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Johnny Rocket

Johnny Rocket

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Johnny Rocket

Länge:
130 Seiten
1 Stunde
Freigegeben:
Mar 1, 2021
ISBN:
9781662406737
Format:
Buch

Beschreibung

Colonel James Baker, a stoic top-gun jet pilot, signs on to testing NASA’s newly designed spaceship. With the success of this next test flight, the spaceship Endeavor will undergo final transformation into a starship, taking astronauts to distant galaxies. The test flight is a success while in space; it’s during reentry when Colonel Baker is reminded of the meaning of test flight. Time is now running out for Colonel Baker. As this race-against-time adventure ensues, the suspense rises with lively action when the colonel’s children, Johnny and Becky, set out to rescue their father. Fasten your seat belt, and prepare yourself for a sky-screaming roller-coaster ride of a lifetime. Alternately funny, suspenseful, and chaotic, this is one family adventure you won’t want to miss.

Freigegeben:
Mar 1, 2021
ISBN:
9781662406737
Format:
Buch

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Johnny Rocket - Daryl Hemmerich

cover.jpg

Johnny Rocket

Daryl Hemmerich

Copyright © 2021 Daryl Hemmerich

All rights reserved

First Edition

PAGE PUBLISHING, INC.

Conneaut Lake, PA

First originally published by Page Publishing 2021

YAF001000 YOUNG ADULT FICTION/Action & Adventure/General

YAF000000 YOUNG ADULT FICTION/General

Cover art 2021 Tony Caruso

ISBN 978-1-6624-0672-0 (pbk)

ISBN 978-1-6624-0673-7 (digital)

Printed in the United States of America

Table of Contents

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 1

A loud, violent noise suddenly fills the skies over NASA Cape Canaveral. A top-secret hypersonic aircraft, the X-43A scramjet, is coming in for a landing.

There’s a lot of activity throughout the compound, a typical day at NASA. Inside the main building—personnel hurry about their business, occasionally stopping to talk with each other.

Colonel James Baker rounds the corner into the main corridor, flanked by his associates and friends, General Frank Sternie and Colonel Guy Nelson.

In his forties, Colonel Baker is a handsome man with dark hair and an air of sophistication and confidence about him. He looks dashing in his decorated military uniform.

I’m really looking forward to Friday’s test flight, General. Assuming all goes well with the new external protective shield, Colonel Nelson and I will be testing NASA’s first starship within two years.

In his fifties, General Sternie is a stoic and handsome man with brown hair and a touch of silver at his temples. He sports a military jacket with a multitude of stars, stripes, and medals.

Gentlemen, what I’m about to say doesn’t get repeated. That’s an order.

The three officers round another corner into the next corridor. Colonel Baker glances over at Colonel Nelson, who is looking back at him.

The starship test flight has been upgraded to an actual mission. We’ll discuss this in greater detail later. For now the focus is on Friday’s test flight. The performance of the external protective shield during Friday’s test flight is critical to the starship mission.

General, the plans for the starship reflect eight seats in the cabin—why so many? asks Colonel Nelson.

In his forties, Colonel Nelson is a good-looking officer and a gentleman with dark hair and a trained physique, whose uniform fits him like a glove.

Longer missions, more crew needed. When I said we will be discussing the starship later, I didn’t mean a couple minutes, says the general sarcastically.

All right, just one more question. Suppose we were on a year-long mission now, suggests Colonel Nelson, how many additional crew members would the starship accommodate?

"Twenty additional crew, perhaps more. Again, gentlemen, we’ll be discussing the starship at another time. Save your questions until after Friday’s test flight of Endeavor."

Colonel Baker and Colonel Nelson look at each other again. By the expressions on their faces, they indeed have a lot more questions.

"All right, then. Colonel Baker can get all the kinks out of Endeavor during Friday’s test flight, before she goes through final transformation into a starship," suggests Colonel Nelson.

General Sternie assures both his associates that the kinks have been worked out. Well, gentlemen, I’m sure you’ll be very pleased with the briefing this morning. Everything appears to be moving along just fine. He glances over at Colonel Nelson. No kinks.

The officers approach a conference room—entering through double doors—leading into a large room where anxious associates greet them.

Let’s get started, shall we? suggests General Sternie.

Everyone quickly takes their seats. The lights are dimmed, and Robert, a scientist and design team member for the spaceship, points at a projected image of a spacecraft at the front of the room. "Ladies and gentlemen…the most sophisticated flying machine in the world. Meet Endeavor."

A brief round of applause fills the room—

Complicated?—continues Robert—Yes, but mostly for our budget department.

Everyone laughs, with General Sternie laughing the loudest.

Better close the doors, requests the general. The president’s going to retire me early when he gets the price tag for this bird. He removes his jacket. I’ll need to break the news to him gently, perhaps over a bottle of wine. There’s a brief round of laughter.

Robert further discusses some of the spaceship’s design and how smart the new system is. "This spacecraft is as easy to fly as a commercial jetliner. The obvious exterior modifications to the wing design enable the spacecraft to now fly instead of simply gliding. Airfoils with complex asymmetrical shapes are used to minimize the drastic increase in drag. Similar designs are used for hypersonic flight—NASA’s X-43A hypersonic scramjet is an excellent example of where we are ultimately going with the overall modifications. As you know, scramjet soars at ten times faster than the speed of sound. With the completion of Endeavor’s metamorphosis over the next two years from a space truck to a starship, she will be the fastest flying machine ever built. Additionally, our new upgraded computers, both here at Mission Control and on board Endeavor, will enable us to launch and fly this incredible machine by remote control, without a crew. That will keep our astronauts out of harm’s way."

And out of work, Colonel Baker can’t resist adding. Everyone chuckles at his remark.

That’s good, Colonel, says the general, and he laughs again.

With a press of a button, the image zooms in for a more detail-oriented diagram of the spacecraft. An attractive female scientist, Tina, stands to assist her colleague. Tina pushes her long auburn hair back away from her face and over her shoulder before speaking.

Despite the fact the ship can be operated remotely, NASA has chosen to have a flight crew and operations on board its spacecraft with every mission, to perform research and other important tasks. In the event of a mechanical malfunction, computers aren’t capable of handling a wrench or screwdriver. There must always be a flight crew and operations on board to fix such a problem, and to fly the spacecraft manually if need be. Of course, we don’t anticipate any problems whatsoever.

Geez…demoted to mechanic before I even get my first mission, replies Colonel Nelson.

Don’t worry, Colonel, you won’t be getting your hands dirty. You’ll just sit back and enjoy the ride. General Sternie reassures him.

Tina presses the button on the remote control, and several additional images of Endeavor appear.

"The original shuttle fleet was not designed to go beyond low-earth orbit. With the necessary modifications over the next two years, Endeavor will be transformed into a starship with the ability to return to the moon and beyond. With a minimum escape velocity of 25,000 mph and maintaining, we can reach the moon in about two days, Mars in two months."

Not using conventional fuel, suggests Colonel Baker.

No, a propulsion system using a combination of nuclear and cosmic radiation, says Tina. And lunar landing, on any planet in two years.

A brief round of applause and light chatter fills the room.

Assuming the next-generation spacecraft will have vertical takeoff and landing capabilities, what other modifications will there be? asks Colonel Baker.

Tina offers several more visual aids with a push of a button on the remote control.

The cabin will be a pressurized pod suspended on a gimbal. Mounted to the gimbal will be a multi-gyro system working together and feeding information to the computer. Another integrated and extremely complex system within the pod is the micro-g-environment. The system activates itself with extreme acceleration, a virtual absence of gravity, no feeling of acceleration. Astronauts will feel as if they are driving a race car during escape velocity. The pod, and all the integrated systems that make it function, will continue to perform if the computer fails or is damaged.

All right, we’re getting a little ahead of ourselves here. As exciting as all this is, we’ll need to keep this morning’s meeting focused on the protective shield. I’ll also remind everyone that all discussions about the space program are classified, says General Sternie. "Colonel Baker will be taking Endeavor beyond low-earth orbit, testing the performance of the new external protective shield. Not only does this new shield protect the spacecraft from the intense friction and heat during takeoff and reentry, but it also protects astronauts from cosmic radiation while traveling in deep space. The new external shield is one of several modifications that the spacecraft will go through for the mission after this one."

Tina zooms in on the external thermal protective shield.

"The shield is seamless and invisible, with repair

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