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Encyclopedia Astronautica Index: W

W - watt(s)
W13 - Alternate designation for Navaho G-26.
W27 - Alternate designation for Regulus 2.
W28 - Alternate designation for CGM-13B.
W30 - Alternate designation for Talos.
W31 - Alternate designation for MIM-14A.
W36 - Alternate designation for Navaho G-38.
W38 - Alternate designation for Atlas E CGM-16E.
W39 - Alternate designation for Snark.
W3A - Series of Eutelsat satellites using the Spacebus 3000 bus to provide a full range of telecommunications applications including digital DVB broadcasting, multimedia, broadband access and pay-per-use bandwidth for corporate networks over a large zone covering Europe and Africa.
W40 - Alternate designation for CIM-10B.
W45 - Alternate designation for Little John.
W45 Mod 1 - Alternate designation for RIM-2D.
W47 - Alternate designation for Polaris A2.
W49 - Alternate designation for Thor.
W5 - Alternate designation for Regulus 1.
W-5 - Alternate designation for Hermes A-3B.
W50 - Alternate designation for Pershing 1.
W52 - Alternate designation for Sergeant.
W53 - Alternate designation for Titan II.
W53 - Alternate designation for Titan 2.
W54 - Alternate designation for Davy Crockett XM-29.
W56 - Alternate designation for Minuteman 2.
W58 - Alternate designation for Polaris A3.
W59 - Alternate designation for Minuteman 1A.
W59 (Mk. 5) or W56 (Mk. 11) - Alternate designation for Minuteman 1B.
W66 - Alternate designation for Sprint ABM.
W68 - Alternate designation for Poseidon C3.
W69 - Alternate designation for SRAM.
W7 - Alternate designation for Corporal.
W-7 - Alternate designation for Hermes A-2.
W70 - Alternate designation for MGM-52A.
W71 - Alternate designation for Spartan ABM.
W76 - Alternate designation for Trident C-4.
W78 - Alternate designation for Minuteman 3.
W80 - Alternate designation for AGM-86A.
W80-1 - Alternate designation for AGM-86B.
W81 - Alternate designation for RIM-67A.
W85 - Alternate designation for Pershing 2.
W87 - Alternate designation for Peacekeeper.
W88 - Alternate designation for Trident D-5.
WAC - Development of the JPL-Ordnance WAC began in 1944. In 1946 it became the first American rocket to exceed 80 km altitude (above the earth's atmosphere as defined by publicity of the time). It was capable of taking 11 kg to 30 km altitude and was powered by a liquid propellant engine originally developed for JATO applications. Status: Retired 1949. First Launch: 1945-09-27. Last Launch: 1945-10-02. Number: 4 . Gross mass: 658 kg (1,450 lb). Thrust: 6.70 kN (1,506 lbf).
WAC A - American sounding rocket. Status: Retired 1946. First Launch: 1945-10-11. Last Launch: 1946-05-10. Number: 7 . Gross mass: 300 kg (660 lb).
WAC A-0 - Alternate designation for Tiny Tim.
WAC B - American sounding rocket. Status: Retired 1949. First Launch: 1946-12-02. Last Launch: 1949-05-27. Number: 13 . Gross mass: 300 kg (660 lb).
Wac Corporal - Alternate designation for Wac.
WAC-1 - Nitric acid/Aniline propellant rocket stage. Thrust 6.70 kN. Status: Retired 1950. Gross mass: 300 kg (660 lb). Unfuelled mass: 125 kg (275 lb). Thrust: 6.70 kN (1,506 lbf). More at: Nitric acid/Amine
Wachtel, Max - German colonel and commander-in-chief for service introduction of the V-1.
Wade, David - American career Air Force officer who advanced to the rank of lieutenant general in 1964. He was the first commander of the 1st Missile Division at Vandenberg AFB from 1958 to 1961. Retired from the USAF in 1967 and became director of the Louisiana prison system. Born: 1911-06-15. Died: 1990-05-11.
Wagner, Herbert - German aircraft designer. Born: 1900. Died: 1982-01-01.
Wagtail - American air-to-ground missile.
Wahmke - German propulsion expert. Rocket pioneer and engine developer. Died: 1934-01-01.
Wakata, Koichi - Japanese engineer mission specialist astronaut 1992-on. Status: Active 1992-on. Born: 1963-08-01. Spaceflights: 4 . Total time in space: 347.36 days.
Wake Island - US Pacific test vehicle launch site. In use from 1974 for launches of re-entry test vehicles and anti-ballistic missile targets. First Launch: 1974-02-13. Last Launch: 2013-09-10. Number: 20 .
Wake Shield Facility - Full designation for WSF.
Wakelin, James H - American manager, assistant secretary of the Navy (research and development) 1959-1964. Born: 1911-05-06. Died: 1990-12-21.
Walchner, Otto - German expert in supersonics aerodynamics during World War II. Worked in America at Wright Field after the war.
Waldheide-Neckarsulm - US base in the 1980's for 36 Pershing 2 IRBM's. The launchers and missiles were withdrawn and destroyed under the INF Treaty with the Soviet Union.
Walheim, Rex Joseph - American test pilot mission specialist astronaut 1996-on. Status: Active 1996-on. Born: 1962-10-10. Spaceflights: 3 . Total time in space: 36.36 days.
Walker AFB - Operational US Atlas F (SMS 579) ICBM base, location of several fuelling accidents in 1963-1964.
Walker AFB Site 01 - First Launch: 1963-06-02. Last Launch: 1963-06-02. Number: 1 .
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Walker AFB Site 05 - First Launch: 1964-02-13. Last Launch: 1964-02-13. Number: 1 .
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Walker AFB Site 579 - Atlas launch complex. First Launch: 1964-03-09. Last Launch: 1964-03-09. Number: 1 .
Walker Cay - Alternate name for Little Carter Bay.
Walker, Charles - American engineer. Part of Atlas management team. Born: 1925-05-01.
Walker, Charles David - American engineer payload specialist astronaut 1983-1985. Status: Inactive; Active 1983-1985. Born: 1948-08-29. Spaceflights: 3 . Total time in space: 19.91 days.
Walker, David Mathieson - American test pilot astronaut 1978-1996. Navy nickname Red Flash, a confident pilot. Status: Deceased; Active 1978-1996. Born: 1944-05-20. Died: 2001-04-23. Spaceflights: 4 . Total time in space: 30.19 days.
Walker, Joseph Albert - American NACA/NASA test pilot 1945-1966. Flew D-558, X-1, X-3, X-4, and X-5, and into space on X-15 Flights 77, 90, and 91. Killed in 1968 when the F-104 he was flying collided with the XB-70 during a photo opportunity. Status: Deceased; Active 1960-1963. Born: 1921-02-20. Died: 1966-06-08. Spaceflights: 3 . Total time in space: 0.0223 days.
Walker, Shannon - American astrophysicist mission specialist astronaut, 2004-on. Status: Active 2004-on. Born: 1965-06-04. Spaceflights: 1 . Total time in space: 163.30 days.
Wallace, Fred - American engineer. Atlas Chief of Test Operations at Sycamore Canyon. Born: 1922-08-05. Died: 2009-12-18.
Walleye 1 - Alternate name of Walleye MK 6 MOD 0.
Walleye AGM-62 - Martin Marietta air-to-surface missile.
Walleye AGM-62A - American air-to-surface missile. Walleye I Gross mass: 500 kg (1,100 lb). Payload: 384 kg (846 lb).
Walleye AGM-62B - American air-to-surface missile. Walleye II Gross mass: 1,000 kg (2,200 lb). Payload: 900 kg (1,980 lb).
Walleye MK 6 MOD 0 - American air-to-surface missile. TV-guided. Nuclear version of Walleye II. Status: Operational 1967. Gross mass: 1,061 kg (2,339 lb). Payload: 910 kg (2,000 lb).
Wallops - American agency. Wallops Flight Facility, USA.
Wallops Island - Wallops Flight Facility. Small NASA launch site for sounding rocket launches and occasional Scout launches to orbit. Air launches are conducted from the Drop Zone Wallops Island, 37.00 N 72.0 W. With the last orbital launch in 1985 and the decline in sounding rocket launches, Wallops fell into near-disuse as a launch center. Its fortunes revised with the establishment of Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport in 2005 and orbital launches resumed in 2010. First Launch: 1946-05-01. Last Launch: 2014-08-23. Number: 4581 .
Wallops Island DZ - Air-launched rocket drop zone. Aircraft depart from runway RW04/22, WFF Research Airport, Wallops Main Base First Launch: 1996-11-04. Last Launch: 1999-12-04. Number: 6 .
Wallops Island LA0 HAD - Launch Area 0, HAD launcher First Launch: 1972-02-17. Last Launch: 1972-03-22. Number: 2 .
Wallops Island LA0A - Conestoga launch complex. Launch Area 0A First Launch: 1995-10-23. Last Launch: 2014-07-13. Number: 5 .
Wallops Island LA0B - Minotaur, ALV launch complex. Launch Area 0B, Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport First Launch: 2006-12-16. Last Launch: 2013-11-20. Number: 8 .
Wallops Island LA1 - Little Joe, Iris, Astrobee, Aerobee, Little Joe 1 2C launch complex. Aerobee Launcher, Launch Area 1 First Launch: 1959-08-21. Last Launch: 2011-07-21. Number: 19 .
Wallops Island LA1 AML - AML 50K Launcher, Launch Area 1 First Launch: 2010-03-27. Last Launch: 2012-09-22. Number: 5 .
Wallops Island LA2 - Tomahawk Sandia, Black Brant, Astrobee, Arcas, Apache launch complex. Launch Area 2 First Launch: 1963-10-31. Last Launch: 2010-09-21. Number: 24 .
Wallops Island LA2 AML-1 - Thiokol AML-1 North, Launch Area 2
Wallops Island LA2 AML-2 - Thiokol AML-2 South, Launch Area 2
Wallops Island LA2 ARC - ARC Launcher, Launch Area 2 First Launch: 2011-07-10. Last Launch: 2013-08-13. Number: 7 .
Wallops Island LA2 HAD - HAD Launcher, Launch Area 2 First Launch: 2012-03-27. Last Launch: 2012-03-27. Number: 2 .
Wallops Island LA2 JUP - Jupiter Launcher, Launch Area 2A
Wallops Island LA2 MLS - Military Launcher South, Launch Area 2
Wallops Island LA2 RAG - RAG Launcher, Launch Area 2A
Wallops Island LA3 - Scout, Nike, Apache launch complex. Mk I Launcher, Launch Area 3 First Launch: 1960-04-18. Last Launch: 1970-03-07. Number: 22 .
Wallops Island LA3 HAD - HAD Launcher, Launch Area 3
Wallops Island LA3A - Scout launch complex. Mk II Launcher, Launch Area 3 First Launch: 1964-07-20. Last Launch: 1985-12-13. Number: 23 .
Wallops Island LA3B - 20K AML launcher, Pad 3B, Launch Area 3
Wallops Island LA4 - Tomahawk Sandia, Sergeant, Little Joe, Journeyman launch complex. Launch Area 4 First Launch: 1961-04-28. Last Launch: 1970-10-09. Number: 6 .
Wallops Island LA4 HAD - HAD launcher, Launch Area 4
Wallops Island LA4 MAST - MAST launcher, Launch Area 4
Wallops Island LA4 ML - Military Launcher, Launch Area 4
Wallops Island LA5 - Cajun, Black Brant, Apache launch complex. Launch Area 5 First Launch: 1970-03-06. Last Launch: 1976-01-10. Number: 7 .
Wallops Island LP08B - Wallops Island LA08B
Wallops Island LP0A - Antares launch complex.
Wallops Island RW04/22 - Alternate name for Wallops Island DZ.
Walpot, Heike - German physician payload specialist astronaut, 1987-1993. Status: Inactive; Active 1987-1993. Born: 1960-06-19.
Walter, Ulrich Hans - German physicist payload specialist astronaut 1987-1993. Status: Inactive; Active 1987-1993. Born: 1954-02-09. Spaceflights: 1 . Total time in space: 9.99 days.
Walther - German rocket technician; later worked in France as part of the structures group at LRBA from 1946 to 1960. Returned to live in Bremerhaven.
Walz, Carl Erwin - American test pilot mission specialist astronaut 1990-2008. Status: Inactive; Active 1990-2008. Born: 1955-09-06. Spaceflights: 4 . Total time in space: 230.54 days.
Wang Daheng - Chinese Engineer. Chief Designer of camera systems for Chinese reconnaissance satellites.
Wang Fuhe - Chinese pilot taikonaut, 1971, but program cancelled less than a year later. Wang was a PLAAF pilot when selected. Selected as Chinese astronaut in March 1971. Status: Inactive.
Wang Fuquan - Chinese pilot taikonaut, 1971, but program cancelled less than a year later. Joined PLA in 1958. He was a PLAAF deputy regiment commander when selected. Selected as Chinese astronaut in March 1971. Status: Inactive. Born: 1939.
Wang Quanbo - Chinese pilot taikonaut, 1971, but program cancelled less than a year later. Joined PLA in 1958. He was a PLAAF squadron commander when selected. Selected as Chinese astronaut in March 1971. Status: Inactive.
Wang Rongsen - Chinese pilot taikonaut, 1971, but program cancelled less than a year later. Wang was a PLAAF deputy division commander when selected. Selected as Chinese astronaut in March 1971. Status: Inactive. Born: 1934.
Wang Xiji - Chinese space technology pioneer. Chief Designer of China's sounding rockets, first space launch vehicle, and first recoverable satellites.
Wang Yaping - Chinese female pilot taikonaut, 2010-on. Backup, Shenzhou 9 mission. Status: Active 2010-on. Born: 1980-01-27. Spaceflights: 1 . Total time in space: 14.60 days.
Wang Yongzhi - Chinese Chief Designer for Project 921, supervised development of the Shenzhou spacecraft, CZ-2F booster, new launch facilities at Jiuquan, new testing, training, and control facilities, and a worldwide tracking and recovery network. Born: 1931.
Wang Zhiyue - Chinese pilot taikonaut, 1971, but program cancelled less than a year later. Status: Inactive. Born: 1941.
Wang, Taylor Gun-Jin - American physicist payload specialist astronaut 1983-1985. Status: Inactive; Active 1983-1985. Born: 1940-06-16. Spaceflights: 1 . Total time in space: 7.01 days.
Warren AFB - Atlas D (SMS 564), SMS 564) and E (SMS 549) ICBM base. Later a Minuteman ICBM base.
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Warsitz, Erich - German Luftwaffe test pilot. Born: 1906. Died: 1983-01-01.
Waseda - 1U Cubesat for Waseda University, Tokyo, released in parking orbit. Status unclear.
Waseda-SAT 2 - Technology satellite for Waseda University, Japan. Launched 2010. Used the CubeSat (1U) bus. First Launch: 2010-05-20. Last Launch: 2010-05-20. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 1.00 kg (2.20 lb).
Waseda-SAT 3 - Used the CubeSat (1U) bus. First Launch: 2016-12-09. Last Launch: 2016-12-09. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 1.00 kg (2.20 lb).
Wasielewski, Eugene W - American engineer, at NASA 1947-1960, developing major engine-testing laboratories and supersonic wind tunnels. Born: 1912-07-21. Died: 1972-07-01.
WASP - American sounding rocket. Wasp research and development chaff and parachute rockets were used to obtain wind soundings to 260,000 m, fired by Naval Ordnance Missile Test Facility at WSPG. Status: Retired 1966. First Launch: 1966-06-07. Last Launch: 1966-06-07. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 6,800 kg (14,900 lb). Thrust: 580.00 kN (130,380 lbf).
Wasp AGM-124 - Hughes air-to-surface missile.
Wasp UAV - American Micro-UAV.
Wasserfall - Seminal German storable propellant surface-to-air missile, tested during World War II, but never operational. The rocket was copied in the USA as the Hermes surface-to-surface missile, in the USSR as the R-101, and in France as the R.04. In Russia it also became the starting point for the R-11/R-17 Scud surface-to-surface missile. Status: Retired 1944. First Launch: 1944-02-29. Last Launch: 1944-10-30. Number: 3 . Gross mass: 3,500 kg (7,700 lb). Unfuelled mass: 1,700 kg (3,700 lb). Payload: 300 kg (660 lb). Thrust: 78.00 kN (17,535 lbf). More at: Nitric acid/Amine
Waterman, Alan T - American physicist. First director of the National Science Foundation, 1951-1963. Disputed authority for space science with NASA. Born: 1892. Died: 1967-01-01.
Watterson, John Brett - American engineer military spaceflight engineer astronaut, 1979-1986. Status: Inactive; Active 1979-1986. Born: 1949-09-10.
Waveriders - British manned spaceplane family of the 1950's-1970's. This approach improved the lift-to-drag ratio and reduced heating during re-entry by using compression lift, riding the shock wave generated by the spacecraft's flight as a lifting surface.
WCMD - American Wind Corrected Munitions Dispenser.
WD - Abbreviation for White Dwarf
We Chose Death - Poem: The moon above...
WE WISH - Technology satellite for Meisei Electric Co., Japan. Launched 2012. Used the CubeSat (1U) bus. First Launch: 2012-07-21. Last Launch: 2012-07-21. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 1.00 kg (2.20 lb).
We Wish - Cubesat released from ISS Kibo module.
Weapon Alpha RUR-4 - NOTS ship-launched surface-to-underwater rocket.
Weapons Research Establishment Satellite - Alternate designation for Wresat earth atmosphere satellite.
Weaver, Carol Lynn Belt - American meteorologist payload specialist astronaut, 1988-2001. Status: Inactive; Active 1988-2001. Born: 1953-01-30.
Webb Space Telescope - Alternate designation for WST visible astronomy satellite.
Webb, James E - American manager, NASA Administrator 1961-1968. A savvy political operator and manager, he was singularly responsible for NASA being able to achieve the goal of landing a man on the moon by 1970. Born: 1906-10-07. Died: 1992-03-27.
Weber - American manufacturer of spacecraft. Weber State University, Utah, USA. Status: xRet. ??.12.2002. Number: 2 . Duration: 18.77 days.
Weber, Andrae H - German expert in guided missiles during World War II. Stayed in Germany after the war.
Weber, Mary Ellen - American chemical engineer mission specialist astronaut 1992-2002. Chemist. Status: Inactive; Active 1992-2002. Born: 1962-08-24. Spaceflights: 2 . Total time in space: 18.77 days.
Weber, Wolfgang - German Officer. Lieutenant colonel and commander of a V-2 Artillery Unit.
Webersat - Carried Earth imaging camera. Amateur radio satellite in Oscar series.
Webersat (WO 18, Webersat-OSCAR 18) - Amateur communication, imaging satellite for Weber State University Center for Aerospace Technology (CAST), USA. Launched 1990. Used the AMSAT-NA Microsat bus. First Launch: 1990-01-22. Last Launch: 1990-01-22. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 12 kg (26 lb).
Webersat-OSCAR 18 - Alternate name of Webersat (WO 18, Webersat-OSCAR 18).
Wegenroth - German expert in solid fuel, ram jets during World War II. Stayed in Germany after the war.
Wehner, R S - American Engineer. R.S. Wehner was research scientist with the Radio Corporation of America, 1943-1945; Airborne Instrument Laboratory, 1945-1948; the Rand Corp., 1948-1951; and the Hughes Aircraft Co., 1951-1959. Key figure in definition of the earliest reconnaissance satellites. Born: 1915.
Wehrmacht - German agency overseeing development of rocket engines and rockets. Wehrmacht, Germany.
Weidner, Hermann Joachim - German expert in guided missiles during World War II. Joined the Rocket Team at Fort Bliss in 1947. Involved in design and construction of the Guided Missile Test Facility at the Redstone Arsenal, 1951-1955. By 1960, Deputy Director, Structures and Mechanics Division, NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. Played a key role in development of the Saturn V as Director of Research and Development Operations in the Saturn Program Office, supervising 4000 staff, from September 1963. Retired in 1973 and returned to live in Solms, Germany in 1975. Born: 1912-08-24. Died: 2008-07-05.
Weinberger, Caspar W - American manager, led OMB 1970-1976, shaped shuttle design by limiting its budget. As Secretary of Defense for Reagan 1981-1987, doled out large military increases, including new ICBMs, Star Wars, military satellites. Born: 1917-08-18. Died: 2006-03-28.
Weiss, Helmut - German engineer. Member of German Rocket Team in France after WW2.
Weissenborn - German rocket engineer in WW2; later worked in France at LRBA on gyroscopes and antennae in the automated control loop department 1947-1952.
WeissSat 1 - Technology satellite for Weiss School, USA. Used the CubeSat (1U) bus. Gross mass: 1.00 kg (2.20 lb).
Weitz, Paul Joseph - American pilot astronaut 1966-1988. Member of first successful space station mission. Status: Inactive; Active 1966-1988. Born: 1932-07-25. Spaceflights: 2 . Total time in space: 33.05 days.
Wells, H G - British writer, noted futurist, and one of the founders of the literary genre of science fiction. His novels described a future filled with technology, some of it terrifying, and contact with extraterrestrial beings, much of it disastrous Born: 1866. Died: 1946-01-01.
Wenchang - Chinese launch center for orbital launches. Designed to accommodate the modular family of Chinese next generation launch vehicles. First launches from complexes 101 and 201 for the CZ-5 and CZ-7 launch vehicles were in 2016. The site, on the eastern shore of Hainan Island, eliminates the drawbacks of earlier Chinese launhch sites located inland. The southerly location reduces the plane change required to reach synchronous orbits, thereby maximizing payload. The launch range over the Pacific eliminates azimuth restrictions and the risk of booster stages or debris falling in populated areas. The location allows delivery of launch vehicle stages by sea, removing the restriction on size limiting inland sites to rail transport.
Wenchang LC101 - Launch complex for the CZ-5 launch vehicle.
Wenchang LC201 - Launch complex for the CZ-7 launch vehicle.
WEOS (Kanta Kun) - Ecology, Whale Monitoring satellite for Chiba Institute of Technology, Japan. Launched 2002. First Launch: 2002-12-14. Last Launch: 2002-12-14. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 50 kg (110 lb).
West Ford - Alternate name for WestFord Needles.
Westar - Designation of series of communications satellites launched by HCI. The satellites received transmissions from earth stations and retransmitted them to other earth stations in Canada. The antenna coverage of the satellite covered all of Canada.
Westar 1, 2, 3 - Communication satellite built by Hughes for Western Union, USA. Launched 1974 - 1979. Used the HS-333AS bus. First Launch: 1974-04-13. Last Launch: 1979-08-10. Number: 3 . Gross mass: 574 kg (1,265 lb).
Westar 4, 5, 6 - Communication satellite built by Hughes for Western Union => Hughes Communications, Inc., (HCI), USA. Launched 1982 - 1984. Used the HS-376 bus. First Launch: 1982-02-26. Last Launch: 1984-02-03. Number: 3 .
Western Electric - American manufacturer of rockets. Western Electric, USA.
Western Test Range DZ - Air-launched rocket drop zone.
Western Union Telegraph Corp. - Alternate name for WUTC.
Westford Needles - American passive communications satellite. In an attempt to lay a radio-reflective ring around the world, small metal dipole needles were allowed to sublimate out of a matrix. Experimental, communication, passice satellite for MIT Lincoln Laboratory, USA. Launched 1961-1963. Status: Operational 1961. First Launch: 1961-10-21. Last Launch: 1963-05-09. Number: 3 . Gross mass: 40 kg (88 lb).
WESTPAC - Original known as WPLTN-1, this geodesy satellite was a copy of Potsdam's GFZ-1 satellite, a sphere covered with laser retroreflectors, with a different `Fizeau' corner cube design. It served as a target for the Western Pacific Laser Tracking Network.
WESTPAC 1 - Geodesy satellite built by Russian Institute for Space Device Engineering (RISDE) for Electro Optic Systems (EOS), Western Pacific Laser Tracking Network (WPLTN), Australia. Launched 1998. First Launch: 1998-07-10. Last Launch: 1998-07-10. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 24 kg (52 lb).
Westphas - German expert in autopilots steering of guided missiles during World War II. Stayed in Germany after the war.
WETF - Weightless Environment Training Facility Large swimming pool at Houston with mockups of the shuttle airlock, cargo bay, payloads, and ISS elements. Used by spacesuited astronauts, with suitable ballast and accompanied by divers, to train for spacewalks.
Wetherbee, James Donald 'Wexbee' - American test pilot astronaut 1984-2005. Flew in space six times. Status: Inactive; Active 1984-2005. Born: 1952-11-27. Spaceflights: 6 . Total time in space: 66.43 days.
WETS - Abbreviation for Wednesday Evening Tanking Society
Wexler, Harry - American meteorologist, at US Weather Bureau 1934-1961. One of the first scientists to envision using satellites for meteorological purposes and known as the father of the Tiros satellite. Born: 1911. Died: 1962-01-01.
WFC - NASA Wallops Flight Center
WFF - Alternate designation for Wallops Island.
WFF - Abbreviation for Wallops Flight Facility
WFIRST - Astronomy (IR) satellite built by, USA.
WFPC - Wide Field / Planetary Camera (on HST)
WFPCII - Abbreviation for Replacement for WFPC
WGS - USAF Wideband Global Satcom satellite, designed to replace the DSCS series. The satellite carried X-band and Ka-band communications payloads. Used the HS 702 bus.
WGS 1, 2, 3 (WGS Block 1) - Communication satellite built by Boeing for USAF, USA. Launched 2007 - 2009. Used the BSS-702 bus. First Launch: 2007-10-11. Last Launch: 2009-12-05. Number: 3 . Gross mass: 5,987 kg (13,199 lb).
WGS 4, 5, 6, 7 (WGS Block 2) - Communication satellite built by Boeing for USAF, USA. Launched 2012 - 2015. Used the BSS-702 bus. First Launch: 2012-01-20. Last Launch: 2015-07-24. Number: 4 . Gross mass: 5,987 kg (13,199 lb).
WGS 8, 9, 10 (WGS Block 2 Follow-On) - Communication satellite built by Boeing for USAF, USA (#8, 10); USA, multinational (#9). Launched 2016-2017. Used the BSS-702 bus. First Launch: 2016-12-07. Last Launch: 2017-03-18. Number: 2 . Gross mass: 5,987 kg (13,199 lb).
WGS Block 1 - Alternate name of WGS 1, 2, 3 (WGS Block 1).
WGS Block 2 - Alternate name of WGS 4, 5, 6, 7 (WGS Block 2).
WGS Block 2 Follow-On - Alternate name of WGS 8, 9, 10 (WGS Block 2 Follow-On).
Wheelock, Douglas Harry - American test pilot mission specialist astronaut 1998-on. US Army. Status: Active 1998-on. Born: 1960-05-05. Spaceflights: 2 . Total time in space: 178.40 days.
Wheelus AFB - Mace/Matador operating location. Crews from Europe would come here once a year to live-fire one of the cruise missiles then deployed around-the-clock in Germany.
When I was a kid, - Poem: When I was a kid, we had 9 planets...
Where Have All the Astronauts Gone? - The public pays little attention to manned space flight and seems to believe that little has changed. They see in films a massive NASA organization training cadres of astronauts for flight. This is partly due to NASA's own publicity, with popular films portraying a future they wish will happen. Yet if you visit astronaut training facilities these days, you may feel you are visiting a museum. The once-bustling simulators and training halls are quiet. Where have all the astronauts gone?
Whipple, Fred L - American astronomer, popular writer on planetary exploration in the 1950's, who helped to fire the public's imagination and enthusiasm for space exploration. Born: 1906-11-05. Died: 2004-08-30.
Whitcomb, Gordon P - British engineer, working at ESA from 1974 on spacecraft system design. Later headed ESA's Future Science Projects Office. Born: 1940.
White Cloud - Code name for NOSS military naval signals reconnaissance satellite.
White Knight - Subsonic rocket launch aircraft. Carries SpaceShipOne to release point 65 km from Mohave Airport base, then releases it at 15 km altitude at 215 kph. Wing area 43.5 sq m. Status: Retired 2004. Gross mass: 4,100 kg (9,000 lb). Unfuelled mass: 1,200 kg (2,600 lb). Payload: 8,000 kg (17,600 lb). Thrust: 34.30 kN (7,711 lbf). More at: Air/Kerosene
White Sands - White Sands Missile Range occupies an area 160 x 65 km in the Tularosa Basin of southern New Mexico, across the Sacramento Mountain range from Roswell. In the 1930's, Robert Goddard, after surveying weather conditions and population densities, had selected Roswell for his pioneering rocket tests. White Sands, a true desert area, was even more unpopulated than Roswell. German advances in rocketry during World War II impelled the US Army to begin programs to exploit this technology. The White Sands Proving Ground was established for testing German and American long-range rockets on 9 July 1945. Seven days later the first atomic bomb was exploded at Trinity Site, near the north boundary of the range. The first launch of a Tiny Tim rocket was on 26 September 1945. On 11 October a Tiny Tim boosted a WAC Corporal rocket from the tower. This was the first use of Launch Complex 33, later to be used for V-2, Nike, Viking, Corporal, Lance and Multiple Launch Rocket System testing. First Launch: 1945-09-26. Last Launch: 2014-07-22. Number: 7740 .
White Sands LC32 - Storm-2, Hera launch complex. Launch site for anti-ballistic missile targets. These are most often test vehicles composed of surplus Minuteman ICBM stages. First Launch: 1970-02-07. Last Launch: 1998-09-24. Number: 5 .
White Sands LC33 - Wac, Viking, V-2, Nike, Javelin, Hermes, Corporal, Atlas, Apache launch complex. LC 33 was the United States' first major rocket launch facility. The original Army Launch Area 1 complex consisted of a blockhouse, several concrete launching pads for captured German V-2 rockets, a 30-m tall launch tower for Aerobee rockets, a gantry and blast pit. First Launch: 1945-09-26. Last Launch: 1970-08-28. Number: 246 .
White Sands LC35 - Standard-ER, Black Brant, Aerobee launch complex. Work on LC-35 was begun by the US Navy in 1946. Although no specific requirement had been identified, Captain Robert McLaughlin of the Bureau of Naval Ordnance realized the Navy would need an instrumented range to test the surface-to-air missiles planned for Navy ships. The first facilities built were a blockhouse and two launch towers for Aerobee sounding rockets. From 1947 a total of 675 Aerobees were launched from White Sands, most of these from LC-35. First Launch: 1947-09-25. Last Launch: 2010-07-30. Number: 494 .
White Sands LC36 - Terrier, Redstone, Nike, Little Joe II, Honest John, Black Brant, Storm, Aries, Apollo LES launch complex. Originally designated Army Launch Area 3, LC36 was later a LC36 was a NASA facility that supported tests of the Apollo Launch Escape System. It was also used to launch NASA sounding rocket missions. The complex included a blockhouse, launch control equipment, and launchers with environmental shelters. These launchers included:
  • An 11-m rail with 3600 kg capacity
  • A 15-m rail with 11,000 kg capacity
  • A 50-m tower with 3600 kg capacity
  • A 1.2-m diameter stool with 23,000 kg capacity
  • A 9-m rail with 7000 kg capacity.
First Launch: 1958-03-01. Last Launch: 2008-01-11. Number: 246 .
White Sands LC37 - Squirt, HEDI launch complex. LC 37 (Army Launch Area Three) was the main test complex for the Nike Ajax and Nike Hercules surface-to-air missiles. Later additions were used for HIBEX and HEDI KITE launches, and as the Army's Advanced Gun Munitions Test Site. First Launch: 1964-01-01. Last Launch: 1992-08-26. Number: 9 .
White Sands LC38 - Nike Zeus launch complex. LC 38 (Army Launch Area Five) was originally built in the 1960's for test of the Nike Zeus anti-ballistic missile. The Nike Zeus system required elaborate infrastructure to house the large missiles, and even larger assembly of radars, computers, and electronics. There were two R&D Zeus Launch Cells and later one tactical Launch Cell. In 1969 LC-38 was modified for test of the Patriot surface-to-air missile system, which eventually was developed to be capable against short-range ballistic missiles. The complex continued to be used for Patriot testing into the 21st Century. First Launch: 1959-08-26. Last Launch: 1964-12-09. Number: 69 .
White Sands LC39 - Launch Complex
White Sands LC50 - Sprint, HIBEX launch complex. West Center 50 was located in the central portion of the range near Rhodes Canyon. The facility included a hardened blockhouse to accommodate test of Sprint short-range anti-ballistic missiles without a destruct charge. The only missiles (with the possible exception of a HIBEX) that were ever launched from LC50 were Sprints (except for other small missile launched from there in later years). LC-50 was a mound built up in the desert with a ramp up to it coming from the south-southwest. The mound originally had three launch cells. One was destroyed by an explosion of FLA-3 in the cell. It was fenced and locked. First Launch: 1965-05-26. Last Launch: 1970-08-12. Number: 43 .
White Sands LC94 - Nike Zeus, Hera launch complex. Launch Complex 94 (FIX)
White Sands SULF - Storm launch complex. The Speedball Uprange Launch Facility was located at the northwest end of the range and was equipped with a blockhouse, ordnance assembly building, three launchers, and a 30-m long environmental shelter. This complex was used to launch anti-ballistic missile targets (generally composed of surplus Minuteman ICBM motors) and to launch technology demonstrations or unique science and engineering payloads into sub-orbital trajectories. First Launch: 1990-04-27. Last Launch: 1995-12-13. Number: 10 .
White Sands WSSH - White Sands Space Harbor
White Sea Launch Area - Submarine-launched ballistic missile area. First Launch: 1955-09-12. Last Launch: 2013-09-06. Number: 75 .
White, Alvin Swauger - American test pilot, 1954-1967. Chief test pilot for the XB-70. Status: Deceased. Born: 1918-12-09. Died: 2006-04-29.
White, Edward Higgins II - American test pilot astronaut 1962-1967. First American to walk in space. Died in on-pad fire of Apollo 1. Status: Deceased; Active 1962-1967. Born: 1930-11-14. Died: 1967-01-27. Spaceflights: 1 . Total time in space: 4.08 days.
White, Robert M - American manager, headed US Weather Bureau and ESSA in the 1960s; Administrator of NOAA in the 1970s; head of the National Academy of Engineering in the late 1980s. Early promoter of environmentalism. Born: 1923.
White, Robert Michael - American test pilot 1960-1962. First person to reach space in a rocketplane on X-15 Flight 62. Status: Deceased; Active 1960-1962. Born: 1924-07-06. Died: 2010-03-17. Spaceflights: 1 . Total time in space: 0.0072 days.
Whitehead, Clay T - American politician, a White House staff assistant during the Nixon Administration between 1969 and 1972 who was heavily involved in space policy associated with the decision to build the Space Shuttle and post-Apollo planning for NASA.
Whiteman AFB - Minuteman ICBM base.
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Whitson, Peggy Annette - American biochemist mission specialist astronaut 1996-on. Biochemist, first female space station commander. 376 cumulative days in space. Status: Active 1996-on. Born: 1960-02-09. Spaceflights: 2 . Total time in space: 376.72 days.
Wide Field Infrared Explorer - Alternate designation for WIRE infrared astronomy satellite.
Wideband (P76-5) - Experimental satellite built by JHU/APL for USAF STP (Space Test Program), USA. Launched 1976. Used Transit-Bus. First Launch: 1976-05-22. Last Launch: 1976-05-22. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 73 kg (160 lb).
Wiedemann, Hans Johann - German expert in guided missiles during World War II. Went to the United States after the war but by January 1947 returned to Germany after working at Port Washington, New York.
Wiegand, Heinrich - German expert in rockets during World War II. Stayed in Germany after the war.
Wier, Benjamin - American engineer. Atlas-E flight test conductor and later Deputy Program Manager. Born: 1927-08-01.
Wiesemann, Walter Fritz - German-American engineer. Reassigned from Luftwaffe to Peenemuende in 1941. Worked on anti-aircraft rockets, went to America with von Braun's team in 1945, working on Huntsville projects until retirement in 1970. Born: 1920-08-30. Died: 2000-07-11.
Wiesner, Jerome B - American scientist. Physicist, gadfly, science advisor to Presidents Eisenhower and Kennedy; opposed human spaceflight, the Apollo program, and the lunar orbit rendezvous method of lunar landing. Born: 1915-05-30. Died: 1994-10-21.
Wigbels, Lyn - American NASA manager for international affairs, 1979-on. Born: 1951.
Wilcutt, Terrence Wade - American test pilot astronaut 1990-2005. US Marine Corps Status: Inactive; Active 1990-2005. Born: 1949-10-31. Spaceflights: 4 . Total time in space: 42.00 days.
Wild Bill 2, 4 (Aftrack 27, 33) - American ELINT/SIGINT payloads in the Aftrack program. First Launch: 1962-12-13. Last Launch: 1963-06-15. Number: 2 .
Wild Fire - Canadian manned spacecraft. Study 2004. X-Prize suborbital balloon-launched ballistic spacecraft concept of the Da Vinci Project, led by Brian Feeney of Toronto, Canada. Reached the stage of engineering tests by 2003. Status: Study 2004. Gross mass: 3,300 kg (7,200 lb). Unfuelled mass: 1,500 kg (3,300 lb). Payload: 400 kg (880 lb). Thrust: 44.10 kN (9,914 lbf).
WildBlue - Broadband internet satellite series for WildBlue.
WildBlue 1 - Communication satellite built by Space Systems/Loral (SS/L) for Wild Blue, USA. Launched 2006. Used the SSL-1300 bus. First Launch: 2006-12-08. Last Launch: 2006-12-08. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 4,735 kg (10,438 lb).
Wiley Post Suit - American pressure suit, operational 1934-35. B F Goodrich made a full pressure suit for pioneering aviator Wiley Post, who used it to make ten stratospheric flights in 1934-1935. Status: operational 1934.
Williams, Bill Alvin - American physiologist payload specialist astronaut, 1983-1985. Status: Inactive; Active 1983-1985. Born: 1942-02-09.
Williams, Clifton Curtis 'CC' - American test pilot astronaut, 1963-1967. US Marine Corps aviator. Died in crash of his T-38 trainer aircraft. Status: Deceased; Active 1963-1967. Born: 1932-09-26. Died: 1967-10-05.
Williams, Dafydd Rhys 'Dave' - Canadian physician mission specialist astronaut 1992-2008. Status: Inactive; Active 1992-2008. Born: 1954-05-16. Spaceflights: 2 . Total time in space: 28.66 days.
Williams, Donald D - American engineer, instrumental in the development of the Early Bird and Syncom communications satellites. Committed suicide in 1966. Born: 1931. Died: 1966-02-21.
Williams, Donald Edward - American test pilot astronaut 1978-1990. Status: Deceased; Active 1978-1990. Born: 1942-02-13. Died: 2016-02-23. Spaceflights: 2 . Total time in space: 11.98 days.
Williams, Jeffrey Nels - American test pilot mission specialist astronaut 1996-on. 534 cumulative days in space. Status: Active 1996-on. Born: 1958-01-18. Spaceflights: 4 . Total time in space: 534.12 days.
Williams, Sunita Lyn 'Suni' - American test pilot mission specialist astronaut 1998-on. US Navy test pilot. Grew up in Needham, Massachusetts. Status: Active 1998-on. Born: 1965-09-09. Spaceflights: 2 . Total time in space: 321.72 days.
Williams, Walter C - American engineer, at NASA 1940-1964, founded NASA flight test facility at Edwards AFB, directed operations for Mercury. 1964-1975, VP at Aerospace Corporation. 1975-1982 chief engineer of NASA. Born: 1919-07-19. Died: 1995-10-07.
Willner, William - American NASA Manager, in charge of construction in the procurement and supply division of NASA Headquarters' office of business administration. By August 1960, he had moved to the office of research grants and contracts.
Willys-Overland - American manufacturer of rockets. Willys-Overland, USA.
Wilmore, Barry Eugene 'Butch' - American test pilot astronaut, 2000-on. Status: Active 2000-on. Born: 1962-12-29. Spaceflights: 2 . Total time in space: 178.04 days.
Wilson, Charles 'Chuck' - American engineer. Atlas Space Booster Program Manager Born: 1925-04-12.
Wilson, Charles E 'Electric Charlie' - American industrialist, headed General Electric and worked with Truman's Office of Defense Mobilization in the 1950s. Born: 1886. Died: 1972-01-01.
Wilson, Charles Erwin 'Engine Charlie' - American Manager, Eisenhower's Secretary of Defense 1953-1957, an ardent opponent of spaceflight. He had previously run GM, where he coined the phrase "What's good for General Motors is good for the country". Born: 1890-07-18. Died: 1961-09-26.
Wilson, Stephanie Diana - American engineer mission specialist astronaut 1996-2013. Engineer. Status: Inactive; Active 1996-2013. Born: 1966-09-27. Spaceflights: 3 . Total time in space: 42.99 days.
Wind - American earth magnetosphere satellite. Wind was designed to provide continuous measurement of the solar wind, particularly charged particles and magnetic field data. Scientific satellite built by Lockheed Martin Astro for NASA, USA. Launched 1994. Status: Operational 1994. First Launch: 1994-11-01. Last Launch: 1994-11-01. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 1,195 kg (2,634 lb).
WINDS - Wide-band Internetworking Engineering Test and Demonstration Satellite, pre-launch name for Kizuna.
WINDS (Kizuna) - Experimental Communication satellite operated by JAXA, Japan. Launched 2008. First Launch: 2008-02-23. Last Launch: 2008-02-23. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 4,850 kg (10,690 lb).
Winged - In the beginning, nobody (except Jules Verne) thought anybody would be travelling to space and back in ballistic cannon balls. The only proper way for a space voyager to return to earth was at the controls of a real winged airplane.
Winged Gemini - American manned spaceplane. Study 1966. Winged Gemini was the most radical modification of the basic Gemini reentry module ever considered. Status: Study 1966. Gross mass: 3,200 kg (7,000 lb). Unfuelled mass: 3,075 kg (6,779 lb). Thrust: 57.13 kN (12,844 lbf). More at: Solid
Winged Saturn V - North American's study was dated 18 March 1963. The second alternative was a two-stage reusable booster derived from the Saturn V. This would boost either an 11,400 kg cargo, or a half-disc lifting body spaceplane, which would accommodate two crew plus ten passengers and minor cargo Status: Study 1963. Gross mass: 2,720,000 kg (5,990,000 lb). Payload: 80,000 kg (176,000 lb). Thrust: 33,000.00 kN (7,418,000 lbf).
Winged Titan - American winged orbital launch vehicle. The only trace of this winged version of the Titan launch vehicle are some drawings in popular magazines ca. 1960. Status: Design 1960.
Winkler, Johannes - German engineer. Rocket enthusiast, launched first liquid rocket in Europe on 1931.02.21. Born: 1897-05-29. Died: 1947-12-27.
Winskowski, Henrik - German design engineer in WW2, member of the Rocket Team in the Soviet Union, worked on rocket engine development in Glushko's design bureau from 1947 to 1952. Worked in Engineering and Design; Dept. 61. Born: 1906-01-01.
Wintergerst, Alfred - German expert in rocket and aircraft equipment during World War II. Stayed in Germany after the war.
Wintergerst, Erich - German expert in aircraft and rocket during World War II. Stayed in Germany after the war.
WIRE - American infrared astronomy satellite. WIRE was designed to survey the celestial sky in the infrared bands and build on the results of the IRAS mission. Astronomy, Infra-red satellite built by NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (Bus); Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) (Instrument) for NASA, USA. Launched 1999. Status: Operational 1999. First Launch: 1999-03-05. Last Launch: 1999-03-05. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 254 kg (559 lb).
Wirth, Wolfgang - German expert in biological warfare during World War II. Stayed in Germany after the war.
Wisconsin-Madison - Wisconsin-Madison.
WISE - Wide Field Infrared Explorer astronomy satellite, designed to conduct an all-sky survey at infrared frequencies of 3.4, 4.6, 12 and 22 microns, detecting objects 100 times fainter than the earlier IRAS and Akari satellites. Used RS-300 bus.
WISE( NEOWISE (MIDEX 6) - Astronomy, Infrared satellite built by Ball Aerospace for NASA, USA. Launched 2009. Used the RS-300 3-axis stabilized bus, body-fixed solar arrays, gimbaled high gain antenna. bus. First Launch: 2009-12-14. Last Launch: 2009-12-14. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 532 kg (1,172 lb).
Wiseman, Gregory Reid - American test pilot astronaut, 2009-on. Status: Active 2009-on. Born: 1975-11-11. Spaceflights: 1 . Total time in space: 165.33 days.
Wisoff, Peter Jeffrey Kelsay 'Jeff' - American physicist mission specialist astronaut 1990-2001. Was married to astronaut Tammy Jernigan. Status: Inactive; Active 1990-2001. Born: 1958-08-16. Spaceflights: 4 . Total time in space: 44.34 days.
Withee, Wallace Walter - American engineer. Member of the Atlas management team; headed test operations. Born: 1913-03-01. Died: 2006-10-01.
Wittmann, Albin - German-American engineer. Member of the German rocket team, went to America after the first group. As of 1960, Head of Electrical Systems Analysis Branch, Quality Division, NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. Died at Huntsville, Alabama. Born: 1907-11-17. Died: 1988-08-16.
WIYN - Abbreviation for Wisconsin / Indiana / Yale / NOAO telescope
Wizard - America's first anti-ballistic missile system, as studied in the 1950's.
wk - Abbreviation for week
WNISAT - 30 cm cube for Weather News Inc. and Axelspace, to monitor northern sea routes and atmospheric CO2. Status: Operational 2013. First Launch: 2013-11-21. Last Launch: 2013-11-21. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 10 kg (22 lb).
WNISAT 1 - Earth observation satellite built by AXELSPACE for Weather News Inc., Japan. Launched 2013. First Launch: 2013-11-21. Last Launch: 2013-11-21. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 10 kg (22 lb).
WNISAT 1R - Earth observation satellite built by AXELSPACE for Weather News Inc.. Gross mass: 40 kg (88 lb).
WO - British agency. UK Special Projectile Operations Group, UK.
WO 18 - Alternate name of Webersat (WO 18, Webersat-OSCAR 18).
Woensdrecht - US base for BGM-109G ground-launched cruise missiles. Never became operational prior to the INF Treaty with the Soviet Union.
Woerdemann, Hugo H - German-American radio systems engineer, first worked with early rocketeers in 1934. Member of the Rocket Team at Peenemuende and the United States until 1950; thereafter working in radio technology for North American Aviation and his own firm, Magnetic Research Corporation. Died a grapefruit rancher in Temecula, California. Born: 1915-02-21. Died: 1999-06-24.
Wohlfahrt, Kurt - German engineer, worked at Peenemuende in WW2; worked in the Soviet Union afterwards. One of the group that fired V-2 rockets at Kapustin Yar in 1946. Born: 1917.
Wolf, David Alexander 'Bluto' - American physician mission specialist astronaut 1990-2001. Status: Inactive; Active 1990-2001. Born: 1956-08-23. Spaceflights: 4 . Total time in space: 168.37 days.
Wolff, Waldemar - German ballistics expert; worked in the Soviet Union after WW2. One of the group that fired V-2 rockets at Kapustin Yar in 1946. Returned to East Germany in 1952, worked thereafter as an instructor at military-connected institutions in Dresden until retirement in 1970. Born: 1894. Died: 1979-01-01.
Women (VVS) astronaut group, 1962 - Requirement: female astronauts for Vostok and Voskhod flights, primarily for propaganda purposes. Date: 1962.
Women of Space - The female conquerors of space!
Wood, James Wayne - American pilot astronaut, 1962-1963. Status: Deceased; Active 1962-1963. Born: 1924-08-09. Died: 1990-01-01.
Wood, Nigel Richard - British engineer payload specialist astronaut, 1984-1986. Status: Inactive; Active 1984-1986. Born: 1949-07-21.
Wood, Robert Jackson - American physicist payload specialist astronaut, 1985-1986. Status: Deceased; Active 1985-1986. Born: 1957-06-26. Died: 2009-02-19.
Woodhouse and Taylor - Woodhouse and Taylor.
Woodward, Neil Whitney III - American test pilot mission specialist astronaut, 1998-2008. Status: Inactive; Active 1998-2008. Born: 1962-07-26.
Woolams, Jack - American Bell test pilot, flew XP-59A and XS-1. Killed in an air crash during a practice flight for a race that was to occur the next day. Status: Deceased. Born: 1917. Died: 1946-12-01.
Wooldridge, Dean E - American engineer, co-founder of TRW in 1953, director of TRW STL 1962-on. Born: 1913-05-30. Died: 2006-09-20.
Woomera - Woomera Instrumented Range. After World War II British government recognized the need for a large range to test the incredible array of long-range missile systems then planned. After considering sites in Canada, it was decided that Australia would best meet the projected needs. The Long Range Weapons Establishment was created on 1 April 1947 as a joint British/Australian enterprise. 23 days later the name Woomera (an aboriginal word of atlatl, or spear thrower) was selected for the new town to be built as its administrative center. Woomera town peaked at a population of 6,000 in the 1960's. Thereafter the progressive cancellation of British missile and space projects put Woomera went into sustained decline. However it played a key role in the history of rocketry, including orbital launches or launch attempts by Black Arrow, Sparta, and Europa boosters. First Launch: 1957-02-13. Last Launch: 2010-03-22. Number: 606 .
Woomera HAD - HAD launcher
Woomera LA1 - S launch complex. First Launch: 2002-07-14. Last Launch: 2005-10-09. Number: 2 .
Woomera LA2 - Stonechat, Skylark, Rook, Jaguar, Black Brant, Lorikeet, Long Tom, Kookaburra, HAD, Corella, Cockatoo, Aero High launch complex. Sounding rocket launcher First Launch: 1960-01-01. Last Launch: 1976-06-30. Number: 45 .
Woomera LA2 D - Moraba mobile launcher, LA2 First Launch: 1987-08-24. Last Launch: 1987-08-24. Number: 1 .
Woomera LA2 HRV - Hypersonic launcher, LA2 First Launch: 1960-12-15. Last Launch: 1979-04-04. Number: 41 .
Woomera LA2 N - Nike Launcher, LA2 First Launch: 1987-11-14. Last Launch: 1995-11-20. Number: 12 .
Woomera LA2 SL - Skylark launcher, LA2 First Launch: 1957-02-13. Last Launch: 1979-03-13. Number: 265 .
Woomera LA3 - Launch Area 3
Woomera LA4 - Launch Area 4
Woomera LA5A - Black Knight launch complex. Launch Area 5A First Launch: 1958-09-07. Last Launch: 1962-11-29. Number: 12 .
Woomera LA5B - Black Knight, Black Arrow launch complex. Launch Area 5B First Launch: 1961-06-07. Last Launch: 1971-10-28. Number: 6 .
Woomera LA6A - Europa, Blue Streak launch complex. Launch Area 6A First Launch: 1964-06-04. Last Launch: 1970-06-12. Number: 10 .
Woomera LA8 - Redstone, Aerobee launch complex. Launch Area 8 First Launch: 1966-11-28. Last Launch: 1977-02-23. Number: 30 .
Woomera LA9 - Launch Area 9
Woomera MRL - MRL launcher
Worcester Poly - Worcester Poly.
Worden, Alfred Merrill - American test pilot astronaut 1966-1975. Status: Inactive; Active 1966-1975. Born: 1932-02-07. Spaceflights: 1 . Total time in space: 12.30 days.
World Circling Space Ship - American orbital launch vehicle. Rand study of 1946-1947, in response to the Navy HATV, for a three-stage satellite launcher to be in use by 1952. Development funding was not forthcoming. Status: Design 1946.
World Series - American orbital launch vehicle. In May 1956 the Air Force proposed mating an Atlas A with an Aerobee-Hi upper stage in order to launch a satellite during the International Geophysical Year (1957-1958). The Eisenhower administration selected the Vanguard instead. After Sputnik, an Atlas B with no upper stage orbited the Score satellite as a reply to the Soviet's Sputnik 3. Status: Concept 1956. Gross mass: 82,500 kg (181,800 lb). Payload: 50 kg (110 lb). Thrust: 1,334.50 kN (300,008 lbf).
World Space Observatory Ultraviolet - Alternate name of Spektr-UF (SUV, World Space Observatory Ultraviolet, WSO-UV).
WorldSpace - The WorldSpace project, led by Ethiopian-born Noah Samara, was intended to empower the developing world by providing improved access to information. Its three satellites, Afristar, Asiastar, and Ameristar, were to broadcast digital radio to less developed countries. Small hand-held radios could pick up the 24 to 96 radio channels available on the three L-band beams broadcast by each satellite. On-board processing allows variable bit rates to provide audio quality ranging from monophonic to CD digital. Broadcasters would send their programs to the satellite with a small X-band ground station.
WorldView - American civilian surveillance satellite. DigitalGlobe's WorldView satellite provided highly detailed imagery for precise map creation, change detection and in-depth image analysis. Earth observing satellite built by Ball Aerospace for DigitalGlobe, USA. Launched 2007. Used the BCP-5000 bus. Status: Operational 2007. First Launch: 2007-09-18. Last Launch: 2009-10-08. Number: 2 . Gross mass: 2,500 kg (5,500 lb).
WorldView 2, 3 (WV 2, 3) - Earth observing satellite built by Ball Aerospace for DigitalGlobe, USA. Launched 2009 - 2014. Used the BCP-5000 bus. First Launch: 2009-10-08. Last Launch: 2014-08-13. Number: 2 . Gross mass: 2,800 kg (6,100 lb).
WorldView 4 (WV 4, GeoEye 2) - Earth observing satellite built by Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems (satellite); ITT Corporation (payload) for GeoEye, USA. Launched 2016. Used the LM-900 (LMx small)-Bus bus. First Launch: 2016-11-11. Last Launch: 2016-11-11. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 2,600 kg (5,700 lb).
WorldView-Legion 1, ..., (unk. number) - Earth observing satellite built by SS/Loral for DigitalGlobe, USA.
WorldView-Scout 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 - Earth observing satellite built by KACST Space Research Institute for DigitalGlobe, TAQNIA, KACST Space Research Institute, USA, Saudi Arabia.
WOSE-1 astronaut group, 1985 -
WOSE-2 astronaut group, 1988 -
Woytech - German rocket engineer in WW2; later worked in France at LRBA in the optical tracking group of the target tracking department 1947-1952.
Wozniak, Frank - American engineer. Member of Atlas engineering team. Born: 1916-03-01.
WPLTN - Australian agency. Western Pacific Laser Tracking Network, Australia.
WR - Western Range (was WTR)
WRE - Australian manufacturer of rockets, spacecraft, and rocket engines. Australian Weapons Research Establishment, Australia.
WREN - PocketQube Cubesat from StaDoKo (spinoff company of the University of Aachen).
Wren - Technology satellite for STADOKO UG, Germany. Launched 2013. Used the 1U PocketQube bus. First Launch: 2013-11-21. Last Launch: 2013-11-21. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 0 kg (0 lb).
Wresat - Australian earth atmosphere satellite. Australian Weapons Research Establishment Satellite, launched using surplus US Army Redstone missile, that obtained solar radiation, upper atmosphere data. Built for Australian Weapons Research Establishment (WRE), Australia. Launched 1967. Status: Operational 1967. First Launch: 1967-11-29. Last Launch: 1967-11-29. Number: 1 . Gross mass: 45 kg (99 lb).
Wright - American manufacturer of aircraft and rocket engines. Company originally founded by the Wright Brothers, who built the world's first powered aircraft.
Wright, John David - American manager, went to work for Thompson Products in 1933 and rose through the ranks until he became Chairman of the Board of Thompson-Ramo-Wooldridge (TRW) in 1958. Born: 1905.
Wright, Keith Charles - American engineer military spaceflight engineer astronaut, 1979-1985. Director, Satellite Control Facility in Sunnyvale. Later with Sparta Corporation, El Segundo, California. Status: Inactive; Active 1979-1985. Born: 1947-08-31.
WS 107A-1 - Alternate designation for Atlas A.
WS 133A - Alternate designation for Minuteman 1B.
WS 133A - Alternate designation for Minuteman 1A.
WS 133B - Alternate designation for Minuteman 2.
WS 140A - Alternate designation for SRAM.
WS-104A - Alternate designation for Navaho G-38.
WS-117 - Weapons System 117 was develped from 1955 as the first US military space system. The Atlas ICBM would use a second stage, later dubbed Agena, to boost a variety of military payloads into orbit. These covered photo reconnaisance, early warning, elint and radarsats, biological tests, and even manned missions. The program later added the Thor booster for early tests. The deep black Corona / KH / Keyhole payloads with recoverable film capsules supported American surveillance and mapping of targets in the Soviet Union into the 1970's. The less successful, though still secret, Midas, Samos, and Discoverer series were cancelled by the mid-1960's. Most aspects of the program were completely classified until the 1990's, and many details are redacted to this day.
WS-124A Flying Cloud - American balloon reconnaissance system.
WS-199 - American umbrella for several strategic vehicle test projects in the late 1950's.
WS-199 - Alternate designation for Bold Orion.
WS199C - Alternate designation for High Virgo.
WSF - American materials science satellite. The Wake Shield Facility was released and later retrieved by the Shuttle in a single mission. It generated an ultra-hard vacuum in its wake for production of semiconductors and other experiments. Material research, retrievable satellite operated by NASA, USA. Launched 1994 - 1996. Status: Operational 1994. First Launch: 1994-02-03. Last Launch: 1996-11-19. Number: 3 . Gross mass: 1,935 kg (4,265 lb).
WSF 4 - Material research, retrievable satellite operated by NASA, USA.
WSMR - Abbreviation for White Sands Missile Range
WSO-UV - Alternate name of Spektr-UF (SUV, World Space Observatory Ultraviolet, WSO-UV).
WSPG - Abbreviation for White Sands Proving Ground
WST - American visible astronomy satellite. Study 2002. 6 m deep space telescope slated to replace the Hubble Space Telescope from 2010. Status: Study 2002.
WTR - Abbreviation for Western Test Range
WTR Launch Area - Alternate name for Vandenberg WTR.
Wu ChengKang - Chinese Engineer. Specialist in design of heat shields for nuclear warheads and recoverable spacecraft.
Wu Jie - Chinese pilot taikonaut 1996-on. Status: Active 1996-on. Born: 1963-10-26.
Wueschheim - US base in the 1980's for 31 BGM-109G ground-launched cruise missiles. The launchers and missiles were withdrawn and destroyed under the INF Treaty with the Soviet Union.
Wueterich - German rocket engineer in WW2. Later worked in France at LRBA in the drafting group of the target acquisition department from 1947-1952.
Wukong - Alternate name of DAMPE (Wukong).
WUPPE - Wisconsin Ultraviolet PhotoPolarimter Experiment (Astro package)
Wurster, Carl - German expert in rockets during World War II. Stayed in Germany after the war. Born: 1907. Died: 1985-01-01.
Wurster, Hermann - German Engineer. Chief pilot at Messerschmitt, technical designer of the surface-to-air missile Enzian. Born: 1907-09-25. Died: 1985-10-17.
Wurtsmith AFB - The base was used by the Army Air Corps under tha names of Loud-Reames Aviation Field (1923-1942) and Oscoda Army Air Field (1942-1951). It was received its current name in 1951 when a he first of a succession of Air Defence Command squadrons were based there. Following runway and hangar improvements, B-52 bomber wings also occupied the base from 1961. In 1973 the Air Force base was closed and the facility began a new life as the public Oscoda-Wurtsmith Airport. First Launch: 1978-12-13. Last Launch: 1978-12-13. Number: 1 .
WUTC - American agency. WUTC, USA.
Wuzhai - Alternate name for Taiyuan launch site.
WV 2, 3 - Alternate name of WorldView 2, 3 (WV 2, 3).
WV 4 - Alternate name of WorldView 4 (WV 4, GeoEye 2).
WWII - World War II
Wyatt, DeMarquis D - American engineer, at NASA 1944-1973, specialized in supersonic research in propulsion system installations, from 1958 management positions at headquarters. Born: 1919-09-06. Died: 1996-08-13.

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