The Skylab cluster

------- To be revised --------

General information

The S-IVB 200 (serial number 212) was selected to be converted into an orbital workshop. This stage, designed to hold cryogenic propellants to feed its J-2 thrust engine was refitted and turned into a habitat for a crew of three. All necessary life support systems as well as the equipment to do onboard scientific experiments had to be installed. To became fully functional, the orbital workshop must be provided with an airlock for EVA, a docking port. A separate Solar telescope would be attached as well to conduct solar observations. In the original plans, in which the Saturn IB was selected as the primary launch vehicle, Skylab would have been constructed in space and items like the Solar telescope would have been launched separately and attached to the orbital workshop. But as soon as the Saturn V became operational it made more sense to construct the whole cluster in advance. The

Main parts of the Skylab cluster

From bottom up:
  1. Orbital workshop with its solar panels
  2. Instrument unit
  3. The airlock module
  4. The Multiple Docking Adapter
  5. The Telescope Mount
  6. The interstage, a conical shaped connecting ring between Skylab and the S-II stage


Skylab ground track during Ascent and orbital coast.

This picture shows the ground track of the Skylab cluster during the boost phase and the first 5 revolutions.

Skylab in launch configuration
Exploded view

Skylab Front view

Skylab aft view

Skylab top view

Skylab bottom view

Skylab side view

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Copyright 2005 by   Sander Panhuyzen
All pictures and drawings contained on and through these pages are the author's, unless otherwise noted. No unauthorized reproduction without permission.