Propulsion Aspects of Unmanned and Manned Lunar Landings



Direct vertical descent and descent from an intermediate
lunar parking orbit are discussed. The difference in philosophy between
langing a payload of instruments and of humans is considered in some
detail. The " human return to eartli " problem is separated from the
" mission success-failure " criteria.
Some anticipated performances are given in terms of payload ratio
for various propulsion-cehicle vcaling constants for botli forms of descent.
Manned descent from parking orbit is discussed with respect to the
general problem of maximising the probability of human return. .Minimum
impulse, high safety and long low approaches are mentioned. In conclusion
the problem of abort during the final powered descent is considered for
fixed and variable geometry vehicles.

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Published by INGV, Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - ISSN: 2037-416X