Encyclopedia Astronautica
1967.12.08 - TsKBEM confirms Mishin's decision to cancel Soyuz VI


Mishin is away on 'cure' for his drinking problem. A 'Podlipki Soviet' is held at TsKBEM. The issue is cancellation of Kozlov's 7K-VI military Soyuz. Bushuyev, Chertok, Okhapkin, Feoktistov are in favour of cancelling it. Opposed are Karas, Shcheulov, Kostonin, Gaidukov, and the various military representatives at the meeting. It was now six years since OKB-1 was required to put a military manned spacecraft into space - and, factually speaking, nothing has been done. Military experiments proposed for each manned flight by OKB-1 to date had been rejected on various grounds - no weight, no space aboard the spacecraft. Good progress has been made with Kozlov's VI and Chelomei's Almaz - now they've managed to kill the VI, and Mishin and Kerimov are constantly denigrating Almaz (saying it is too heavy, and unsuited for the purpose). The whole thing is a replay of the LK-1 situation. In 1963, a resolution was issued to send a Soviet man around the moon. Instead, after two years of development, Korolev managed to get Chelomei's LK-1 lunar spacecraft cancelled, and started all over with his own L1.

On 13 October 1967 Mishin began his efforts to kill the VI program. From the point of view of the 'Podpliki Mafia', Kozlov had insulted them by redesigning the Soyuz VI in light of the defects of their 7K-OK design. They were also fundamentally opposed to the use of radio-isotope power sources, and raised doubts about the 800 mm hatch cut into the heat shield (as they did in the case of Chelomeiís VA). Mishin wrote a letter to Afanasyev and Smirnov, urging them to cancel the 7K-VI program. In the place of Kozlov's VI Mishin proposed his own project for an Soyuz-derived OIS orbital station. In a November 1967 meeting between Mishin and Kozlov Mishin demanded the abandonment of Kozlovís 7K-VI project. Kozlov rejected this and subsequently appealed to Kamanin. Through various complex machinations Mishin seized control of the project on 8 December 1967 and promised that the first OIS would be launched in 1969. Mishinís revised project was reaffirmed in May 1968. Having won the battle, Mishin lost interest. OKB-1 would pursue it at a desultory pace until it was finally cancelled in 1969.

In the place of Kozlov's VI Mishin proposed his own project for an orbital station 11F730 Soyuz VI. This would consist of on orbital block 11F731 OB-VI and a transport spacecraft 11F732 7K-S. Through various complex machinations Mishin seized control of the project on 8 December 1967. The new Soyuz VI was designated the OIS 11F730. It would be launched into a lower-inclination 51.6 degree orbit at 250 x 270 km, and would use solar panels in the place of the nuclear power sources.

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