Saturn V | Facts On The World’s Most Powerful Rocket!
Apollo Moon Rocket
Here you can enjoy learning Cool Facts about the amazing rocket which sent astronauts to the Moon! Built by NASA as part of the Apollo program, the Saturn V rocket is still the most powerful rocket that has ever flown successfully. It also launched the Skylab space station. Standing at over 110 metres tall, and weighing nearly 3 million kilograms, without the Saturn V astronauts would never have been able to land on the Moon!
15 Fun Facts About The Mighty Saturn V Moon Rocket!
- NASA’s iconic Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB), at the Kennedy Space Center, was specifically built to assemble the HUGE Saturn V rockets.
- During development the rocket was called the C-5. This refers to the 5 large F-1 first stage engines. The F-1 is still the world’s largest liquid fuelled rocket engine.
- At 110.6 metres (363 feet) tall, the Saturn V is the tallest rocket ever built. That is taller than a 36 story building!
- Fully loaded with rocket propellant, the Saturn V weighed nearly 3 million kilograms (6.5 million pounds)! The same as 400 elephants! How crazy is that?!
- The Saturn V used for the Apollo missions had three stages. Each stage fired its engines until its fuel was gone. The stage would then separate.
- The first two stages fell back to Earth and burnt up or landed in the ocean. The third stage stayed in space or crashed into the Moon! Five of these third stages are still in space orbiting the Sun near Earth.
- The first stage used a rocket fuel known as RP-1. The second and third stages used super cooled liquid hydrogen as the rocket fuel. All three stages used liquid oxygen to burn the fuel.
- The powerful first stage generated 7.8 million pounds of thrust at lift off! Even the Space Shuttle could only generate a maximum of 6.8 million during launch.
- During the Apollo 15, 16 and 17 missions, the rocket lifted 140,500 kilograms (310,000 lbs) into Earth orbit. A record which still stands!
- The Saturn V successfully launched 13 times. Sending 9 Apollo missions to the Moon and the Skylab space station into Earth orbit.
- The equivalent Soviet moon rocket was the N1 rocket. The N1 had a larger and more powerful first stage, but four test flights all failed.
- Currently the most powerful rocket in the world is SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy. It’s payload to low Earth orbit (LEO) is less than 50% of the Saturn V’s.
- Over 50 years since its first launch in 1967, the Saturn V is still the tallest, heaviest, widest and most powerful rocket ever to successfully reach orbit.
- New rockets are being designed, such as the Space Launch System (SLS) and SpaceX’s BFR, which are meant to be even more powerful that the mighty moon rocket!
- If you want to see a Saturn V for yourself, there are 3 full scale rockets on display at NASA's Kennedy Space Center, the Johnson Space Center and the Space & Rocket Center in Alabama.