Author Topic: Manufacturing techniques and materials used in Project Apollo  (Read 3314 times)

Offline koennecke

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Gday guys! As an engineer involved in manufacturing that involves high end machining and welding, I am in awe of, and would like to know more about the materials and processes involved in the manufacturing of  components for the Apollo project. For instance, the F-1 motor, particularly, the brazing.
For that matter, likewise with the fabrication of the command module structure. I presume a lot of Al was used. What alloys? What welding methods? What sort of rivets? All that sort of stuff.
I'm sure plenty here will point me in the right direction.
Thanks in anticipation,
Mark
Adelaide South Australia

Offline Hoonte

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Offline Apolloman

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Gday guys! As an engineer involved in manufacturing that involves high end machining and welding, I am in awe of, and would like to know more about the materials and processes involved in the manufacturing of  components for the Apollo project. For instance, the F-1 motor, particularly, the brazing.
For that matter, likewise with the fabrication of the command module structure. I presume a lot of Al was used. What alloys? What welding methods? What sort of rivets? All that sort of stuff.
I'm sure plenty here will point me in the right direction.
Thanks in anticipation,
Mark


Hello koennecke... Cool your question, I'll try to answer them correctly (I am sorry, but I am French)

For the Command Module structure:

Composition of the structure:
The interior structure is a semi-monocoque aluminum.
It is designed to maintain a pressure of 5 psi of pure oxygen with a ratio of loss than 90.72 grams per hour and having a pressure limit of 8 psi and a maximum pressure of 12 psi.

The internal structure consists of two main sets, some forward and AFT.

The composition of the semi-monocoque structure, incorporating pieces of full frame whose function is to spread the load points to the walls of the latter who are the last bearing portions (they also delineate the various boxes in equipment bays ).

The elements of the structure are machined aluminum, while the walls are being built in so-called "sandwich" structure of honeycomb aluminum fit (collage) between 2 sheets of the same metal.
The internal aluminum sheets are glued to one side the honeycomb, and the other welded them and the frame.

Good to know: The aluminium honeycomb used for the interior of the CM is 40% stronger and 40% lighter than regular aluminum.

The entire AFT:
It consists of the bulkhead and rear side wall (pregnant contour).
Elements (profiled in full) which form the rear are:

-- A ring full machined (aluminum), which form the back edge of the inner structure.
-- 9 stringers located on the rear side wall.

7 stringers are welded on the inside, and two are assembled (collage) between the inner leaves and outer leaves forming the rear side wall.
The stringers are located in positions to allocate concentrations effort to even the surface (bulkhead) from the rear.
6 of 9 stringers in the place coincide with the six points of support on the Command Module.
Located in the zones 50 °, 60 ° and 70 ° and are opposed diamétricalement.
They show the position of the six pressure points connecting the command module of the service module.
Three of the six pressure points are also designed as fastening tension between the Command Module and Service Module.
The location holding the Command Module on the Service Module is made of stainless steel is a structural link between these three stringers and structure of the service module.

The whole forward:
It is composed of a side wall before, a substantive ahead (ceiling), a cylinder access front and the forward hatch, before all the pieces includes full frame following :

-- 4 stringers support tower rescue. They dominate stringers support in the form of a hockey stick, coinciding with a party in line with taking the side wall before.
They are located approximately 90 degrees, leaving lines y and z.
-- Ring in the middle is located on the aft side wall before.
This is a ring of two pieces consisting of a section of 90 degrees between the two stringers senior support and a section of 270 ° complete the ring.
-- 4 stringers cylinder access before. These stringers coincide with locations of stringers support the tower.
-- A full ring on the front cylinder access before.
This ring-shaped frame for the hatch before.

To sum up (in outline):
-- Once, to the forward and AFT internal pre-assembled and welded them, the pression hull, thus obtained is covered with a "mesh" (structure honeycomb aluminum) and glued to the latter.
Finally thick exterior (smooth sheet aluminum, pasted them), which is also pasted on the honeycomb.

The internal pressurized compartment has different thicknesses:
-- Aft pressure bulkhead to a thickness of 3,809 cm.
-- The side wall (contour) back is 1,904 cm thick.

-- The side wall before, is 2,285 cm thick.
-- The bulkhead prior to a thickness of 1,904 cm.
-- Cylinder access before, when it is 0,634 cm.








I hope that you can understand me
« Last Edit: 06/03/2008 04:53 PM by Apolloman »
Paul Cultrera
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consacré au programme Apollo.

Le savoir est un trésor à partager avec tout le monde...

Offline Jim

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He wasn't asking how the CM was assembled but what were the processes used, like what were the adhesives, rivet and weld types used
« Last Edit: 06/03/2008 05:03 PM by Jim »

Offline Apolloman

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He wasn't asking how the CM was assembled but what were the processes used, like what were the adhesives, rivet and weld types used

Oups sorry...

Pression hull  weld type MIG Aluminium
a "mesh" (structure honeycomb aluminum) on pression hull with double-sided adhesive (HT-424?? may be the same as for the heat shield)

To my knowledge No rivet
Paul Cultrera
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Le savoir est un trésor à partager avec tout le monde...

Offline koennecke

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Jim, that's ok....it's all good stuff! Assembly techniques as well!
So, what of the Aluminium alloys? 6000 series? 7000? I would tend to think any welded structure would be 6000 or even 5000 series due to weldability. 7000 is pretty much non weldable. The use of honeycomb is interesting. Was Nomex honeycomb around then?
So the bulkhead structures......I presume they would have been Al as well, machined from solid (as in billet?). That being the case, were these pretty much milled manually, or were NC mills around then?
Precise Al fabrication is an art in itself, so those guys in the above pictures must have been Masters!
Adelaide South Australia

Offline Apolloman

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Hello koennecke...

I am not quite agree with you because in aluminium alloy 7000 alloy the best known of this group is the 7075 which is used in aviation.

This is not Nomex honeycomb but the aluminium honeycomb
For info: Nomex is a registered trademark for flame resistant meta-aramid material developed in the early 1960s by DuPont and first marketed in 1967.

I think rather... simple aluminum sheet rolled and welded them (I am a welder by trade).
Only the structures of the inner frame are manufactured in mass...

(sorry for my poor English)

Paul Cultrera
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consacré au programme Apollo.

Le savoir est un trésor à partager avec tout le monde...

Offline Hoonte

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What is the little door the man with the glasses is looking through?

Offline Jim

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What is the little door the man with the glasses is looking through?

It is a window opening and not a door.

Offline Apolloman

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It is a window opening and not a door.

To be more precise: it is a side window left, astronauts were using this window to visual observations and take pictures.

The windows (left and right) measuring 33 cm sides






Sorry but the legends of the images are in French (according to the eccentrics of the NASA)
« Last Edit: 06/04/2008 04:06 PM by Apolloman »
Paul Cultrera
webmaster du site http://www.de-la-terre-a-la-lune.com/
consacré au programme Apollo.

Le savoir est un trésor à partager avec tout le monde...

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