could not wrap their head around what it could do when traveling at 500 miles per hour.

I don't want to get off-track on this subject, which is why I think you need to go look at the report.
« Last Edit: 04/19/2017 08:45 PM by Blackstar »

Offline Star One

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #281 on: 04/19/2017 08:52 PM »
I wonder if every Shuttle flight underwent KH-11 examination after Columbia?

Offline saturnapollo

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #282 on: 04/19/2017 09:13 PM »
Quite apart from the difficulty in doing so, there was no need as every flight (apart from the last HST servicing mission) went to the ISS and the crew aboard the ISS photographed it every which way during a back flip manoeuver. In addition the shuttle carried the Orbiter Boom Sensor System which was used after launch and prior to landing to do extreme closeup sensor sweeps of the insulation/tiles.

Keith

Offline WallE

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #283 on: 04/20/2017 06:13 AM »
In 2003 I was an investigator on the Columbia Accident Investigation Board. I was not involved in that part of the investigation, but I encourage you to read the final report for more information. I think the key thing to understand is that by 2003 the shuttle was considered to be an "operational" program that no longer really contained surprises. As a result, people involved in the shuttle program didn't ask deep questions. In particular, they had long decided that foam was not a safety issue, it was a maintenance issue, and they considered all foam impacts in that context. And nobody thought that foam could punch a hole in RCC, because they thought that foam was something light and non-dense, and they could not wrap their head around what it could do when traveling at 500 miles per hour.

That piece of foam was about the size of a suitcase. Not exactly a tiny object, and when it's going at 500 mph, the thing is going to do some damage.

Though in all fairness, Challenger was probably a more avoidable accident since there had been clear and ample warning about SRB burn-through for a couple of years and anyone could have figured out the consequences of that, while a problem with loose foam would have seemed almost insignificant until it was too late.

Offline saturnapollo

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #284 on: 04/20/2017 09:26 AM »
Quote
and when it's going at 500 mph, the thing is going to do some damage.

As I pointed out previously it wasn't going at 500mph, the shuttle was. The foam relatively speaking stopped moving.

Keith

Offline Star One

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #285 on: 04/20/2017 09:56 AM »
Quite apart from the difficulty in doing so, there was no need as every flight (apart from the last HST servicing mission) went to the ISS and the crew aboard the ISS photographed it every which way during a back flip manoeuver. In addition the shuttle carried the Orbiter Boom Sensor System which was used after launch and prior to landing to do extreme closeup sensor sweeps of the insulation/tiles.

Keith

This was all a long time ago to me so I have to confess that I had forgotten most of this stuff. :)

Offline WallE

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #286 on: 04/20/2017 10:27 PM »
As I pointed out previously it wasn't going at 500mph, the shuttle was. The foam relatively speaking stopped moving.

Ok, I misread that. Sorry. Point still stands. Any collision at 500 mph is going to break stuff.

Offline jcm

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #287 on: 04/20/2017 11:16 PM »
As I pointed out previously it wasn't going at 500mph, the shuttle was. The foam relatively speaking stopped moving.

Ok, I misread that. Sorry. Point still stands. Any collision at 500 mph is going to break stuff.

This was a meaningless correction anyway - velocity is a relative quantity.
The foam was going at 500 mph in the rest frame of the Shuttle.
-----------------------------

Jonathan McDowell
http://planet4589.org

Offline WallE

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #288 on: 04/20/2017 11:34 PM »
This was a meaningless correction anyway - velocity is a relative quantity. The foam was going at 500 mph in the rest frame of the Shuttle.

The foam was decelerating while the orbiter was accelerating. I get what you mean. It wasn't hitting a static object at a constant 500 mph velocity, it was hitting a moving object that was gaining velocity.

Offline saturnapollo

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #289 on: 04/21/2017 12:07 AM »
Quote
This was a meaningless correction anyway - velocity is a relative quantity.

That is why I said "relatively speaking" I never said it was stationary.

Offline Hog

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #290 on: 04/24/2017 04:29 PM »
I again lost another post just as my log in session expired, so I will again type out my post in abbreviated form.

From page 60 of the CAIB.  I originally made some off the cuff,from memory guesstimates of 1200mph and 700mph leaving a closing speed of 500mph at impact, but after going back to the CAIB, I found out that while the 500mph relative velocity of the foam and the RCC was close, the actual relative velocity was 545mph

THE ORBITER “RAN INTO” THE FOAM
“How could a lightweight piece of foam travel so fast and hit the wing at 545 miles per hour?”
Just prior to separating from the External Tank, the foam was traveling with the Shuttle stack at about 1,568 mph (2,300 feet per second). Visual evidence shows that the foam debris impacted the wing approximately 0.161 seconds after separating from the External Tank. In that time, the velocity of the foam debris slowed from 1,568 mph to about 1,022 mph (1,500 feet per second). Therefore, the Orbiter hit the foam with a relative velocity of about 545 mph (800 feet per second). In essence, the foam debris slowed down and the Orbiter did not, so the Orbiter ran into the foam. The foam slowed down rapidly because such low-density objects have low ballistic coefficients, which means their speed rapidly decreases when they lose their means of propulsion
.

From some quick calculation I found out that the Stack moved about 0.0701 miles  370 feet in the 0.161 seconds between the left bipod-ramp liberation event and the impact event with the left winds RCC.(simplifying the calcs by assuming the stack velocity was constant at 1568mph, which it was NOT-as there were 3 RS-25Ds and 2,  4 segment SRBs at work causing acceleration during the 0.161 seconds or approx. 370 feet.  In that 0.161 seconds/370feet of the stacks voyage, the foam decreased from a velocity of 1,568mph(2300fps) down to 1022mph(1500fps) for a "relative velocity" of 545 mph(800fps)-relative to the piece of foam and the leading edge of the Orbiters left wing.

During the mission, STS-107, it was estimated that the foam had a Min. volume of 400 cubic inches, and a Mx. volume of 1920 cubic inches for a Best Estimated Volume of 1200cubic inches.
Estimations performed after STS-107 estimated that the foam had a Minimum Volume of 1026ci and a Mx. Volume of 1239 cubic inches with a Best Estimated Volume of again 1,200 cubic Inches.
Numbers from page 61 of the CAIB.

All of the above numbers are very far from the explanations I was hearing from the media involving a Styrofoam cooler blowing out of the back of your pickup truck and hitting the windshield of the vehicle driving behind. Even at the worse case scenario velocities of 70mph, nothing exciting is going to happen.  I heard it a lot, but I always hated that analogy of "the foam" issue.

CAIB page 166
Summary: Mission Management Decision Making
Discovery and Initial Analysis of Debris Strike
In the course of examining film and video images of Columbiaʼs ascent, the Intercenter Photo Working Group identified, on the day after launch, a large debris strike to the leading edge of Columbiaʼs left wing. Alarmed at seeing so severe a hit so late in ascent, and at not having a clear view of damage the strike might have caused, Intercenter Photo Working Group members alerted senior Program managers by phone and sent a digitized clip of the strike to hundreds of NASA personnel via e-mail. These actions initiated a contingency plan that brought together an interdisciplinary group of experts from NASA, Boeing, and the United Space Alliance to analyze the strike. So concerned were Intercenter Photo Working Group personnel that on the day they discovered the debris strike, they tapped their Chair, Bob Page, to see through a request to image the left wing with Department of Defense assets in anticipation of analysts needing these images to better determine potential damage. By the Boardʼs count, this would be the first of three requests to secure imagery of Columbia on-orbit during the 16-day mission.

Missed Opportunities

3. Flight Day 6. NASA and National Imagery and Mapping Agency personnel discuss possible request for imagery. No action taken.
4. Flight Day 7. Wayne Hale phones Department of Defense representative, who begins identifying imaging assets, only to be stopped per Linda Hamʼs orders.

Damage from foam strikes was underestimated, while the resiliency of Reinforced Carbon-Carbon(RCC) to being struck was overestimated.  When it came time to address concerns about the left wings leading edge possibly being damaged, the entire technological prowess of NASA and the United States as a whole was neutered by the single action of a pen which cancelled any possibility of imaging support for STS-107 Columbia.
This is esp. frustrating since one of the people who was interested in seeking imagery, or at least attempting to ascertain exactly what kind if any, additional imagery assets might be available to the team. This person from March 1988 to January 2003, served as a flight director in Mission Control for forty-one Space Shuttle missions and also as Deputy Chief of the Flight Director Office for Shuttle Operations from 2001 to January 2003 and as of Feb 1, 2003 was the Launch Integration Manager of the Space Shuttle Program as he had made the move to Florida, then  6 months later in July 2003 he became deputy manager of the program, moving up to manager in September 2005.  It should be noted that this person I am referring to had a Security Clearance, which should have aid3ed in the flow of information regarding any queries/responses regarding imagery or possible imagery from any sort of classified asset such as a possible picture from a KH-11 satellite, or other satellite, or other land based imagery assets.

CAIB page 152-153

Flight Day Seven, Wednesday, January 22, 2003
Conversations and log entries on Flight Day Seven document how three requests for images
(Bob Page to Wayne Hale, Bob White to Lambert Austin, and Rodney Rocha to Paul Shack)
were ultimately dismissed by the Mission Management Team, and how the order to halt those
requests was then interpreted by the Debris Assessment Team as a direct and fi nal denial of their
request for imagery.
MISSED OPPORTUNITY 4
On the morning of Flight Day Seven, Wayne Hale responded to the earlier Flight Day Two re-
quest from Bob Page and a call from Lambert Austin on Flight Day Five, during which Austin
mentioned that “some analysts” from the Debris Assessment Team were interested in getting
imagery. Hale called a Department of Defense representative at Kennedy Space Center (who
was not the designated Department of Defense offi cial for coordinating imagery requests) and
asked that the military start the planning process for imaging Columbia on orbit.
Within an hour, the Defense Department representative at NASA contacted U.S. Strategic
Command (USSTRATCOM) at Coloradoʼs Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station and asked
what it would take to get imagery of Columbia on orbit. (This call was similar to Austinʼs call
to the Department of Defense Manned Space Flight Support Office in that the caller character-
ized it as “information gathering” rather than a request for action.) A representative from the
USSTRATCOM Plans Offi ce initiated actions to identify ground-based and other imaging as-
sets that could execute the request.
Haleʼs earlier call to the Defense Department representative at Kennedy Space Center was
placed without authorization from Mission Management Team Chair Linda Ham. Also, the call
was made to a Department of Defense Representative who was not the designated liaison for
handling such requests. In order to initiate the imagery request through offi cial channels, Hale
also called Phil Engelauf at the Mission Operations Directorate, told him he had started Defense
Department action, and asked if Engelauf could have the Flight Dynamics Offi cer at Johnson
Space Center make an official request to the Cheyenne Mountain Operations Center. Engelauf
started to comply with Haleʼs request.
After the Department of Defense representatives were called, Lambert Austin telephoned Linda Ham to inform her about the imagery requests that he and Hale had initiated. Austin also told Wayne Hale that he had asked Lieutenant Colonel Lee at the Department of Defense Manned Space Flight Support Office about what actions were necessary to get on-orbit imagery.


The actual physical process for aiming a KH-11 satellite to image select point on the Earths surface must be quite complex, thus aiming a KH-11 satellite to image the leading edge of the Orbiters leading edge of the left wing wouldn't make anything easier.
Was such a KH-11 shot even possible?  Those pictures would have been highly interesting for sure.

A MMT member was quoted as saying that previous imaging lacked the resolution to be of any help, so any additional imaging would be of no help. In addition, there was nothing that could be done, so the issue of foam damage to the wing was closed.


We all remember these pictures of Columbia during STS-107.  The first taken after the de-orbit burn at EI(Entry Interface)+795 seconds by scientists at the Air Force Starfire Optical Range at Kirtland Air Force Base, and the 2nd taken the U.S. Air Force Maui Optical and Supercomputing Site on January 28.
Paul

Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #291 on: 05/22/2017 09:29 PM »
http://www.thespacereview.com/article/3245/1

Piecing the puzzle by piercing the veil: The declassification of KENNEN
by Joseph T. Page II
Monday, May 22, 2017


One of the (c)oldest of Cold Warriors is finally coming out... presumably. Recent declassifications from the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) and Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) have revealed the latest BYEMAN codename for a long-held “open secret,” the first electrooptical imaging (EOI) satellite. Known in open press as the KH-11, the satellite’s name was KENNEN.

For those in the know, mention of this name in open press outside cleared facilities immediately gives way to the intelligence community’s poker face. “I have no idea what you are talking about,” or “I can neither confirm nor deny,” were two oft-heard phrases coming from the defense and intelligence establishments when asked by reporters or industry analysts about the KH-11 and its capabilities. In contrast, space aficionados probably didn’t blink at this release, since the name was leaked decades ago, and covered in William Burrow’s Deep Black.

However, release of the name now, after minor facts about the system were revealed (inside the 2012 NRO Review and Redaction Guide), are strong indications that something “big” is about to happen.


Offline Star One

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KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #292 on: 05/22/2017 09:49 PM »
Well it's a pretty venerable system and electrooptical reconnaissance is in some ways run of the mill these days.
« Last Edit: 05/22/2017 09:49 PM by Star One »

Offline hoku

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #293 on: 05/22/2017 10:53 PM »
http://www.thespacereview.com/article/3245/1

Piecing the puzzle by piercing the veil: The declassification of KENNEN
by Joseph T. Page II
Monday, May 22, 2017


One of the (c)oldest of Cold Warriors is finally coming out... presumably. Recent declassifications from the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) and Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) have revealed the latest BYEMAN codename for a long-held “open secret,” the first electrooptical imaging (EOI) satellite. Known in open press as the KH-11, the satellite’s name was KENNEN.

...

However, release of the name now, after minor facts about the system were revealed (inside the 2012 NRO Review and Redaction Guide), are strong indications that something “big” is about to happen.

Nice research, though Joseph could have learned about "KENNEN" and the CIA/CREST release already five years ago by reading the first page of this thread with "Sherlock" Blackstar's deduction based on the index page of the "The GAMBIT story", followed by the comment on the occurrences "KENNEN" in the CREST database:
https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=29545.msg946484#msg946484
(starting to cite myself ...  ;))

Maybe we shouldn't get too excited with expectations of a big declassification. Time will tell...

Offline Blackstar

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #294 on: 05/23/2017 01:50 AM »
The document about the origins of the KENNEN name was released in response to a FOIA by Jeffrey Richelson. It was also included in the batch covering the quarter during which it was released. I would not assume that further declassification of the program is imminent. It could happen, but these document releases seem much more random than intentional.

Offline Archibald

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #295 on: 05/23/2017 05:53 PM »
So much addo about nothing, and the KH-11 remains classified ? meh.

Online kevin-rf

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Re: KH-11 KENNEN
« Reply #296 on: 05/24/2017 01:37 AM »
So much addo about nothing, and the KH-11 remains classified ? meh.
Well in other news today, The reports of U-2s' death are greatly exaggerated.

Current admin's budget having the retirement of the U-2s and A-10 being postponed indefinitely. (Articles in all your favorite news sources)
I just saw some idiot at the gym put a water bottle in the pringles holder on the treadmill.

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