At NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, preparations are underway to sandblast and paint the 290-foot-high water tower at Launch Pad 39B. Scaffolding surrounds the tower and a special covering has been placed around the tank.
The water towers at Launch Complex 39, which includes pad A and B, were part of the sound suppression system used during space shuttle launches. Water stored in the 300,000-gallon tank would be released just prior to main engine ignition and flow by gravity to special mobile launcher platform (MLP) outlets. Nine seconds after shuttle liftoff, the peak flow rate was 900,000 gallons per minute and helped to protect the orbiter and payloads from being damaged by acoustical energy reflected from the MLP during liftoff. Photo Credit: NASA/Jim Grossmann