Encyclopedia Astronautica
Nova GD-S


Solid propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 3,628,000/454,000 kg. Thrust 69,048.00 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 263 seconds. Massed estimated based on tank volumes, total thrust, and first stage burnout conditions. Recoverable stage; separation at 1,972 m/s at 53,000 m altitude; splashdown using retrorockets under 3 61 m diameter parachutes 610 km downrange.

Status: Study 1963.
Gross mass: 3,628,000 kg (7,998,000 lb).
Unfuelled mass: 454,000 kg (1,000,000 lb).
Height: 60.40 m (198.10 ft).
Diameter: 8.30 m (27.20 ft).
Span: 8.30 m (27.20 ft).
Thrust: 69,048.00 kN (15,522,607 lbf).
Specific impulse: 263 s.
Specific impulse sea level: 238 s.
Burn time: 116 s.

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Associated Countries
Associated Engines
  • 325 in solid Notional solid rocket engine in GD Nova studies. 69,047 kN. Study 1963. Isp=263s. Recoverable motors; separation at 1,972 m/s at 53,000 m altitude; splashdown using retrorockets under 3 61 m diameter parachutes 610 km downrange. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Nova GD-E American heavy-lift orbital launch vehicle. General Dynamics Nova design using 325 inch solid motors as first stage, M-1 engines in second stage. Recoverable solid motors, separation at 1,972 m/s at 53,000 m altitude; splashdown using retrorockets under 3 61 m diameter parachutes 610 km downrange. Recovery of solid motors forshadowed same approach on shuttle 15 years later. Masses estimated based on tank volumes, total thrust, and first stage burnout conditions. More...

Associated Propellants
  • Solid Solid propellants have the fuel and oxidiser embedded in a rubbery matrix. They were developed to a high degree of perfection in the United States in the 1950's and 1960's. In Russia, development was slower, due to a lack of technical leadership in the area and rail handling problems. Solid propellants have the fuel and oxidiser embedded in a rubbery matrix. They were developed to a high degree of perfection in the United States in the 1950's and 1960's. In Russia, development was slower, due to a lack of technical leadership in the area and rail handling problems. More...

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