The Rocket Library

Rocket Library, the big set!

In 2018 I was doing an international commute, and wanted something I could work on effectively while travelling. Eurostar is pretty comfortable, (particularly in standard premium), and the new laptop was seriously powerful, but I’ve never found it easy to work with a touch pad, and there wasn’t enough space for a mouse.

 So I came up with the idea of tidying up the various real spacecraft I have worked on, and assembling sets of images rendered perspective free, to a standard scale, which would make it easy to clearly show the different sizes of the various spacecraft.

This soon became the Rocket Library project!

A collection of most of the rockets I have modelled, all done to the same scale.
A collection of most of the rockets I have modelled, all done to the same scale.

(Click for a larger version.)

It soon became clear that this was going to be handy to split into different sets of rockets as well, like this:

Spacecraft: The Big Beasts!
Spacecraft: The Big Beasts!

Here a set of the larger ones. Or how about a set of three spaceplanes?

Three Spaceplanes. US Shuttle, Energia Buran, and the British HOTOL.
Three Spaceplanes. US Shuttle, Energia Buran, and the British HOTOL.

I also found it fun to add some fictional spacecraft into the mix, such as the Discovery from 2001.

The Discovery from 2001, with N1, Big Ben, and the Saturn V for comparison.
The Discovery from 2001, with N-1, Big Ben, and the Saturn V for comparison.

Or how about gathering the various British rockets together?

Black Arrow, Blue Streak, Skylark and Black Knight, lined up against a London Bus for scale
Black Arrow, Blue Streak, Skylark and Black Knight, lined up against a London Bus for scale

Again the reminder, click the pictures for larger versions!

HOTOL plus British Rockets, Skylark, Black Arrow, and Blue Streak.
HOTOL plus British Rockets, Skylark, Black Arrow, and Blue Streak.

At the time of writing, this is the biggest set in one image…

Rocket Library, the big set!
Rocket Library, the big set!

You might like to see how many you can identify! Some are rather obscure…

Don’t scroll down if you don’t want to see the answers.

Full list of rockets in the big set…

 

 

Keep scrolling…

 

 

 

Keep scrolling…

 

The list!

  • Skylark
  • Black Knight
  • Black Arrow
  • V2
  • Canadian Arrow
  • SpaceX Falcon 1
  • Goddard-L16
  • Blue Streak
  • Scout
  • India’s SLV-3
  • Mercury / Redstone
  • Vega
  • Europa
  • Sputnik 1 R7
  • Delta II
  • Ariane 1
  • Angara A5
  • Energia M
  • Soyuz
  • Proton
  • Zenit-2
  • Buran / Energia
  • US Space Shuttle
  • Saturn 1B
  • Soviet N-11 (Unbuilt)
  • SpaceX Falcon 9
  • Saturn V
  • Soviet N-1
  • Soviet UR-700 (Unbuilt)
  • Soviet Vulkan (Energia based, Unbuilt)

3 thoughts on “The Rocket Library”

  1. Hi, Nick. Nice work here – always interesting to see these size comparisons, especially for some of the more obscure rockets.

    One comment though on your “British rockets versus a Routemaster” image – I wonder if there has been a bit of an Imperial vs Metric problem 🙂

    That is, the Black Arrow looks very small to me for a rocket that successfully orbited a satellite. Indeed, doing a bit of Wiki-searching, I see that the Black Arrow was 13 metres high, while the Blue Streak was 18.75 metres, Black Knight 10.2–11.6 metres, and Skylark 7.6–12.8 metres. These all seem pretty much in proportion.

    But the Routemaster seems way too big. Indeed, it’s height was just 4.38 metres, so much smaller than any of the rockets. In Imperial units though, it was 14 feet 4.5 inches, and if you took that to be its height in metres then yes, it would be just a bit bigger than the Black Arrow 😉

    Anyway, again, nice work.

    best,
    Mark McCaughrean
    European Space Agency

    1. Thanks Mark – you may well be right. I’ve actually started a spreadsheet to track and check all my rocket’s dimensions, and that they are lit consistently.

  2. Also working on scale modelling, but in LEGO 🙂

    https://i.imgur.com/I8hDeLe.jpg

    A member of the community is currentyl modelling N1 in LEGO, do you have any original source of the fairing separtion on your N1 Blok B and C model? It is the first time i saw that for that model
    Cheers

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.