Encyclopedia Astronautica
Helios B



helios.gif
Helios
Helios Launch Vehicle
Credit: © Mark Wade
American nuclear-powered orbital launch vehicle.

LEO Payload: 144,600 kg (318,700 lb) to a 556 km orbit. Payload: 81,600 kg (179,800 lb) to a earth escape.

Stage Data - Helios B

  • Stage 1. 1 x Helios B-1. Gross Mass: 236,000 kg (520,000 lb). Empty Mass: 14,000 kg (30,000 lb). Thrust (vac): 7,786.000 kN (1,750,362 lbf). Isp: 400 sec. Burn time: 110 sec. Isp(sl): 340 sec. Diameter: 6.70 m (21.90 ft). Span: 10.10 m (33.10 ft). Length: 8.80 m (28.80 ft). Propellants: Lox/LH2. No Engines: 5. Engine: Helios Stage 1. Status: Study, Ehricke, 1960. Comments: Booster stage with Lox tanks only to take nuclear second stage to stratosphere.
  • Stage 2. 1 x Helios B-2. Gross Mass: 177,000 kg (390,000 lb). Empty Mass: 29,000 kg (63,000 lb). Thrust (vac): 3,330.000 kN (748,610 lbf). Isp: 830 sec. Burn time: 355 sec. Diameter: 6.70 m (21.90 ft). Span: 10.10 m (33.10 ft). Length: 77.70 m (254.90 ft). Propellants: Nuclear/LH2. No Engines: 1. Engine: Nuclear 14 Gw. Status: Study, Ehricke, 1960. Comments: Nuclear second stage.

Status: Study 1960.
Gross mass: 586,520 kg (1,293,050 lb).
Payload: 144,600 kg (318,700 lb).
Height: 93.00 m (305.00 ft).
Diameter: 6.70 m (21.90 ft).
Thrust: 6,619.00 kN (1,488,010 lbf).
Apogee: 556 km (345 mi).

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
Associated Engines
  • Helios Stage 1 Notional lox/lh2 rocket engine. 1667 kN. Study 1960. Engines for booster stage with Lox tanks only to take nuclear second stage to stratosphere. Isp=400s. Helios A, B, C studies. More...
  • Nuclear 14 Gw Notional nuclear/lh2 rocket engine. 3334 kN. Study 1960. Nuclear second stage Isp=830s. Used on Helios B launch vehicle. More...

See also
  • Helios Study by Kraft Ehricke of a vehicle where the booster stage contains liquid oxygen tanks only and takes the nuclear second stage to the stratosphere. The nuclear sustainer then takes the payload to orbit or escape trajectory. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • Convair American manufacturer of rockets, spacecraft, and rocket engines. Convair, USA. More...

Associated Stages
  • Helios B-1 Lox/LH2 propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 236,000/14,000 kg. Thrust 7,786.00 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 400 seconds. Booster stage with Lox tanks only to take nuclear second stage to stratosphere. More...
  • Helios B-2 Nuclear/LH2 propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 177,000/29,000 kg. Thrust 3,330.00 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 830 seconds. Nuclear second stage More...

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