Encyclopedia Astronautica
Almaz



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Almaz 3
Rare drawing of Salyut 3 Almaz space station. From left to right, docking port surrounded by manoeuvre engines and solar panels; main station body; forward ring with orientation engines.
Credit: Dmitry Pieson
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Almaz forward view
Forward view of Almaz space station - original configuration, Note crew couches in cutaway view of VA re-entry capsule interior. The Almaz was actually flown without the VA. Also note the orientation engines just below the VA attachment collar.
Credit: © Dietrich Haeseler
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Soyuz VI / OIS
Mishin's version of Soyuz VI with OIS light space station (conceptual drawing based on description).
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Soyuz R
Soyuz R military research laboratory (conceptual drawing based on description).
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Soyuz PPK
Soyuz PPK antisatellite interceptor (conceptual drawing based on description).
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Military Soyuz
Comparison of military variants of Soyuz. From left to right: Soyuz P, Soyuz PPK, Soyuz R, Soyuz VI (Kozlov), Soyuz VI/OIS (Mishin)
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Soyuz P
Soyuz P antisatellite interceptor (conceptual drawing based on description).
Credit: © Mark Wade
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TKS model
TKS model. Close-up of docking system at base.
Credit: © Dietrich Haeseler
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TKS model
TKS model. From left to right note launch escape system, VA re-entry capsule, main body with longitudinal fuel tanks and stowed solar arrays, docking system and EVA hand rails at base.
Credit: © Dietrich Haeseler
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TKS model
TKS model. Close-up of main manoeuvre engines (in triangular housings top and bottom) and reaction control system engine cluster.
Credit: © Dietrich Haeseler
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TKS VA capsule
The landing capsule of the three crew military TKS transport/resupply spacecraft for the Almaz space station. Called ‘our Apollo’ by cosmonaut Leonov. After separation of the capsule from the Almaz the retrorocket assembly at top deorbited the capsule. TKS capsules (VA is the Russian acronym) flew 13 times between 1976 and 1983, ten times in capsule tests, three times as part of complete TKS spacecraft which docked with Salyut space stations. They were never flown manned.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz interior
Close-up view of interior of Almaz space station. Note large white film cassettes of reconnaissance camera, and cosmonaut at the control station of the camera systems.
Credit: © Dietrich Haeseler
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Almaz T1
Almaz T1 radarsat version of Almaz. Note that the solar panels have been enlarged and moved forward to the small-diameter section of the station. With the elimination of the man-tended capability, the aft airlock seems to have been removed. Radar data from the large earth-facing antenna are beamed to earth via Potok geostationary satellites using the flat rectangular antenna mounted on the vertical mast at the front of the station.
Credit: Khrunichev
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Rear view of Almaz
Rear view of Almaz model. Note the two manoeuvring engines flanking the docking collar, the stowed solar panels, and the guides for aft interstage separation
Credit: © Dietrich Haeseler
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Almaz station engine
Almaz station orientation engine.
Credit: © Dietrich Haeseler
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RD-0225 Almaz engine
RD-0225 main propulsion engine for Almaz space station
Credit: © Dietrich Haeseler
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Almaz
Forward view of Almaz space station - original configuration. From left to right note stowed solar panels, sunshade for Agat reconnaissance camera extending below first station compartment, VA re-entry capsule and its launch escape rocket.
Credit: © Dietrich Haeseler
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TKS Large
Obsolete drawing of the TKS space station ferry according to information available ca. 1987. At that time it was known in the west as the 'Heavy Kosmos' spacecraft.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz forward hatch
Forward view of the Almaz. In the original design, the forward tunnel would have led to the aft hatch of the VA crew return capsule. The station was flown without this capsule, a Soyuz being used to shuttle them to the station and back to earth. In the OPS-2 design this hatch led to a forward airlock, with a second docking collar for either TKS or Soyuz ferries.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz right exterior
Aft view of the Almaz, showing the propellant tanks and the '11F668' article number on its side. While this number was used for Almaz-T radar satellites, this station, stored at MAI, has the internal systems of the Phase 1 Almaz. It may have been the s/n 100 ground simulator converted to an Almaz-T mock-up.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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TKS capsule hatch
The crew of the TKS went from the descent capsule to the main spacecraft cabin through this hatch in the heat shield of the capsule. The central crew couch folded up to give access to the hatch. A similar arrangement was to be used in Gemini B for the USAF MOL (Manned Orbiting Laboratory).
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz airlock
Side view of Almaz showing transition section globular air lock, with the KSI capsule airlock jutting out at an angle below, while the EVA tunnel extends at an angle to the top.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Kosmos 186/188
Kosmos 186/188 docking. Soyuz-R and OIS would have had a similar appearance.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz forward hatch
Almaz transition section airlock, with the female docking cone for use with the Soyuz or TKS. At the bottom is the KSI airlock, used to jettison small capsules to return film to earth during the flight. The EVA hatch for spacewalks was located on the ceiling, out of sight.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz forward panel
Another Almaz control station, located in the station forward of the camera. Purpose unknown.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz right hatch
Almaz forward tunnel. In the original design this led to the hatch in the heat shield of the VA crew return capsule.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz comm panel
Communications console of the BIPS On-board Information Distribution System of the Almaz, including keyboard. This was mounted to the left of the main space station control console, and allowed encrypted teletype communications with the earth as well as burst update of plans and procedures from the ground.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz main console
Close-up of the main console for operating the station, with the familiar Soyuz-type globe, clock, and external television/radar scope instruments.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz camera station
The crew station for the reconnaissance cameras of the Almaz military space station. The eyepiece of the Sokol-1 PKO Circular Observing Periscope is at top, followed by the enormous 340 cm diameter view plate of the POU-11 Panoramic Survey Unit. The operator is looking into the sight of the OD-5 Telescope Optical System. Hand controls for pointing of the cameras and triggering of the cameras are at either side of the OD-5 sight. The panel to the left of the POU-11 display contains typical Soyuz instrumentation: clock, earth globe instrument showing current station position, displays of the Igla docking system, and a multipurpose television monitor of the Albatros external television system. To the operator's left are panels of the BIPS On-board Information Distribution System.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz right exterior
Aft view of the Almaz, showing the airlock, ringed by propellant tanks. The KSI capsule ejection airlock juts out below the main docking hatch. A red plastic cover is seen over the engine bell of one of the two RD-0225 main engines. The downlink antenna of the Grafit communications system is on the lower left.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz main console
The main console for operating the Almaz space station, placed to the left of the camera operation console. The familiar instruments found in Soyuz and the civilian Salyut space stations are all present - clockwise from upper left: The Albatros combined video / radar display for rendezvous and docking, and on Almaz, for external views of the station; the clock; the earth globe instrument for displaying position over the earth; the controls for calling up automatic spacecraft command sequences.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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TKS
Obsolete drawing of the TKS space station ferry according to information available ca. 1987. At that time it was known in the west as the 'Heavy Kosmos' spacecraft.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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TKS BSO
The BSO (Bloka Skhoda s Orbiti - Deorbit Block) mounted on top of the VA capsule weighed 450 kg and allowed the capsule to manoeuvre and orient itself after separation from the FGB for retrofire and return to the earth.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz cutaway
The Almaz military station was first successfully launched into space as Salyut 3 in June 1974. The one meter diameter 'Agat' telescope could photograph airfields and missile complexes. There were also infrared and topographical cameras. A Nudelman cannon provided an active defence system in the event of an attack by an Apollo spacecraft. The Soviet military, based on the results of the Salyut 3 and 5 Almaz flights, lost interest in manned military space stations.
Credit: Videokosmos
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Almaz
Obsolete drawing showing suspected appearance of Almaz space station, ca. 1992.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz
An Almaz station being prepared for flight at the Khrunichev Factory in Moscow.
Credit: Khrunichev
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Almaz EVA panel
The Almaz space station’s instrument panel in the small diameter section for controlling and observing extra-vehicular activity. A television monitor of the Albatros system provides views of the exterior of the station. This was mounted on the opposite wall across from the main control station.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Soyuz 7K-T
Credit: © Mark Wade
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TKS capsule exterior
The landing capsule of the three crew military TKS transport/resupply spacecraft for the Almaz space station. Called ‘our Apollo’ by cosmonaut Leonov. After separation of the capsule from the Almaz the retrorocket assembly at top deorbited the capsule. TKS capsules (VA is the Russian acronym) flew 13 times between 1976 and 1983, ten times in capsule tests, three times as part of complete TKS spacecraft which docked with Salyut space stations. They were never flown manned.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Panel Soyuz 7K-OK
Control panel of the initial earth orbit version of Soyuz.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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TKS capsule
TKS capsule at Khrunichev factory.
Credit: Khrunichev
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TKS capsule interior
The right control panel of the TKS. The earth globe instrument, also used in Vostok, Salyut, Almaz, and Soyuz, showed the crew at all times their position over the earth. It also allowed them to determine their landing site in the case of a manual re-entry or loss of communications with the ground.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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TKS capsule interior
Left control panel of the descent capsule of the TKS spacecraft. The TKS crew instruments were assembled from the same building blocks as those used in the Soyuz series of spacecraft. The standard clock, used since Vostok, is in the top middle of the panel. The large central panel was used to call up sequences of automated spacecraft procedures.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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TKS capsule interior
At the junction of the left and right instrument panels of the TKS was a Vzor optical device, as used in Vostok and Soyuz. The Vzor allowed the crew to line up the spacecraft for retrofire and return to earth even if all other spacecraft systems failed.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Soyuz 7K-T
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Soyuz VI (sketch)
Drawing from an article by Samara chief designer Kozlov showing a Soyuz-VI-like spacecraft with two nuclear thermal generators, with the radiation shadow zones indicated.
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Lunar Spacecraft
Comparison of Chelomei manned spacecraft. Left to right: Chelomei LK-1 circumlunar spacecraft with UR-500K third stage. Chelomei LK-3 lunar landing spacecraft. Chelomei TKS space station resupply tug. Competing Korolev Soyuz 7K-L1 circumlunar spacecraft with Block D translunar injection stage and UR-500K third stage.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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TKS Manned Ferry
TKS manned space station ferry.
Credit: © Mark Wade
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Almaz model
Model of Almaz station as flown in Phase 1 at the Chelomei Bureau.
Credit: Andy Salmon
The only manned military space station to have ever flown, it served only to prove that manned stations provided no cost-effective substitute to unmanned military satellites. Derivatives of the design continue in service into the 21st Century as modules of the Salyut, Mir, and International Space Stations.

In December 1962 Sergei Korolev released his draft project for a versatile manned spacecraft, the Soyuz. Korolev understood very well that financing of the scale required could only come from the Ministry of Defence. Therefore his draft project proposed two additional modifications of the Soyuz: the Soyuz P (Perekhvatchik, Interceptor) space interceptor and the Soyuz R (Razvedki, intelligence) command-reconnaissance spacecraft. The VVS and the Strategic Rocket Forces supported these variants of the Soyuz. They were fully aware that the US Air Force's Manned Orbiting Laboratory was in the advance concept stage (it would be approved for development on December 10, 1963). But Korolev had no time to work on what were to him Soyuz ‘side-lines'. In 1963 his OKB-1 was fully occupied with work on the Voskhod and N1 projects.

Therefore he decided that while OKB-1 Kaliningrad would concentrate on development of the Soyuz-A circumlunar spacecraft, the military projects Soyuz-P and Soyuz-R would be ‘subcontracted' to OKB-1 filial number 3, based in Samara (then Kuibishev), headed by Chief Designer Dmitri Ilyich Kozlov.

The Soyuz-R system consisted of two separately launched spacecraft derived from the Soyuz design, with the docked complex having a total mass of 13 tonnes. The small orbital station 11F71 would be equipped with photo-reconnaissance and ELINT equipment. To dock with the 11F71 station Samara developed the transport spacecraft 11F72 Soyuz 7K-TK. Soyuz-R was included by the Defence Ministry in the 1964-1969 five-year space reconnaissance plan, issued on 18 June 1964.

Vladimir Nikolaevich Chelomei headed a competing space design bureau OKB-52 and was Korolev's arch-rival. He had prospered in the early 1960's when he was backed by Khrushchev. On 12 October 1964, only two days before the overthrow of his patron, Chelomei obtained permission to begin development of a larger military space station, the Almaz. This 20 tonne station would take three cosmonauts to orbit in a single launch of his UR-500K Proton rocket. Therefore in 1965 there were two competing projects in development for the same mission - Almaz and Soyuz-R.

In June 1965 Gemini 4 conducted the first American manned military experiments. At the same time the US Air Force's Manned Orbital Laboratory was on the verge of being given its final go-ahead. These events caused a bit of a panic among the Soviet military, where the Soyuz-R and Almaz projects were in the very earliest stages of design and would not fly until 1968 at the earliest.

On 24 August 1965 urgent measures were ordered to test manned military techniques in orbit at the earliest possible date. Kozlov was to fly by 1967 a military research variant of the Soyuz. The new spacecraft was designated the 7K-VI by Kozlov and had the project code name ‘Zvezda'.

In January 1966 Korolev died unexpectedly and OKB-1 was leaderless. Chelomei obtained a decision that the Kozlov's Soyuz-R space station would be cancelled and the Almaz would take its place. Almaz was assigned the 11F71 index number previously allocated to the Soyuz-R station, and Kozlov was ordered to hand over to Chelomei all of the work completed to that date. However at the same time the leadership directed that Kozlov's Soyuz-R 7K-TK ferry continue in development to transport crews to the Almaz. In Samara, work continued with release of the technical documentation of the 7K-TK. However due to delays in the Almaz all work on further development of the 7K-TK was suspended on 28 December 1966. In 1967 it was foreseen that the Almaz/Soyuz 7K-TK system would be tested in 1968 and enter service in 1969.

Following numerous problems in the first flight tests of the Soyuz 7K-OK, Kozlov ordered a complete redesign of the 7K-VI. The new spacecraft, with a crew of two, would have a total mass of 6.6 tonnes and could operate for a month in orbit. The project as reformulated was approved by the central committee on 21 July 1967 by the Central Committee of the Communist Party, with first flight to be in 1968 and operations to begin in 1969. The Soyuz VI was to include a recoilless gun for self-defence developed by the well known Soviet designer A E Nudelman. The final layout of the 7K-VI was very similar to that of the American MOL. Like the MOL, it featured the return capsule at the front, with a hatch in the heat shield leading to the orbital compartment, followed by the equipment-engine module. By the middle of 1967 the mock-up and dynamic stand for testing of the Nudelman gun were completed. All materials for the approval of the draft project by the expert commission were completed, and drawings were released for both the Zvezda and the Soyuz-M launch vehicle. But the head of OKB-1, Mishin, resented Kozlov's independence. Mishin proposed his own project for an orbital station 11F730 Soyuz VI. Through various complex machinations Mishin seized control of the project on 8 December 1967. OKB-1 would pursue it at a desultory pace until it was finally cancelled in 1969.

Chelomei meanwhile continued to eradicate any OKB-1 content from the Almaz. His draft project of 21 June 1967 showed the 11F71 Almaz station to consist of an 11F75 orbital block and an 11F74 VA landing apparatus (derived from the Apollo-type capsule he had designed for his LK-1 circumlunar spacecraft). The revised Almaz design would eliminate the need for the Soyuz 7K-TK. The Almaz also incorporated the Nudelman gun, the basic layout, and other equipment from Kozlov's cancelled Soyuz VI. By 1969, although the Almaz still had not flown, Chelomei went a step further and proposed replacement of the 11F72 Soyuz 7K-TK with his own transport-supply spacecraft 11F72 (transportniy korabl snabzheniya - TKS). This would consist of the 11F74 VA landing capsule and a new 11F77 Functional-Cargo Block (funktsionalno-gruzovoy blok, FGB). On 16 June 1970 Kozlov's Soyuz-R was finally cancelled and replaced by the TKS as the re-supply craft for Almaz under Central Party decree 437-160.

In its final form the 20-tonne Almaz was to operate for two to three years at a time and take reconnaissance photographs during that entire period. Three-man crews would be rotated every 90 days by TKS transport-supply spacecraft. The TKS VA reusable crew capsules could be launched and reused up to ten times. Chelomei however continued to have difficulty maintaining top-level support for Almaz as the project met delay after delay. While Khrushchev was in power, Chelomei was ascendant - Sergei Nikitovich, the Secretary General's son, worked at his firm. But Chelomei was not an experienced politician and belittled Council of Ministers Deputy Chairman Dmitri Ustinov. When Brezhnev took power, Ustinov became the Communist Party Central Committee Secretary for Defence. Chelomei's influence waned, and the project was badly behind schedule by the time the competing American MOL was cancelled in July 1969.

Having lost the moon race, but seeing a chance to beat the Americans in the space station race, Brezhnev ordered Mishin's OKB-1 to produce a space station in the shortest possible time using the Almaz structural vessel but grafting into it proven Soyuz systems. Eight completed Almaz spaceframes were handed over to Mishin, and installation of Soyuz systems was made at Chelomei's Khrunichev factory.

Following the death of the crew of Mishin's Salyut 1 on their return to earth in 1971, and the failure to reach orbit of the second Salyut in 1972, Brezhnev finally gave Chelomei the nod to launch the Almaz in order to beat the American Skylab. Under the cover name Salyut 2 it reached orbit in April 1973. A crew was preparing to launch but the station depressurised on the 13th day of the mission. Either a fragment of the exploded Proton booster's third stage penetrated the skin or an on-board electrical short started a fire. Almaz was finally successfully launched into space as Salyut 3 in June 1974. The one meter diameter telescope could photograph airfields and missile complexes. An optical sight gave the cosmonaut the illusion of coming to a standstill over a facility. The cosmonaut could see the numbers on the decks of ships and the types of aircraft on aircraft carriers. There were also infrared and topographical cameras. The Nudelman cannon inherited from the Soyuz VI was retained as an active defence system in the event of an attack by an Apollo spacecraft. The cannon was supplemented with space-to-space missiles.

Thirty military personnel were trained to work on Almaz. Aside from pilots there were seamen, missilemen, and communications specialists. Each would conduct intelligence operations in his area of expertise - for example Submariner Valeri Rozhdestvenskiy was to develop methods for conducting surveillance of enemy navies and submarines.

Due to development delays, the first two Almaz that reached orbit did not use the planned VA crew capsule. The TKS VA capsule was tested on several Proton launches, the first just after the final crew returned from Salyut 5. Instead Korolev OKB Soyuz ferries were used to transport the crews to the stations. But the Soviet military, based on the results of the Salyut 3 and 5 Almaz flights, lost interest in manned military space stations. Chelomei was told to scrap his unflown Almaz stations but instead hid them in a corner of his vast factory. The TKS was finally flown several times in conjunction with civilian Salyut stations., but never with its intended manned crew.

Military experiments planned for Almaz were moved to Salyut and Mir. The TKS design was adapted for use as Mir modules. Most notably the Spektr module was originally designed to test reconnaissance and anti-satellite systems.

Almaz continued in one form. As a counterpoint to the American Lacrosse satellite, a version of Almaz with an enormous side-looking radar was designed. The first such Almaz-K was to be launched in 1981. However, an order arrived from Moscow ten days prior to the launch - terminate the Almaz Program as a result of work on Buran. Ustinov had decided to deal the finishing blow to Chelomei. Only after the deaths of Chelomei and Ustinov (they died the same year two weeks apart) did new Chief Designer Gerbert Yefremov manage to convince Minister of Defence Sokolov that the program needed to be continued. They authorised him to prepare for launch the station that had collected dust for six years at the Baikonur test range. To the designers' surprise, the Almaz was in decent condition (in contrast to its fairing, which had been used as a toilet). It had only been saved by its external placards - ‘Warning - Don't Enter - Self-Destruct Charges on Board'. This much-suffering Almaz was launched on November 29, 1986. But the second stage did not separate for the first time in many years and the same self-destruct charges destroyed the Almaz.

The next Almaz-K was erected on the launch pad on June 25, 1987. The Proton launch vehicle normally cannot be kept fuelled, on hold, for more than four days. An order once again arrived at Baikonur - delay the launch and remove the rocket from the launch pad. The order was ignored, with extraordinary measures being taken to keep the station inside the shroud at normal temperatures despite hot summer days of 42 degrees C. Learning that Minister of General Machine Building Baklanov was at Baikonur, and he finally agreed to allow launch of the spacecraft. It received the name Cosmos 1870 and provided radar imagery to scientific and commercial customers for two years. A second Almaz-K was flown in 1991 as Almaz-1. This spacecraft was instrumental in the rescue of the expedition lost on the ice of Antarctica in the ship Mikhail Somov. No other sensor could locate the ship in the perpetual polar night.

In 1992, the Machine Building NPO began to develop a new Almaz-T, with three radars and an optical telescope. But financing was not forthcoming. The Almaz and TKS designs, however, live on into the 21st century - the Almaz as the International Space station base block, and the TKS as the International Space Station Zarya Functional Cargo Block.

More... - Chronology...


Associated People
  • Demin Demin, Lev Stepanovich (1926-1998) Russian engineer cosmonaut. Flew on Soyuz 15. More...
  • Artyukhin Artyukhin, Yuri Petrovich (1930-1998) Russian engineer cosmonaut. Flew on Soyuz 14. Member of first military space station mission. More...
  • Popovich Popovich, Pavel Romanovich (1930-2009) Ukrainian pilot cosmonaut. Flew on Vostok 4, Soyuz 14. Commander of first military space station mission. More...
  • Gorbatko Gorbatko, Viktor Vassilyevich (1934-) Russian pilot cosmonaut. Flew on Soyuz 7, Soyuz 24, Salyut 6 EP-7. More...
  • Volynov Volynov, Boris Valentinovich (1934-) Jewish-Russian pilot cosmonaut. Flew on Soyuz 5, Soyuz 21. More...
  • Lisun Lisun, Mikhail Ivanovich (1935-) Ukrainian engineer cosmonaut, 1965-1989. More...
  • Zholobov Zholobov, Vitali Mikhailovich (1937-) Ukrainian engineer cosmonaut. Flew on Soyuz 21. More...
  • Preobrazhensky Preobrazhensky, Vladimir Yevgenyevich (1939-1993) Russian engineer cosmonaut, 1965-1980. Graduated from Moscow Aviation Institute Soviet Air Force, liaising with aircraft industrial enterprises. Cosmonaut training November 1965 - December 1967. Worked at Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center. Killed in an auto crash. More...
  • Rozhdestvensky Rozhdestvensky, Valeri Illyich (1939-) Russian engineer cosmonaut. Flew on Soyuz 23. More...
  • Glazkov Glazkov, Yuri Nikolayevich (1939-2008) Russian engineer cosmonaut. Flew on Soyuz 24. More...
  • Sarafanov Sarafanov, Gennadi Vassilyevich (1942-2005) Russian pilot cosmonaut. Flew on Soyuz 15. More...
  • Zudov Zudov, Vyacheslav Dmitriyevich (1942-) Russian pilot cosmonaut. Flew on Soyuz 23. More...
  • Kozelsky Kozelsky, Vladimir Sergeyevich (1942-) Russian pilot cosmonaut, 1967-1983. Graduated from Kachinsk, 1963; Monino, 1981. Cosmonaut training 1967.05-1969.08.18. Later Deputy Mir Flight Director. Retired in 1992. More...
  • Berezovoi Berezovoi, Anatoli Nikolayevich (1942-) Russian pilot cosmonaut. Flew on Salyut 7 EO-1. More...

Associated Countries
Associated Spacecraft
  • Almaz OPS Russian manned space station. 3 launches, 1973.04.03 (Salyut 2) to 1976.06.22 (Salyut 5). Vladimir Chelomei's Almaz OPS was the only manned military space station ever actually flown. More...
  • Soyuz 7K-T/A9 Russian manned spacecraft. 8 launches, 1974.05.27 (Cosmos 656) to 1978.06.27 (Soyuz 30). Version of 7K-T for flights to Almaz. Known difference with the basic 7K-T included systems for remote control of the Almaz station and a revised parachute system. More...
  • TKS VA Russian manned spacecraft module. 13 launches, 1976.12.15 (Cosmos 881) to 1985.09.27 (Cosmos 1686). The VA reentry capsule was similar in configuration to the American Apollo, but 30% smaller. Reusable re-entry capsule. More...
  • TKS Russian manned spacecraft. 4 launches, 1977.07.17 (Cosmos 929) to 1985.09.27 (Cosmos 1686). More...
  • Almaz-T Russian civilian surveillance radar satellite. 3 launches, 1986.11.29 (Almaz-T s/n 303 Failure) to 1991.03.31 (Almaz 1). The results of the manned Almaz flights showed that manned reconnaissance from space was not worth the expense. More...

See also
Associated Flights
  • Soyuz VI Flight 1 Crew: Kolesnikov, Popovich. The planned first flight of the Soyuz VI combat spacecraft was planned for early 1969, beating America's equivalent Manned Orbiting Lab. The project was cancelled in 1968 in favour of Mishin's OIS (in turn cancelled in 1970) and Chelomei's Almaz stations. Backup crew: Belousov, Gubarev. More...
  • Soyuz (Almaz) 12 Crew: Artyukhin, Popovich. Planned first crew to the first Almaz space station. Cancelled after the loss of control of Almaz OPS 1 (Salyut 2) in orbit. Backup crew: Volynov, Zholobov. More...
  • Soyuz (Almaz) 13 Crew: Demin, Sarafanov. Planned second crew to the first Almaz space station. Cancelled after the loss of control of Almaz OPS 1 (Salyut 2) in orbit. Backup crew: Rozhdestvensky, Zudov. More...
  • Soyuz 14 Crew: Artyukhin, Popovich. First military space station mission. Manned military reconnaissance of the earth's surface, assessing the fundamental value of such observations, and some supplemental medico-biological research. Backup crew: Demin, Sarafanov.Support crew: Rozhdestvensky, Volynov, Zholobov, Zudov. More...
  • Soyuz 15 Crew: Demin, Sarafanov. Second phase of manned operations aboard the Salyut 3 military space station, aborted when the Igla rendezvous system electronics failed and no docking was made. Backup crew: Volynov, Zholobov.Support crew: Rozhdestvensky, Zudov. More...
  • Soyuz 16A Crew: Volynov, Zholobov. Planned but cancelled third mission to the Salyut 3 space station. Backup crew: Rozhdestvensky, Zudov. More...
  • Soyuz 21 Crew: Volynov, Zholobov. Military space station mission. Hand-docked with the Salyut 5 station after failure of automated Igla system. Crew member became psychotic and mission was returned to earth from space station early. Toxic gases in station were suspected. Backup crew: Rozhdestvensky, Zudov.Support crew: Berezovoi, Glazkov, Gorbatko, Lisun. More...
  • Soyuz 23 Crew: Rozhdestvensky, Zudov. Docking with Salyut 5 military station aborted due to electronics failure. Crew nearly froze to death after an emergency landing in a lake in a blizzard at -20 deg C. It took hours before the capsule could be dragged to shore. Backup crew: Glazkov, Gorbatko.Support crew: Berezovoi, Lisun. More...
  • Soyuz 24 Crew: Glazkov, Gorbatko. First complete change of cabin atmosphere for a space station. Special apparatus brought up to Salyut 5 to vent the entire station through the EVA airlock. However analysis after arrival showed no toxins in the air. Backup crew: Berezovoi, Lisun.Support crew: Kozelsky, Preobrazhensky. More...
  • Soyuz 25A Crew: Berezovoi, Lisun. Mission to the Salyut 5 space station, cancelled when fuel reserves aboard the station were 70 kg below those required for the planned 14 day mission. Backup crew: Kozelsky, Preobrazhensky. More...
  • Cosmos 997 Planned manned single-orbit flight aboard the TKS space capsule during a series of two-TKS-launched-by-one-Proton flight tests. Flown unmanned due to inability to demonstrate two consecutive failure-free launches. More...
  • TKS VA s/n 008 Planned manned single-orbit flight aboard the TKS space capsule during a series of two-TKS-launched-by-one-Proton flight tests. Flown unmanned due to inability to demonstrate two consecutive failure-free launches. More...
  • Cosmos 1100 Planned manned single-orbit flight aboard the TKS space capsule during a series of two-TKS-launched-by-one-Proton flight tests. Flown unmanned due to inability to demonstrate two consecutive failure-free launches. More...
  • TKS-1 Crew: Berezovoi, Glazkov, Makrushin. Planned first test manned flight of the TKS large ferry craft. Would have docked with the Almaz OPS 4 military space station. Flight cancelled with the rest of the Almaz program in 1981. Flown later unmanned to Salyut 6 as Cosmos 1267. Backup crew: Kozelsky, Artyukhin, Romanov. More...
  • TKS-2 Crew: Kozelsky, Artyukhin, Romanov. Second TKS flight that would have docked with the cancelled Almaz OPS 4 military space station. The spacecraft was instead flown unmanned to Salyut 7 as Cosmos 1443. Backup crew: Sarafanov, Preobrazhensky, Yuyukov. More...
  • TKS-3 Crew: Sarafanov, Preobrazhensky, Yuyukov. Third TKS flight that would have docked with the cancelled Almaz OPS 4 military space station. The spacecraft was instead flown unmanned to Salyut 7 as Cosmos 1686. Backup crew: Vasyutin, Rozhdestvensky, Grechanik. More...
  • Soyuz Almaz 4 Crew: Malyshev, Laveykin. Planned Soyuz flight to a dock with the Almaz OPS 4 space station. The mission was cancelled together with the Almaz program in 1981. More...
  • Salyut 7 EO-4-1a Crew: Savinykh. First manned operations in a second space station module. The three-man EO-4 TKS-3 crew conducted military experiments with the Cosmos-1686 module. Mission was cut short due to an incapacitating psychological condition developed by Vasyutin. Backup crew: Aleksandrov, Popov. More...
  • Salyut 7 EO-4-2 Crew: Vasyutin, Volkov Aleksandr. First manned operations in a second space station module. The three-man EO-4 TKS-3 crew conducted military experiments with the Cosmos-1686 module. Mission was cut short due to an incapacitating psychological condition developed by Vasyutin. Backup crew: Saley, Strekalov, Viktorenko. More...
  • Soyuz-Almaz-T-1 Planned launch to tend Almaz-T-1 station. Cancelled after the station's booster exploded on the way to orbit on 29 November 1986. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • Soyuz 11A511 Russian orbital launch vehicle. Standardized launch vehicle designed to replace a proliferation of earlier models (8K72, 8A91, 8K74, 8K78, 11A57). Designed initially to support launch of the Soyuz complex (7K manned, 9K rocket stage, and 11k tanker) and Zenit-4 reconnaisance satellite. Later 'U' model extended to cover a range of follow-on satellites. Compared to 11A57, the telemetry system was reduced in mass to no more than 150 kg, and engines were cherry-picked for the vehicle core to ensure that specific impulse was no less than 252 seconds at sea level, 315 in vacuum. More...
  • Proton-K Russian orbital launch vehicle. Development of a three-stage version of the UR-500 was authorised in the decree of 3 August 1964. Decrees of 12 October and 11 November 1964 authorised development of the Almaz manned military space station and the manned circumlunar spacecraft LK-1 as payloads for the UR-500K. Remarkably, due to continuing failures, the 8K82K did not satisfactorily complete its state trials until its 61st launch (Salyut 6 / serial number 29501 / 29 September 1977). Thereafter it reached a level of launch reliability comparable to that of other world launch vehicles. More...
  • Soyuz 11A511U Russian standardised man-rated orbital launch vehicle derived from the original R-7 ICBM of 1957. It has been launched in greater numbers than any orbital launch vehicle in history. Not coincidentally, it has been the most reliable as well. After over 40 years service in Russia, ESA built a new launch pad at Kourou which will keep it in service from three launch sites in three countries well into the mid-21st Century. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • RVSN Russian agency overseeing development of spacecraft. Raketniye Voiska Stratigcheskovo Naznacheniya (Russian Strategic Rocket Forces), Russia. More...
  • MOM Russian agency overseeing development of spacecraft. Ministry of General Machine Building (Moskva, Russia), Moscow, Russia. More...
  • UNKS Russian agency. Directorate of the Commander of Space Assets, Russia. More...

Associated Launch Sites
  • Baikonur Russia's largest cosmodrome, the only one used for manned launches and with facilities for the larger Proton, N1, and Energia launch vehicles. The spaceport ended up on foreign soil after the break-up of Soviet Union. The official designations NIIP-5 and GIK-5 are used in official Soviet histories. It was also universally referred to as Tyuratam by both Soviet military staff and engineers, and the US intelligence agencies. Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union the Russian Federation has insisted on continued use of the old Soviet 'public' name of Baikonur. In its Kazakh (Kazak) version this is rendered Baykonur. More...

Almaz Chronology


1964 Duing the year - . LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz.
  • Development of Soyuz-R and Soyuz-P begun. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Kozlov. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: Soyuz R; Soyuz P; Soyuz PPK; Soyuz 7K-TK. KB Kozlov began active development of the military applied versions of the Soyuz. A new version of the R-7 launch vehicle, the 11A514, was put into development to support launch of the Soyuz-P, now designated the 7K-PPK (pilotiruemovo korablya-perekhvatchika, manned interceptor spacecraft). The Soyuz-R would include the small orbital station 11F71 with photo-reconnaissance and ELINT equipment. To dock with the 11F71 station Kuibishev developed the transport spacecraft 11F72 7K-TK. This version of the Soyuz was equipped with rendezvous, docking, and transition equipment, including an airlock, that allowed the two cosmonauts to enter the station without using EVA. The launch vehicle for the 7K-TK would be the 11A511, known today as the Soyuz.

1965 March 1 - .
  • Soyuz 7K-PPK cancelled. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Chelomei. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: Soyuz PPK. Summary: Based on successful test flights of Chelomei's unmanned interceptor-sputnik prototypes (Polyot 1 and 2), the Soyuz 7K-PPK manned interceptor version is cancelled..

1966 September 2 - .
1966 September 7 - .
  • Cosmonaut group leaders - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Volkov; Grechko; Kubasov; Popovich; Belyayev; Severin; Khrunov; Gorbatko; Anokhin; Yeliseyev; Pravetskiy. Program: Soyuz; Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 1; Soyuz 2A. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-L1; Soyuz VI; Almaz OPS; Yastreb. Volkov, Grechko and Kubasov believe they can complete cosmonaut training in two months. Of course they know space technology, but Kamanin informs them that, with intensive training, they might be ready in one or two years. Popovich is assigned as leader of the Soyuz VI military spacecraft training group, and Belyayev as head of the Almaz military orbital station training group. Kaminin tells Severin to complete spaceuits for Khrunov and Gorbatko, but to ignore Mishin's orders to prepare suits for Anokhin and Yeliseyev. Anokhin has already been rejected due to his age and health, and Yeliseyev is still being tested. Kamanin reviews draft test programs for the UR-500K/L1 and N1-L3. He lines out statements inserted by Pravetskiy on joint training of cosmonauts by the MOM, Ministry of Public Health and VVS.

1966 October 13 - .
  • Almaz status review. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Tereshkova; Kuznetsov; Chelomei. Program: Almaz. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. Tereshkova departs for a tour of Belgium. General Kuznetsov accompanies a group of cosmonauts to visit Chelomei's design bureau to review progress on the Almaz military space station. Each station will remain in orbit for two years, with the crews being changed out every two months. Kamanin believes the ability of a crew to operate in zero-G for two months is not proven; he will assume the crew will have to be changed every two weeks. This would mean that per year of operation, 25 crews and 25 boosters for their delivery to the station would be required. If each crew could fly 2-3 times, per year, then even in this worse case scenario, 10 crews would be enough to keep the station manned.

1966 December 28 - . LV Family: UR-700. Launch Vehicle: UR-700.
  • Almaz and LK-700 development status - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Chelomei; Smirnov; Ustinov. Program: Almaz; Lunar L1; Lunar L3. Spacecraft: LK-1; LK-700; Raketoplan; Almaz OPS. Kamanin accompanies 17 generals and other officers of the VVS in a tour of Chelomei's OKB-52. Chelomei spends five hours personally acquainting the visitors with his bureau's space technology capabilities. It was the first in-depth meeting Kamanin and Vershinin have had with Chelomei, despite meeting with him occasionally since 1961. They have mainly interacted with Korolev and now Mishin. Additional Details: here....

1966 December 28 - .
  • Soyuz-VI to fly by end of 1967. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Kozlov. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: Soyuz VI. Summary: Resolution 'On approval of work on the 7K-VI Zvezda and course of work on Almaz' no. 305 ordered Kozlov's filial 3 of OKB-1 to undertake first flight of the manned military research spacecraft 7K-VI - 11F73 Zvezda by the end of 1967..

1967 January 5 - .
  • Cosmonaut training status - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Brezhnev; Titov. Program: Lunar L1; Soyuz; Almaz. Spacecraft: Voskhod; Soyuz 7K-OK; Soyuz 7K-L1; Almaz OPS; Soyuz VI. Crews are in training for Voskhod, Soyuz, Lunar L-1, Almaz, and 7K-VI missions. There will be 100 cosmonauts in training by February. Meanwhile the Americans have conducted 10 manned flights since the last Soviet manned flight in March 1965. The cosmonauts want Kamanin to be training 8 crews for L-1 translunar flights, but he only has 4 in training. He doesn't think it is worth to train more, since if one successful L-1 flight is conducted before the 50th Anniversary of the Soviet Union in November 1957, all subsequent flights will be cancelled. Additional Details: here....

1967 July 31 - .
  • Meeting of space programme management in the Crimea. - . Nation: USSR. Program: Almaz. Spacecraft: Soyuz OB-VI; Almaz OPS. Two planning documents are discussed. The first deals with the training of civilian cosmonauts. Two phases of training are planned, the first phase at MOM institutes and Minzorar, the second at TsPK and the VVS. In addition 50 new air force pilots will be identified for space duty in three groups in 1968, 1969, and 1970. They will be ready for the planned large number of 7K-VI and Almaz flights beginning in 1972. Brezhnev would like to see more Voskhod flights. Meanwhile Titov has qualified as a test pilot third class, and will qualify as second class by the end of the year. All in all, things are looking good in the years ahead.

1967 September 11 - .
  • Kamanin reviews military space plans for the period 1968-1975. - . Nation: USSR. Program: Almaz. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS; Soyuz VI; Soyuz 7KT-OK; Spiral OS. Summary: The first military combat space units are to be formed - for operations with the 7K-VI and Almaz spacecraft, together with subsidiary Soyuz transport and training flights..

1967 September 13 - .
  • Kamanin continues work on the 8-year plan for military space. - . Nation: USSR. Program: Almaz. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS; Soyuz VI; Soyuz 7KT-OK; Spiral OS. The general staff's space plans are impressive - in 1968-1975 they foresee no less than 20 Almaz space stations, 50 military 7K-VI missions, 200 Soyuz training spacecraft flights and 400 Soyuz space transport flights. This is based on the assumption that the crew of the military space stations will have to be rotated every 15 days. That will require 48 transport spacecraft per year, implying not less than 30 ready crews with 3 cosmonauts in each crew (this in turn implies each each cosmonaut will fly a space mission 1.5 times per year). Since supplies will have to be delivered to the stations, that will require another 200 additional transport spacecraft launches. And all of this is aside from civilian Soyuz flights, L1, L3, and various other civilian spacecraft - implying a total of 1000 launches in the period. This will require 800 Soyuz-class launch vehicles, 100 Protons, and 10 to 12 N1 boosters. The inevitable conclusion for Kamanin is that most of the transport launches should be made by a reusable winged spacecraft, air-launched from an An-22 heavy transport. This is the goal of the Spiral project. By 1975 Kamanin sees a requirement for 400 active cosmonauts, organised in two to three aerospace brigades, supported by10 aviation regiments, and including the TsPK training centre -- altogether 20,000 to 25,000 men. 250 million roubles will be needed to build new aerodromes and facilities alone, all chargeable to the VVS. Total cost will run into tens of billions of roubles per year.

1967 November 30 - .
  • Almaz program review. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Pashkov; Afanasyev, Sergei; Chelomei; Gagarin; Mishin. Program: Almaz. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. Kamanin attends an Almaz program review with Pashkov, Afanasyev, and Chelomei. The resolution of June 1967 required space trials to begin in 1968, and entry of the system into military service in 1969. But this schedule was flawed from the beginning. The project plan required design, qualification, and delivery of completely new complex systems from ten different ministries. The Ministry of Radio Equipment was to deliver 66 items, but the ministry refused, saying they could handle two at most. Similar responses were received from other ministries. The result is that six months into the program, the first flight schedule has already slid 24 months, to 1970. The VVS has been dealing with Chelomei for two years, and find him much better to work with than Mishin. Chelomei's deputies are highly cultured men, pleasant to work with (unlike Mishin and his circle). The VVS is to handle the following on the Almaz program:
    • Development of crew safety items, cockpit indicators on the function of the landing system, and controls for manual landing by the astronaut
    • Development of the HAZ complex for training of crew members
    • Review and approval of station systems for water generation, medical observation of the crew, and atmosphere indicators and controls
    • Development of a manned manoeuvring unit to allow the cosmonauts to manoeuvre up to 300 m from the station
    Gagarin is at the Chkalov Airfield, in preparation for his solo flight in a MiG-17. This will be his first solo aircraft flight in seven years. Kuznetsov tried to keep this day from coming.

1967 December 8 - .
  • TsKBEM confirms Mishin's decision to cancel Soyuz VI - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Bushuyev; Okhapkin; Feoktistov; Karas; Shcheulov; Gaidukov; Chelomei; Kerimov. Program: Almaz. Spacecraft: Soyuz VI; LK-1; Almaz OPS; Soyuz 7K-S; Soyuz OB-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. Additional Details: here....

1968 January 27 - .
  • Cosmonauts take case against Mishin to VVS high command. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Gagarin; Titov; Popovich; Belyayev; Leonov; Chelomei; Mishin; Ustinov; Afanasyev, Sergei. Program: Lunar L1; Almaz. Spacecraft: Soyuz VI; Almaz OPS. Kamanin, Gagarin, Titov, Popovich, Belyayev, and Leonov meet with Marshal Yakabovskiy. They inform him that Mishin is blocking further development of the 7K-VI military manned spacecraft and also trying to kill Chelomei's Almaz military space station. They get nowhere. The Marshal says that while he doesn't understand much about space himself, Ustinov had assured him that Mishin and Afanasyev were taking all measures necessary to correct the necessary material...

1968 February 8 - .
  • VVS officers inspect TsPK. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Nikolayev; Popovich. Program: Lunar L1; Lunar L3; Almaz. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. It is currently organised in three cosmonaut detachments: Nikolayev commands the first detachment, which is training for L3, L1, and Soyuz fiights. Popovich commands the second, training for Almaz and 7K-VI military space missions. Nikeryasov commands the third, which is the 'observer' detachment.

1968 March 7 - .
  • Soyuz parachute recertification holding up all manned programs. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Tkachev. Program: Soyuz; Lunar L1; Lunar L3; Almaz. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-L1; Soyuz 7K-LOK; Soyuz 7K-OK; Almaz OPS. Mishin certified to MAP on 5 March that the Soyuz parachute system development is complete, but Tkachayev has dissented, saying that the system was unreliable and overweight (this from the same chief designer that certified the previous design as having an 0.999 reliability!). The parachute trials will not be finished until May - meaning there will be no manned Soyuz launch in April. This problem is holding up the L1, L3, and Almaz projects as well.

1968 December 26 - .
  • Heated arguments over technical approach of Soviet space systems - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Shatalov; Beregovoi; Severin; Mnatsakanian; Mishin. Program: Lunar L1; Soyuz; Almaz. Flight: Apollo 8. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-OK; Soyuz 7K-L1; Soyuz 7K-LOK; Soyuz 7K-S; Almaz OPS; Soyuz OB-VI; Soyuz VI. The training for the Soyuz 4 and 5 flights was completed last night. Today the crews undergo medical tests and start preparation of their flight logs/flight plans. On the return flight to Moscow Shatalov, Beregovoi, Severin, Kamanin, and Mnatsakanian get into a heated argument. The cosmonauts attack Mnatsakanian's Igla automated docking system. It limits docking manoeuvres to periods when the spacecraft are flying over the Soviet Union due to the requirement for ground stations to receive live television. The Americans worked only on the Apollo spacecraft for the last two to three years, while the Soviets have divided their efforts on no less than five spacecraft types: the L1, L3, Soyuz, Soyuz VI, and Almaz. This is all Mishin's fault...

1969 Early - .
1969 March 20 - . LV Family: N1. Launch Vehicle: N1.
  • Soviet of military officers meets to review manned space plans. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Beregovoi. Program: Lunar L3; Lunar L1; Soyuz; Almaz. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-OK; Soyuz 7K-L1; Soyuz 7K-LOK; LK; Soyuz OB-VI; Almaz OPS; Spiral OS. A 50 minute presentation is given on space plans. Russia plans to fly no less than six different types of manned spacecraft in 1969-1970 - the Soyuz, L1, L3, Almaz, Soyuz VI, and Spiral. This will result in a decisive answer to the American Apollo programme within two to three years. No N1 launch with the complete L3 lunar landing spacecraft is planned until 1970. Approval is sought for the VVS to buy 10 Soyuz spacecraft for continued manned military flights in low earth orbit. Otherwise between the second half of 1970 and during all of 1971 there will be no spacecraft available for manned flights Additional Details: here....

1969 May 10 - .
  • Military space research plans - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Kutakhov. Program: Lunar L3; Lunar L1; Soyuz; Almaz. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-OK; Soyuz 7K-L1; Soyuz 7K-LOK; LK; Soyuz OB-VI; Almaz OPS; Spiral OS. Kamanin makes a speech to the VVS Soviet, setting forth again plans for military research in space. His presentation shows how far the USSR is behind the Americans, and the need to regain the lead. He again proposes 10 to 12 military Soyuz flights beginning in the first quarter 1970. This will fill the gap until Soyuz VI and Almaz will begin flying in 1972. Kutakhov is categorically against these Soyuz flights but, under pressure from others, still agrees to form a commission to study the matter. Reference is made to a Ministry of Defence decree of 7 January 1969.

1969 June 21 - .
  • Design issued for OIS military space station. - . Nation: USSR. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-S; Soyuz OB-VI. Summary: Draft project OIS 11F730, was issued by TsKBEM and filial 3 jointly. In the course of 1969 complete drawings were released for the OIS project including modules for the spacecraft 7K-S, 7K-S-I, and 7K-S-II..

1969 August 1 - . LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K/D.
  • The DOS Conspiracy begins - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Chelomei. Program: Lunar L3; Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: LK; Soyuz 7K-LOK; Almaz OPS; MKBS. With the collapse of the work on the N1, the whole reason for Mishin's design bureau's existence simply vanished in the air. A new high-priority project was needed. Korolev had begun development of a Multi-Module Space Base (MKBS) before 1966. However MKBS was to be launched by the N1; as long as this was not available, there would be no MKBS. Almaz on the other hand did not require a new launch vehicle, although the UR-500 was in a period of intense 'baby sickness'. So while TsKBEM was in a period of analysis and instability, Chelomei's Reutov and Fili facilities were building space stations for the Ministry of Defence.

    On one of these August 1969 days, three of Chelomei's TsKBM engineers came to the office of Mishin's deputy, Chertok, with a plan to get a space station orbited before the American Skylab. They wanted a collaboration between the two competing design bureaux. Their plan was to take an Almaz spaceframe, install Soyuz systems, add a new docking tunnel with a hatch to reach the interior, and presto - a space station was finished. Tentative discussions with potential allies within Chelomei's design bureau found support there as well. The DOS 'long-duration orbiting station' was the result of this 'conspiracy'.


1969 October 5 - .
  • DOS Conspiracy briefed to Ustinov - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Afanasyev, Sergei; Tyulin; Feoktistov; Ustinov. Program: Lunar L3; Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: LK; Soyuz 7K-LOK. Mishin was opposed to the DOS space station concept - he wanted to pursue the N1-launched MKBS. Afanasyev and Deputy Minister Tyulin wouldn't support the idea either. None of them wanted to take the risk. The only chance was to get to VPK Chairman Ustinov through Communist party channels. The opportunity came on the flight of engineers and management to Baikonur for the Soyuz 6/7/8 flight. Feoktistov had prepared a briefing on DOS, which he presented to Ustinov.

1969 October 19 - .
  • DOS Conspiracy briefed to wide circle of space planners - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Ustinov; Feoktistov; Keldysh; Afanasyev, Sergei; Tyulin; Serbin; Bushuyev; Semenov; Chelomei. Program: Lunar L3; Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: LK; Soyuz 7K-LOK; Almaz OPS; Salyut 1. In the euphoria after the return of the Soyuz 6/7/8 crews, the problem was how to get Ustinov to meet further with the DOS 'conspirators'. Mishin had prohibited any meetings by TsKBEM staff with the Communist Party Secretary unless Mishin was also present. Another obstacle was that Feoktistov was not a party member; how could his presence at a party meeting be explained to Mishin later?

    In any event these consideations were simply ignored. Feoktistov was present at a party meeting with Keldysh, Afanasyev, Tyulin, Serbin, and the Ministry of Defence's party cell: Strogonov, Kravtsev, and Popov. Keldysh was mainly worried how the project would affect the N1, but was reassured that the N1 had a dedicated work force, and the L3 lunar lander spacecraft engineers and workers that would work on DOS were currently idle and had no part of that work. It was finally decided to go ahead with the DOS no earlier than January, to allow time for Ministry Decrees, approval of a work plan by the VPK, preparation of a decree for signature by the Central Committee of the Communist Party and the Soviet Ministers. Work began on the project in December 1969 under the initial auspices of the Academy of Sciences. Additional Details: here....


1969 December 1 - . LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton 8K82K.
  • First flight Almaz station close to completion - . Nation: USSR. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned space station. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. Summary: Ten stations 'in advanced stage of completion' by end of year..

1969 December 6 - .
  • The DOS Conspiracy in the open - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Afanasyev, Sergei; Pilyugin; Ryazanskiy; Kuznetsov, Viktor; Chelomei; Ustinov. Program: Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-S; Almaz OPS; Salyut 1; Soyuz 7KT-OK. Afanasyev met with the Chief Designers - Pilyugin, Ryazanskiy, V Kuznetsov, and Chelomei's Deputy, Eydis. Mishin was 'sick' and Chelomei had sent his deputy, as usual, to avoid having to meet Mishin. Afanasyev started with the demand that an Almaz flight take place within less than two years, before the end of the Eighth Five Year Plan. He asked Eydis to install an Igla passive docking system to permit docking with the station of the existing Soyuz 7K-OK as opposed to the planned 7K-S. If Chelomei's bureau could not meet this requirement, then the 'conspirator's' DOS project could be authorised in its place. Additional Details: here....

1969 December 26 - . LV Family: N1. Launch Vehicle: N1.
  • DOS formally authorised - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Ustinov; Chelomei; Glushko; Kuznetsov. Program: Lunar L3; Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS; Salyut 1. Ustinov called the DOS 'conspirators' to Kuibyshev Street. Mishin was sent away to Kslovodsk and Chelomei and Glushko were not invited. No one wanted to listen to any more of Glushko's diatribes about Kuznetsov's engines.

    Ustinov supported presentation of the DOS concept to the Central Committee. Chelomei categorically opposed DOS and was trying to kill it through military channels. But the allure of an '18 month' station - one which would not only beat the American Skylab, but be in space in time for the 24th Party Congress - seemed too alluring. Mishin also rejected DOS, but deputies at both design bureaux supported the concept and were eager to proceed.

    DOS was therefore created only when the moon project failed. Chelomei was forced to work on DOS, and it severely impacted Almaz schedules. The Salyut name was later applied to both the DOS and Almaz stations, creating the impression in the outside world that they were built by one designer.


1970 January 19 - .
  • Soviet leadership interest in manned spaceflight has collapsed. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Belyayev; Brezhnev; Mishin; Chelomei; Popovich; Bykovsky. Program: Salyut; Almaz; Skylab. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS; Salyut 1; Soyuz 7K-S. Kamanin notes that interest of the leadership in manned spaceflight has collapsed with the end of the moon race. Brezhnev has declared that his primary interest is in earth orbital space stations. Both Mishin and Chelomei have stations in development, but the work is progressing slowly. There will be no launch of either of their projects until 1972 - which means the Soviets will be beaten by the US Skylab. Kamanin believes the Americans can never be beaten in space unless all space projects are guided firmly by a single Ministry of Defence and Civilian Space office. Meanwhile the Hong Kong flu epidemic is hitting many at the cosmodrome - Moroz, Popovich, and Bykovsky are all seriously ill.

1970 February 1 - . LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton 8K82K.
  • Space station programs rationalised. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Chelomei; Mishin. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned space station. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS; Soyuz 7K-S; Soyuz OB-VI; Salyut 1. Brezhnev orders a cooperative crash program to build a civilian space station to beat Skylab into orbit. The civilian station (later named Salyut) will use the Almaz spaceframe fitted out with Soyuz functional equipment. Mishin's OIS military station was cancelled and Chelomei's Almaz would continue, but as second priority to the civilian station. The Soyuz 7K-S station ferry, the 7K-ST, would be revised to be a more conservative modification of the Soyuz 7K-OK. The OIS cosmonaut group was incorporated into the Almaz group.

1970 February 18 - .
  • Kamanin opposes DOS - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Belyayev; Mishin; Ustinov; Smirnov; Kozlov. Program: Soyuz; Salyut; Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 10; Soyuz 11. Spacecraft: Salyut 1; Soyuz 7KT-OK; Almaz OPS; Soyuz OB-VI; Soyuz VI. Kamanin recommends the death benefit to be awarded to Belyayev's family. There is to be a one-time payment of 2,000 roubles to his wife; 1,100 roubles to his daughter; 180 roubles/month pension to the wife; 75 roubles/month to the daughter; access to cosmonaut centre sanatoriums; and a seven-room apartment in Moscow.

    Kamanin also reviews the government decree on the DOS-7K space station program. The Ministry of Defence is against it - they want to continue with the Almaz and Soyuz VI projects already underway. DOS will bring both of these to a halt. This is a repeat of the situation in 1967. Kozlov was making good progress on the original Soyuz VI, when it was killed by Mishin. Now three years later Mishin's Soyuz VI is put on the back burner. The Soyuz 7K-OK is still the only manned program brought to completion. Kamanin blames all this on Ustinov and Smirnov's stupid political manoeuvring. The DOS decree has not one word on the training of cosmonauts for these space station missions...


1970 February 26 - .
  • Kamanin views DOS, continuation of N1-L3 with dismay - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin. Program: Soyuz; Salyut; Lunar L3; Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 10; Soyuz 11. Spacecraft: Salyut 1; Soyuz 7K-LOK; LK; Almaz OPS; Soyuz OB-VI; Soyuz VI. The Ministry of Defence and VVS approve the draft DOS resolution. Kamanin has fought against it. He would prefer to develop a single reliable Soyuz spacecraft model by building and flying ten more (there are only four left of the original production lot in assembly). Instead the space leadership keep dreaming up new projects. In Kamanin's view, the DOS and its new Soyuz ferry design join Almaz, Soyuz VI, and the L3 as 'paper spacecraft'. Mishin still thinks he will 'teach the N1 to fly' and complete the L3, but Kamanin thinks the chances of this are nil. There is no coherent plan for Soviet spaceflight.

1970 February 27 - .
  • DOS schedules, Soyuz Kontakt flights still in play - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Bogomolov. Program: Soyuz; Salyut; Lunar L3; Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 10; Soyuz 11; Soyuz n 17; Soyuz n 18; Soyuz n 19; Soyuz n 20. Spacecraft: Soyuz Kontakt; Almaz OPS; Soyuz OB-VI; Soyuz VI. A meeting is held on the DOS project. The Central Committee and Soviet Ministers have directed that two DOS space stations be completed by the end of 1970. TsNIIMASH thinks this is impossible - the task can be accomplished in no less than 18 to 24 months. Mishin insists it can be done in ten months, as directed. Kamanin believes he won't even have it ready by the second half of 1971. It took five to seven years to just bring the Almaz, Soyuz VI, and L1 to flight status. This DOS will stop work on all other projects. Mishin still wants to fly two Soyuz spacecraft to test Bogomolov's Kontakt docking system for the L3.

1970 February 28 - .
  • Failure to achieve space objectives in Five-Year Plan - . Nation: USSR. Program: Soyuz; Lunar L1; Lunar L3; Almaz. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS; Soyuz OB-VI; Soyuz VI. Kamanin is asked to assist in preparation of the next five-year plan for spaceflight (1971-1975). He muses that nothing that was to be accomplished in the last five-year plan was achieved, so what is he supposed to put in the new one? 1966-1971 was supposed to have seen Soviet manned flybys and landings on the moon; a cosmonaut contingent increased to 140 and cadres in training for military missions on the Soyuz VI and Almaz. None of this was achieved, and the cosmonaut corps actually only numbers 97.

1970 September 23 - .
  • Cosmonaut training plans. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Bogomolov; Popovich; Bykovsky. Program: Salyut; Almaz; Lunar L3. Spacecraft: Spiral OS; Soyuz Kontakt; Almaz OPS. The training plan for DOS#1 is reviewed. The station is to be launched by February 1971. Soyuz 10 and Soyuz 11 will dock with it and crew the station for two to three months, according to Mishin's plan. This however will slow down flight test of Bogomolov's Kontakt docking system for the L3. This was to have been ready by January 1970, but it is still not ready for flight. On the other hand, the completion of the DOS station within four to five months is not possible. There are currently 12 cosmonauts in training for DOS, and ten for Soyuz flights. Popovich heads a group of 22 cosmonauts training for Almaz; and Bykovsky heads a group on lunar issues. The new trainers and simulators are on schedule; the existing ones are being heavily used.

1970 October 6 - .
  • Cosmonaut training centre status. - . Nation: USSR. Program: Salyut; Almaz; Lunar L3. Spacecraft: Spiral OS; Almaz OPS. Kamanin reviews the work of the training centre in 1970-1971. There are 12 cosmonauts training for DOS missions; 22 for Almaz; 5 for Spiral; and a 'group' for the L3. They have flown 5000 flight hours in jet trainers. During the last two years Kamanin has increased the number of trainers and simulators available; achieved 100% of the training plan; and met the physical training requirements (all cosmonauts must accomplish a 10 km run).

1970 October 28 - .
  • Chelomei's 'war' with Korolev and Mishin - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Chelomei; Mishin; Serbin; Smirnov; Afanasyev, Sergei. Program: Almaz; Salyut; Lunar L1. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS; Salyut 1; LK-1; Soyuz 7K-L1. Kamanin meets with Chelomei. Chelomei discusses his 'war' with Korolev and Mishin. Korolev interfered with, and then finally took the manned lunar flyby project from Chelomei. Now Mishin is doing the same thing with Almaz. Chelomei had already invested five years in development of Almaz, and was on the way to producing a good space station. Then Mishin pushes him out of the way and seizes his production line to build the DOS-7K. DOS#1 is actually Almaz#5, nothing more than a bad copy of Chelomei's station. Serbin and Smirnov do not trust Mishin, which is why they have only authorised him to build four DOS stations. Serbin, Smirnov, and Afanasyev have visited Chelomei, and told him to accelerate work on the Almaz, using three shifts 24 hours a day.

    Kamanin notes the second hijacking in Turkey of a Soviet airliner in the last two weeks.


1970 November 17 - .
  • Indecision on DOS profile; Almaz station accelerated. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Volynov; Khrunov; Shatalov; Yeliseyev; Kutakhov; Mishin. Program: Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: Salyut 1; Almaz OPS. It is decided to send only Volynov and Khrunov to the FAI Congress in India. Shatalov and Yeliseyev are too busy with training on the DOS-7K simulator. Luna 17 has landed on the moon with the Lunokhod lunar rover, another success. DOS#1 is behind schedule for the planned 5 February 1971 launch. It still has not been decided, which will launch first - Soyuz 10 or the DOS station. Such indecision makes it very difficult to train the crews! The simulators for Soyuz, L3, DOS, and Almaz are all now in full use for crew training. Kamanin discusses with engineers construction of a pool for EVA training (25 m wide and 12 m deep). Kutakahov is opposed to the project. Chelomei has been ordered to accelerate the first Almaz launch to 1972, if he can resist the continuous attacks by Mishin. Mishin has become very accomplished, on the N1/L3 program, in spending huge amounts of money with no result.

1970 November 27 - .
  • VVS considers role in space. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Nikolayev; Tereshkova; Sevastyanov. Program: Almaz. Spacecraft: Spiral OS; Almaz OPS. The leaders of the VVS meet to consider the role of the Air Force in space and Kamanin's draft resolution. Frolov wants to form a VVS regiment for Almaz operations. Molzhavtsev wants to emphasize full use of unmanned satellites for support of the VVS (communications, navigation, reconnaissance). Later in the meeting V V Kuznestov discusses with Kamanin plans for a planned Nikolayev-Tereshkova-Sevastyanov trip to Egypt in January 1971. It has to be planned around opening ceremonies for the Aswan Dam.

1970 December 2 - .
  • Grechko blocking Spiral program. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Grechko, Andrei; Dementiev; Kutakhov. Program: Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: Spiral OS; Almaz OPS. Kutahkov is now Kamanin's direct superior; Efimov has been sent to a command in Cairo. Two An-22 heavy-lift transports have crashed in Pakistan and the Atlantic (en route to Chile). Kamanin meets with Dementiev and Kazatov at MAP. DOS-7K and Almaz simulator problems and the Spiral spaceplane project are discussed. There is not even a firm program plan for Spiral. Dementiev says this is because of the coolness of Grechko and Kutakhov to the subject. They block any discussion of the matter by the Central Committee. Grechko has written on Spiral - 'this is a fanatasy. We must spend money on more concrete items'.

1970 December 9 - .
  • Funds allocated to Cosmonaut Training Centre only a fraction of what is needed. - . Nation: USSR. Program: Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. Kamanin reviews 1970. It has been a good year. The Soviet Union set a duration record with the Soyuz 9 flight, Luna-16 and Lunokhod-1 conducted successful robot missions to the moon, dozens of Kosmos satellites were successfully launched. In the next year cosmonaut training will concentrate on DOS-7K, Almaz, and Soyuz 7KT. The five-year plan for the centre includes construction of 5000 square metres of new laboratories, improved simulators, completion of a water tank for EVA training, and installation of the IF-20 centrifuge. However all of this will cost 11 million roubles, and only 2 to 3 million are likely to be allocated...

1970 December 17 - .
  • Public information policy for DOS/Almaz discussed. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin. Program: Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. Summary: Plans for secrecy, public information policy, and arrangements for the upcoming DOS and Almaz space station flights are discussed..

1970 December 30 - .
  • Spacecraft simulator review. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Darevskiy. Program: Almaz; Salyut; Lunar L3. Spacecraft: Salyut 1; Almaz OPS; Soyuz 7K-LOK; LK. Trainer review with S G Darevskiy. It is estimated that the trainers only meet 25% to 30% of the total training needs of the cosmonauts. In the next year Kamanin wants Darevskiy to exert 75% of his effort on the Almaz simulator, 20% on the DOS-7K, and only 5% on the L3. Mishin wants zero effort on Almaz, 70% on DOS-7K, and 30% on the L3.

1971 January 9 - .
  • VVS Reviews TsKBM Facilities and Programs - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Chelomei; Ustinov; Mishin. Program: Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: Salyut 1; Almaz OPS. The VVS leadership visits Chelomei's facility at Reutov. Kamanin recalls first seeting the Almaz mock-up five years earlier - it was already fully defined then. But it was only in August 1970 that a resolution was issued setting a firm schedule: Chelomei was to start flight trails in the second half of 1971, and the station was to enter service in 1972. Mishin is proposing to cancel Almaz and build 10 DOS stations instead. Mishin currently supervises five design bureaux, 60,000 workers, and is working on Soyuz, 7K-S, L3, DOS-7K, and a very few other projects. Chelomei has only one design bureau and 8,000 workers. Yet he has produced well-designed, mass-produced cruise missiles for the Navy, over 1,000 ICBM's for the RVSN, and the high-quality UR-500 Proton launch vehicle. Almaz could have flown on time if Ustinov had allowed Chelomei just 10% of the resources he has let Mishin squander on DOS. Chelomei easily agrees with the VVS to a mutual schedule for Almaz crew training, crew composition, etc. The contrast with the argumentative Mishin couldn't be greater.

1971 January 14 - .
  • VVS should support Almaz and Spiral. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Kutakhov; Mishin; Dementiev; Afanasyev, Sergei; Kalmykov; Grechko, Andrei; Zverev. Program: Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: Salyut 1; Spiral OS. Kamanin discusses with Kutakhov the need for the VVS to back Chelomei rather than Mishin. As for the Spiral, the support of Dementiev, Afanasyev, Kalmykov, and Zverev have been lined up for the program. But Grechko is still blocking it. And Kutakhov is unwilling to challenge Grechko on the issue.

1971 January 20 - .
  • Mishin pushing 'Big Orbital Station'. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Chelomei; Kozlov. Program: Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS; MKBS. Mishin is attempting to set up a separate training centre for civilian cosmonauts at the Moscow Aviation Institute. Mishin and the civilian cosmonauts come to view the TsPK premises to get ideas. This is a new attack by Mishin, in Kamanin's eyes. Mishin has been ill for a long time, but it doesn't stop him from meddling in the details of work of his deputies. Now they are working on a Big Orbital Station (BOS) for 9-12 crew. This amounts to nothing more than a new move against Chelomei. Mishin is intent on monopolising manned spaceflight at any cost. He attempts to take over any other such projects allocated to Chelomei or Kozlov.

1971 February 27 - .
  • Mishin plans to get Almaz cancelled. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Kutakhov; Karas; Mishin; Chelomei. Program: Almaz; Salyut. Spacecraft: Salyut 1; Almaz OPS; Spiral OS. Kamanin has a meeting scheduled with Chelomei, but this is cancelled and he is called to another meeting with Mishin -- all to advance Mishin's agenda. Mishin complains that he doesn't know what the Almaz project is about. He claims Chelomei has spent half a billion roubles so far, and has nothing to show for it. Mishin, on the other hand, has two DOS stations ready to fly, done at a cost of only 80 million roubles. But Kamanin knows very well who has really wasted hundreds of millions of roubles - Mishin. Mishin produces his plans for DOS#3 and DOS#4 follow-on stations. These are to be copies of Almaz, delivered in 18 months. Mishin says he is building ten 7K-S for the spacecraft, despite the fact that Karas at GUKOS is not interested in manned spaceflight. Afterwards Kamanin tells Kutakhov to warn Chelomei that he must support the VVS' 7K-S and Spiral projects, if he wants VVS support for Almaz.

1971 March 6 - .
  • Space Plan for 1971 unrealistic. - . Nation: USSR. Program: Salyut; Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 10; Soyuz 11; Soyuz 12 / DOS 1. Spacecraft: Salyut 1; Almaz OPS; TKS; Spiral OS. The space plan for 1971 has finally been approved. There are to be three space stations launched, manned by ten Soyuz launches and a total of over 12 different crewmembers in space during the year. But it is clear to Kamanin that the second DOS and first Almaz station will not really be ready this year. And there won't be more than two Soyuz and two TKS transports available by the end of the year. Ranazomov says that Chelomei's TKS, being designed to fly to the Almaz, will cover many of he same requirements of the Spiral spaceplane. He proposes that Mikoyan should collaborate with Chelomei on Spiral. Meanwhile simulators at TsPK remain underfunded.

1971 April 15 - . LV Family: N1. Launch Vehicle: N1.
  • Salyut preparations - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Chelomei. Program: Lunar L3; Salyut; Almaz. Spacecraft: Salyut 1; Almaz OPS; MKBS. The Salyut station was prepared in a huge two story bunker built for launch vehicle / payload processing. The contrast between the money lavished by the military on this facility for Chelomei's projects and the limited funds available for a proper N1 preparation and test facilities was enormous. Here funds were available without limit. The air was controlled by a self-contained environmental control system with its own independent electrical-diesel generators. The facility was a miracle. It was shocking that this was made available for Almaz, while the military told Mishin that he would have to prepare the immense MKBS station in the uncontrolled environment, subject to frequent power blackouts, of the N1 facility. At Chelomei's facility, everything was completely checked out on earth prior to launch.

1971 May 6 - .
  • Almaz simulator delays. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Shatalov; Yeliseyev; Rukavishnikov. Program: Salyut; Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 10; Soyuz 11. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. The Soyuz 10 cosmonauts hold a press conference. The truth behind the mission is concealed. Afterwards a simulator program review is held. Progress is being made, but all of the equipment needed for the simulators is not being funded. MAP is to deliver the Almaz simulator on 1 December 1971, but they can't guarantee it will include equipment that has to be delivered by a range of other ministries. Later a meeting is held on plans by the Moscow Soviet for a space museum. MOM, MAP, and VVS have to contribute to the final exposition plan.

1971 June 16 - .
  • Soyuz 11 Day 11 - fire aboard the station. - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Chelomei; Mishin; Popovich; Sevastyanov; Khrunov; Volynov; Shatalov; Dobrovolsky; Patsayev; Volkov; Nikolayev; Bykovsky. Program: Salyut; Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 11. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7KT-OK; Salyut 1; Almaz OPS; Soyuz OB-VI; Soyuz VI. Kamanin is to fly back to Yevpatoriya in the afternoon. Chelomei is often ill lately -- Mishin is using the opportunity to lobby Ustinov and Smirnov to kill Almaz, and increase the DOS-7K order from four to ten. Mishin killed Kozlov's Soyuz VI in a similar manner. Prior to his departure, the cosmonauts brief Kamanin on the results of the visits of Popovich and Sevastyanov to France, and Khrunov to the USA. Kamanin is having trouble with the leadership in allowing Volynov to be assigned to another crew.

    As Kamanin is on the way to the airport, a serious situation develops aboard the station. At 13:00 the cosmonauts report a strong burning smell, and smoke in the station. The crew evacuates the station and retreat to the Soyuz lifeboat. Forty minutes later, just as Kamanin is boarding the Tu-104, Shatalov reports that the mission will continue, but the situation aboard the station is not comfortable. The crew has turned off the primary oxygen regenerator and exchanged the filters of the oxygen supply and reserve regenerator. At 14:05 Kamanin finally boards the aircraft, which takes off and sets course for the Crimea. At 14:30 they are ordered to turn around and land at Chkalovksy Airfield outside Moscow. The whole thing turns out to be a banal mistake by one of the officers at an air traffic control station! They lose two hours in the process. No information is available when the Tu-104 finally lands at Saki, since Nikolayev and the other cosmonauts who attended the emergency meetings had taken off to return to Moscow three hours earlier. Kamanin finally arrives at Yevpatoriya at 23:00, in time for a comms session with Dobrovolsky and Patsayev (Volkov is sleeping). The Soyuz 11 crew reports that the training suits are very tiring. Dobrovolsky reports all is now normal otherwise. He requests permission to continue the flight. Bykovsky reports that the situation on the station is now stable. There is no more smoke or burning smell, but the crew has been overloaded in the last six hours. They have done a lot of work with no food or rest. The situation was so bad at one point that preparations had been made for undocking the Soyuz for an emergency return to earth.


1972 January 1 - . LV Family: N1; RT-2.
  • TsKBEM reorganised - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Mishin; Dorofeyev; Bushuyev; Semenov; Shabarov. Program: Lunar L3; Soyuz; Almaz. Spacecraft: LK; Soyuz 7K-LOK; Soyuz 7K-TM; Soyuz 7K-T; Soyuz 7K-S; Soyuz 7K-OK; MKBS; Mars 5NM. TsKBEM was given a completely new structure as a result of the findings of the expert commissions on the disasters for the previous year, Mishin remained as the Chief Designer for the organisation, but each programme now had its own chief designer:

    • N1: Boris Dorofeyev
    • 8K98P solid propellant ICBM: Igor Sadovskiy
    • N1 payloads: Vladimir Brorov [check]
    • Soyuz 7K-TM, or Soyuz M, for Soyuz-Apollo: Konstantin Bushuyev
    • Soyuz 7K-T: Yuri Semenov
    • Soyuz 7K-S or Soyuz VI: Yevgeni Shabarov
    Additional Details: here....

1972 December 31 - . LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton 8K82K.
  • Brezhnev selects Almaz for next space station - . Nation: USSR. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned space station. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. Summary: Brezhnev personally selects Almaz for next space station launch. Following two successive failures of DOS-7K station (Salyut 1 and the July 29, 1972 launch failure), Brezhnev personally selects Almaz for next launch (Salyut 2)..

1973 April 3 - . 09:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC81/23. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 283-01.
  • Salyut 2 - . Payload: Almaz s/n 101-01. Mass: 18,500 kg (40,700 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned space station. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. Duration: 54.62 days. Decay Date: 1973-05-28 . USAF Sat Cat: 6398 . COSPAR: 1973-017A. Apogee: 248 km (154 mi). Perigee: 216 km (134 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 89.10 min. The first flight of the Almaz manned military space station. In January 1973 the first Almaz OPS was delivered to Baikonur. Launch and initial orbital checkout went according to plan. But before a crew could be launched the station depressurized. It was concluded that a short in electrical equipment started a fire in pressure vessel, leading to rupture of hull and depressurization. An alternate theory was that debris from an explosion of the third stage of Proton penetrated the hull. Control was lost on April 25, 1973, and the OPS cased operations on 29 April. Decayed May 28, 1973. Initial crew was to have been Popovich and Artyukhin.
    Officially: Testing of improved design, on-board systems and equipment; conduct of scientific and technical research and experiments. Additional Details: here....

1973 June - .
1973 August - .
1974 May 27 - . 07:20 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511.
  • Cosmos 656 - . Payload: Soyuz 7K-T(A9) s/n 61. Mass: 6,675 kg (14,715 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-T/A9. Duration: 2.01 days. Decay Date: 1974-05-29 . USAF Sat Cat: 7313 . COSPAR: 1974-036A. Apogee: 364 km (226 mi). Perigee: 195 km (121 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 90.00 min. Summary: Unmanned test flight of the Soyuz 7K-T(A9) Soyuz variant designed for docking with the military Almaz space station. Recovered May 29, 1974 7:50 GMT..

1974 June 24 - . 22:38 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC81/23. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 283-02.
  • Salyut 3 - . Payload: Almaz s/n 101-02. Mass: 18,500 kg (40,700 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned space station. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. Duration: 90.00 days. Decay Date: 1975-01-24 . USAF Sat Cat: 7342 . COSPAR: 1974-046A. Apogee: 253 km (157 mi). Perigee: 213 km (132 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 89.10 min. First successful Almaz military manned space station flight. Tested a wide array of reconnaissance sensors. Following the successful Soyuz 14 and unsuccessful Soyuz 15 missions, on 23 September 1974 the station ejected a film return capsule. The KSI capsule suffered damage during re-entry but all the film was recoverable. On 24 January 1975 trials of the on-board 23 mm Nudelmann aircraft cannon (other sources say it was a Nudelmann NR-30 30 mm gun) were conducted. The next day the station was commanded to retrofire to a destructive re-entry over the Pacific Ocean. Although only one of three planned crews managed to board the station, that crew did complete the first completely successful Soviet space station flight. Additional Details: here....

1974 July 3 - . 18:51 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511.
  • Soyuz 14 - . Call Sign: Berkut (Golden Eagle ). Crew: Artyukhin; Popovich. Backup Crew: Demin; Sarafanov. Support Crew: Rozhdestvensky; Volynov; Zholobov; Zudov. Payload: Soyuz 7K-T(A9) s/n 62. Mass: 6,800 kg (14,900 lb). Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Artyukhin; Popovich; Demin; Sarafanov; Rozhdestvensky; Volynov; Zholobov; Zudov. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Soyuz 14. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-T/A9. Duration: 15.73 days. Decay Date: 1974-07-19 . USAF Sat Cat: 7361 . COSPAR: 1974-051A. Apogee: 217 km (134 mi). Perigee: 195 km (121 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.60 min. On 4 July Soyuz 14 docked with the Salyut 3 space station after 15 revolutions of the earth. The planned experimental program included manned military reconnaissance of the earth's surface, assessing the fundamental value of such observations, and some supplemental medico-biological research. After the crew's return research continued in the development of the on-board systems and the principles of remote control of such a station.

1974 July 19 - .
  • Landing of Soyuz 14 - . Return Crew: Artyukhin; Popovich. Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Artyukhin; Popovich. Program: Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 14. Summary: All objectives were successfully completed and the spacecraft was recovered at 12:21 GMT, landing within 2 km of the aim point 140 km SE of Dzkezkazgan..

1974 August 26 - . 19:58 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511.
  • Soyuz 15 - . Call Sign: Duna (Danube ). Crew: Demin; Sarafanov. Backup Crew: Volynov; Zholobov. Support Crew: Rozhdestvensky; Zudov. Payload: Soyuz 7K-T(A9) s/n 63. Mass: 6,760 kg (14,900 lb). Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Demin; Sarafanov; Volynov; Zholobov; Rozhdestvensky; Zudov. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Soyuz 15. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-T/A9. Duration: 2.01 days. Decay Date: 1974-08-28 . USAF Sat Cat: 7421 . COSPAR: 1974-067A. Apogee: 236 km (146 mi). Perigee: 173 km (107 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.50 min. Soyuz 15 was to conduct the second phase of manned operations aboard the Salyut 3 military space station, but the Igla rendezvous system failed and no docking was made. The two day flight could only be characterised as '... research in manoeuvring and docking with the OPS in various modes, and development of methods for evacuation and landing from space complex in new conditions....'

    As Chelomei had complained, Soyuz had no reserves or backup systems for repeated manual docking attempts and had to be recovered after a two-day flight. The state commission found that the Igla docking system of the Soyuz needed serious modification. This could not be completed before Salyut 3 decayed. Therefore the planned Soyuz 16 spacecraft became excess to the program (it was later flown as Soyuz 20 to a civilian Salyut station, even though over its two year rated storage life).

    Officially: Conduct of joint experiments with the Salyut-3 orbital scientific station.


1974 August 28 - .
1976 June 22 - . 18:04 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC81/23. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 290-02.
  • Salyut 5 - . Payload: Almaz s/n 103-01. Mass: 19,000 kg (41,000 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned space station. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS. Duration: 411.24 days. Decay Date: 1977-08-08 . USAF Sat Cat: 8911 . COSPAR: 1976-057A. Apogee: 232 km (144 mi). Perigee: 215 km (133 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.90 min. Second successful flight of the Almaz manned military space station. It had taken only 60 days and 1450 man-hours to prepare Almaz 0101-2 for flight, using the services of 368 officers and 337 non-commissioned officers. The tracking ships Academician Sergei Korolev and Cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin were stationed in the Atlantic and Caribean to provide communications when out of tracking range of the USSR. Salyut 5 operated for 409 days, during which the crews of Soyuz 22 and 24 visited the station. Soyuz 23 was to have docked but its long-distance rendezvous system failed. Soyuz 25 was planned, but the mission would have been incomplete due to low orientation fuel on Salyut 5, so it was cancelled.

    During the flight of Salyut 5 a 'parallel crew' was aboard a duplicate station on the ground. They conducted the same operations in support of over 300 astrophysical, geophysical, technological, and medical/biological experiments. Astrophysics studies included an infrared telescope-spectrometer in the 2-15 micrometer range which also obtained solar spectra. Earth resources studies were conducted as well as Kristall, Potok, Diffuziya, Sfera, and Reatsiya technology experiments. Presumably Salyut 5 was equipped with a SAR side-looking radar for reconnaissance of land and sea targets even through cloud cover.

    The film capsule was ejected 22 February 1977 (and sold at Sotheby's, New York, on December 11, 1993!). The station was deorbited on 8 August 1977. In addition to the human crew two Russian tortoises (Testudo horsfieldi) and Zebrafish (Danio rerio) were flown.

    The results of the Salyut 3 and 5 flights showed that manned reconnaissance was not worth the expense. There was minimal time to operate the equipment after the crew took the necessary time for maintenance of station housekeeping and environmental control systems. The experiments themselves showed good results and especially the value of reconnaissance of the same location in many different spectral bands and parts of the electromagnetic spectrum. Additional Details: here....


1976 July 6 - . 12:08 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Soyuz 21 - . Call Sign: Baikal (Baikal - lake in Siberia). Crew: Volynov; Zholobov. Backup Crew: Rozhdestvensky; Zudov. Support Crew: Berezovoi; Glazkov; Gorbatko; Lisun. Payload: Soyuz 7K-T(A9) s/n 41. Mass: 6,800 kg (14,900 lb). Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Volynov; Zholobov; Rozhdestvensky; Zudov; Berezovoi; Glazkov; Gorbatko; Lisun. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Soyuz 21. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-T/A9. Duration: 49.27 days. Decay Date: 1976-08-24 . USAF Sat Cat: 8934 . COSPAR: 1976-064A. Apogee: 274 km (170 mi). Perigee: 246 km (152 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 89.70 min. Soyuz 21 with Volynov and Zholobov aboard hard-docked with the station on 6 July 1976 after failure of the Igla system at the last stage of rendezvous. Towards the end of the two month mission an early return to earth was requested due to the poor condition of flight engineer Zholobov (who was suffering from space sickness and psychological problems).

1976 August 24 - .
  • Landing of Soyuz 21 - . Return Crew: Volynov; Zholobov. Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Volynov; Zholobov. Program: Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 21. The crew landed in very bad physical and mental condition 200 km SW of Kokchetav at 18:33 GMT. It was determined that they had become emotional, not followed their physical training, and developed an unreasonable desire to return to earth. The possibility also existed that there were toxic gases in the station.

1976 October 14 - . 17:39 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Soyuz 23 - . Call Sign: Radon (Radon ). Crew: Rozhdestvensky; Zudov. Backup Crew: Glazkov; Gorbatko. Support Crew: Berezovoi; Lisun. Payload: Soyuz 7K-T(A9) s/n 65. Mass: 6,760 kg (14,900 lb). Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Rozhdestvensky; Zudov; Glazkov; Gorbatko; Berezovoi; Lisun. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Soyuz 23. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-T/A9. Duration: 2.00 days. Decay Date: 1976-10-16 . USAF Sat Cat: 9477 . COSPAR: 1976-100A. Apogee: 269 km (167 mi). Perigee: 239 km (148 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 89.50 min. The Soyuz 23 ferry spacecraft suffered a docking system failure. Sensors indicated an incorrect lateral velocity, causing unnecessary firing of the thrusters during rendezvous. The automatic system was turned off, but no fuel remained for a manual docking by the crew.

1976 October 16 - .
  • Landing of Soyuz 23 - . Return Crew: Rozhdestvensky; Zudov. Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Rozhdestvensky; Zudov. Program: Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 23. The capsule landed at 17:46 GMT in Lake Tengiz in -20 deg C conditions in a snowstorm. The wet parachute filled and dragged the capsule below the surface, cooling the capsule. Heating systems had to be turned off in the capsule to conserve battery power. Amphibious vehicles attempted to recover the spacecraft but could not reach it. Finally swimmers managed to attach a cable to a helicopter. The capsule was dragged for kilometres across the icy sea. Only in the morning was the crew able to emerge from the capsule. The recovery crews were surprised they were still alive.

1976 December 15 - . 01:30 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC81/24. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 289-02.
  • Cosmos 881 - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 009P. Mass: 4,250 kg (9,360 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: TKS VA . Duration: 0.0600 days. Decay Date: 1976-12-15 . USAF Sat Cat: 9606 . COSPAR: 1976-121A. Apogee: 241 km (149 mi). Perigee: 201 km (124 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.90 min. Launch of mission LVI-1 came at 04:00 on 15 December. At 176 seconds the ADU escape tower separated from the LVI. Once the final stage had shut down in orbit, by command from the launch vehicle sequencer, the VA 009A (also given as 009P) and its TDU separated from the LVI. Two seconds later VA 009 (or 009L) was ejected. Fifteen minutes after launch all systems of the both VA capsules were in operation. The guidance system detected the direction of flight and oriented each spacecraft for retro-fire, and the pair began the return to earth after less than one revolution. At an external atmospheric pressure of 165 mm (10 km altitude) the NO section jettisoned, the three-cupola drogue parachute ejected, and the antennae and altimeter were deployed. The Komara landing radio beacon (installed on the landing section of the parachute) was activated when the spacecraft was 1.0 to 1.5 m above the ground - which occurred at the same moment on both 009 and 009A. The Kaktus special system tripped the soft landing PRSP (parachute landing propulsion system). The soft landing was accomplished with higher accuracy than Soyuz, both capsules being recovered at 44 deg N, 73 deg E, on December 15, 1976 3:00 GMT. The flights were officially given the designations Cosmos 881 (VA 009A) and Cosmos 882 (VA 009). US intelligence believed them to be tests of recoverable manned spaceplane prototypes.
  • Cosmos 882 - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 009L. Mass: 4,250 kg (9,360 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: TKS VA. Decay Date: 1976-12-15 . USAF Sat Cat: 9607 . COSPAR: 1976-121B. Apogee: 213 km (132 mi). Perigee: 191 km (118 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.50 min. Summary: Test of TKS-VA capsule. Two satellites launched by a single rocket..

1977 February 7 - . 16:10 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC1. LV Family: R-7. Launch Vehicle: Soyuz 11A511U.
  • Soyuz 24 - . Call Sign: Terek (Terek - river in the Caucasus). Crew: Glazkov; Gorbatko. Backup Crew: Berezovoi; Lisun. Support Crew: Kozelsky; Preobrazhensky. Payload: Soyuz 7K-T(A9) s/n 66. Mass: 6,800 kg (14,900 lb). Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Glazkov; Gorbatko; Berezovoi; Lisun; Kozelsky; Preobrazhensky. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Soyuz 24. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-T/A9. Duration: 17.73 days. Decay Date: 1977-02-25 . USAF Sat Cat: 9804 . COSPAR: 1977-008A. Apogee: 264 km (164 mi). Perigee: 226 km (140 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 89.30 min. Soyuz 24 docked with Salyut 5 and brought repair equipment and equipment for a change of cabin atmosphere. This special apparatus was designed to allow the entire station to be vented through the EVA airlock. Because of this the planned EVA was cancelled. However analysis after arrival showed no toxins in the air. The crew changed the cabin air anyway, then returned to earth. The mission, although a short 18 days, was characterised as a busy and successful mission, accomplishing nearly as much as the earlier Soyuz 21's 50 day mission.

1977 February 25 - .
1977 July - .
  • Soyuz 25A (cancelled) - . Crew: Berezovoi; Lisun. Backup Crew: Kozelsky; Preobrazhensky. Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Chelomei; Glushko; Berezovoi; Lisun; Kozelsky; Preobrazhensky. Program: Almaz. Flight: Soyuz 25A. Spacecraft: Soyuz 7K-T. A Soyuz 25 mission to the Salyut 5 space station with the crew of Berzovoi and Lisun was to have followed Soyuz 24. However during the four months it took to prepare the Soyuz, Salyut 5 consumed higher than expected fuel in maintaining the station's orientation. The flight was cancelled and the spacecraft allocated for Soyuz 25 flew as Soyuz 30 to Glushko's civilian Salyut station.

1977 July 17 - . 09:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC81/24. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 293-02.
  • Cosmos 929 - . Payload: TKS s/n 16101. Mass: 19,000 kg (41,000 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: TKS . Duration: 199.62 days. Decay Date: 1978-02-02 . USAF Sat Cat: 10146 . COSPAR: 1977-066A. Apogee: 260 km (160 mi). Perigee: 226 km (140 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 89.40 min. First test of TKS manned shuttle. Maneuvered extensively. TKS-VA capsule returned to earth August 16, 1977. Deorbited February 2, 1978.
    Maneuver Summary:
    214 km X 261 km orbit to 215 km X 279 km orbit. Delta V: 5 m/s
    207 km X 261 km orbit to 208 km X 264 km orbit. Delta V: 1 m/s
    208 km X 260 km orbit to 209 km X 267 km orbit. Delta V: 2 m/s
    192 km X 222 km orbit to 219 km X 232 km orbit. Delta V: 9 m/s
    219 km X 232 km orbit to 303 km X 327 km orbit. Delta V: 51 m/s
    303 km X 327 km orbit to 312 km X 318 km orbit. Delta V: 4 m/s
    312 km X 319 km orbit to 314 km X 325 km orbit. Delta V: 1 m/s
    284 km X 294 km orbit to 290 km X 301 km orbit. Delta V: 3 m/s
    288 km X 300 km orbit to 286 km X 305 km orbit. Delta V: 1 m/s
    285 km X 303 km orbit to 439 km X 447 km orbit. Delta V: 84 m/s
    437 km X 448 km orbit to 335 km X 437 km orbit. Delta V: 31 m/s
    335 km X 437 km orbit to 337 km X 438 km orbit. Delta V: 1 m/s
    337 km X 438 km orbit to 90 km X 337 km orbit. Delta V: 100 m/s
    Total Delta V: 193/293 m/s
    Officially: Investigation of the upper atmosphere and outer space.

1977 August 4 - . 22:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC81/24. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 293-01. FAILURE: First stage engine steering unit failure at T+40.1 seconds. Failed Stage: 1.
  • TKS VA s/n 009L/P - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 009L/P. Mass: 4,250 kg (9,360 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: RVSN. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: TKS VA. Decay Date: 1977-08-04 . COSPAR: F770804A. Summary: Spacecraft lost in booster explosion..
  • TKS VA s/n 009P/P - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 009P/P. Nation: USSR. Agency: RVSN. Program: Almaz. Spacecraft: TKS VA. COSPAR: F770804C. A repeat test of the VA capsules from LVI-1 of a month earlier were atop the Proton (VA's 009P and 009L). However the booster failed at 49 seconds after launch. The SAS launch escape system pulled the top capsule (009P) away from the exploding Proton rocket and it was successfully recovered. The lower capsule was lost with the booster.

1978 - During the year - .
  • Manned Almaz program terminated - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Chelomei; Glushko; Ustinov. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned space station. Spacecraft: Almaz OPS-2; TKS. Almaz station portion of the project already severely cut back after Marshal Grechko's heart attack in early 1976. Chelomei lost his most active patron and was unable to withstand the slow strangulation of his projects by Ustinov and Glushko. Almaz finally completely scrapped in 1980, but Chelomei hid the completed space stations in a corner of his complex, labelling them as 'radioactive material'. Chelomei finally forced to retire in October 1983. TKS shuttle craft used to dock with Salyut stations but never in manned mode. Following Ustinov's death, Almaz stations finally flown as unmanned radarsats, but Chelomei did not live to see this.

1978 March 30 - . 00:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC81/24. Launch Pad: LC81/24?. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 292-01.
  • Cosmos 997 - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 102L. Mass: 4,250 kg (9,360 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Cosmos 997. Spacecraft: TKS VA . Decay Date: 1978-03-30 . USAF Sat Cat: 10770 . COSPAR: 1978-032A. Apogee: 230 km (140 mi). Perigee: 200 km (120 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.70 min. Given the on-pad explosion of the LVI-2 launch attempt, plans to crew the upper VA re-entry capsule in the next test was abandoned. LVI-3 (VA's 102P and 102L / Cosmos 997 and Cosmos 998) was launched unmanned four months behind the original schedule. Both capsules were recovered after one orbit. One source indicates that one of the capsules was 009P, on its third launch and second flight to orbit. This was said to have demonstrated the multiple re-entry capability of the heat shield and the first planned reuse of a spacecraft (Gemini 2 was refurbished and reflown as MOL-1 in the 1960's, but was not designed for that purpose).
  • Cosmos 998 - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 102P. Mass: 4,250 kg (9,360 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: TKS VA. Decay Date: 1978-03-30 . USAF Sat Cat: 10771 . COSPAR: 1978-032B. Apogee: 230 km (140 mi). Perigee: 200 km (120 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.70 min. Summary: Dual reentry test of two TKS-VA capsules. Recovered March 30, 1978 after one orbit..

1979 April 20 - .
  • TKS VA s/n 103 - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 103. Mass: 4,250 kg (9,360 lb). Nation: USSR. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: TKS VA .

1979 April 20 - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC81/24.
  • TKS VA s/n 008 - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 008. Mass: 4,250 kg (9,360 lb). Nation: USSR. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: TKS VA s/n 008. Spacecraft: TKS VA . On 20 April 1979 LVI-4 VA (VA s/n 103 and s/n 008) was awaiting launch. The booster ignited, but then shut down on the pad. This triggered the launch escape system, which pulled the top capsule away from the booster. The parachute system failed and the capsule crashed to the ground. The lower capsule remained in the rocket. The top capsule was to have been manned, but the inability to demonstrate two consecutive failure-free launches of the Proton/TKS-VA combination made that (luckily) impossible.

1979 April 20 - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC81/24. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton 8K82K s/n 300-02. FAILURE: Engines ignited but immediately shut down on launch pad. Booster could be reused with new payload.. Failed Stage: 1.
  • - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 008. Nation: USSR. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: TKS VA . Decay Date: 1979-05-23 . USAF Sat Cat: 11362 . Apogee: 223 km (138 mi). Perigee: 193 km (119 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.70 min.

1979 May 22 - . 23:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC81/24. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 300-02.
  • Cosmos 1100 - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 102P. Mass: 4,250 kg (9,360 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Cosmos 1100. Spacecraft: TKS VA . Duration: 0.0600 days. Decay Date: 1979-05-23 . USAF Sat Cat: 11362 . COSPAR: 1979-042A. Apogee: 222 km (137 mi). Perigee: 193 km (119 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.60 min. The Proton launch vehicle that shut down on the original LVI-4 launch attempt was undamaged, and just a month later, with a switch of payload, LVI-4 was orbited as Cosmos 1100 and 1101. The pair launched were the 102P/102L twins from LVI-3. One capsule failed when the automatic system suffered an electrical distribution failure and it did not land correctly, spending two orbits in space, while the other landed as planned after one orbit. The launch again successfully demonstrated the reusability of the VA capsule. Plans to launch the upper capsule manned were scrubbed due to the inability to get two consecutive failure-free launches of the Proton/TKS-VA.
  • Cosmos 1101 - . Payload: TKS VA s/n 102L. Mass: 4,250 kg (9,360 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: TKS VA. Decay Date: 1979-05-23 . USAF Sat Cat: 11363 . COSPAR: 1979-042B. Apogee: 222 km (137 mi). Perigee: 193 km (119 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.60 min. Summary: Test of TKS-VA manned capsule. Two satellites launched by a single rocket..

1981 Beginning of - .
1981 Middle of - .
1981 April 25 - . 02:01 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC200/39. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 299-02.
  • Cosmos 1267 - . Payload: TKS s/n 16301. Mass: 19,000 kg (41,000 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: TKS . Duration: 459.91 days. Decay Date: 1982-07-29 . USAF Sat Cat: 12419 . COSPAR: 1981-039A. Apogee: 259 km (160 mi). Perigee: 192 km (119 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 88.90 min. TKS space station ferry. Flown unmanned to the Salyut 6 space station after the Almaz military station program was cancelled. Capsule recovered 24 May 1981. Docked with Salyut 6 on June 19 at 10:52 AM MT after 57 days autonomous flight. Deorbited and destroyed with Salyut July 29, 1982. Additional Details: here....

1981 Late - .
1982 First half - .
1983 March 2 - . 09:37 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC200/39. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 309-02.
  • Cosmos 1443 - . Payload: TKS-M s/n 16401L. Mass: 20,000 kg (44,000 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Spacecraft: TKS . Duration: 200.62 days. Decay Date: 1983-09-19 . USAF Sat Cat: 13868 . COSPAR: 1983-013A. Apogee: 261 km (162 mi). Perigee: 194 km (120 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 89.00 min. TKS manned ferry spacecraft from the cancelled Almaz OPS-4 mission. Flown unmanned to the Salyut 7 space station. Docked with Salyut 7 on 4 March 1983. Separated from Salyut 7 on 14 August. The VA re-entry capsule separated and the space station deorbited itself on September 19, 1983 at 0:28 GMT. The VA capsule continued in space for four more days, demonstrating autonomous flight, before successfully re-entering on 23 August 1983. Returned 350 kg of material from the station. Additional Details: here....

1985 September 27 - . 08:41 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC200/39. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 331-01.
  • Cosmos 1686 - . Payload: TKS-M s/n 16501. Mass: 20,000 kg (44,000 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Salyut 7 EO-4-1a; Salyut 7 EO-4-2. Spacecraft: TKS . Duration: 1,958.80 days. Decay Date: 1991-02-07 . USAF Sat Cat: 16095 . COSPAR: 1985-086A. Apogee: 284 km (176 mi). Perigee: 280 km (170 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 90.20 min. Modification of cancelled TKS manned ferry; docked with Salyut 7. All landing systems were removed from the VA re-entry capsule and replaced with military optical sensor experiments (infrared telescope and Ozon spectrometer). Burned up in the atmosphere and together with the Salyut 7 station over Argentina on February 7, 1991 04:00 GMT. Re-entered with unused 3 m diameter recoverable capsule of 2-3,000 kg mass, solid rocket motors, and cesium sensors.

    Maneuver Summary:
    172 km X 302 km orbit to 284 km X 319 km orbit. Delta V: 36 m/s
    281 km X 315 km orbit to 290 km X 336 km orbit. Delta V: 8 m/s
    290 km X 336 km orbit to 335 km X 352 km orbit. Delta V: 16 m/s
    Maneuvers after docking with Salyut 7:
    336 km X 353 km orbit to 338 km X 358 km orbit. Delta V: 1 m/s
    338 km X 358 km orbit to 358 km X 359 km orbit. Delta V: 5 m/s
    331 km X 333 km orbit to 333 km X 385 km orbit. Delta V: 14 m/s
    333 km X 385 km orbit to 332 km X 468 km orbit. Delta V: 23 m/s
    332 km X 468 km orbit to 466 km X 468 km orbit. Delta V: 37 m/s
    466 km X 468 km orbit to 470 km X 475 km orbit. Delta V: 2 m/s
    470 km X 475 km orbit to 475 km X 475 km orbit. Delta V: 1 m/s
    Total Delta V: 143 m/s
    Officially: Testing the equipment, assemblies and design components of a satellite in various modes of flight, including joint flight with the Salyut-7 station.

1986 November 29 - . 08:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC200/40. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 338-01. FAILURE: Second stage explosion.. Failed Stage: 2.
  • Almaz-T s/n 303 Failure - . Payload: Almaz-K s/n 303. Mass: 18,550 kg (40,890 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: UNKS. Program: Almaz. Class: Surveillance. Type: Civilian surveillance radar satellite. Spacecraft: Almaz-T. Decay Date: 1986-12-29 . COSPAR: F861129A. Summary: In the second half of 1986 the first Almaz-T s/n 303 was readied for launch. General V V Favorskiy ordered it to be completed and launched with a full-up lab module in place of trials equipment. Unfortunately did not reach orbit..

Middle of 1987 - .
  • Soyuz-Almaz-T-1 (cancelled) - . Nation: USSR. Related Persons: Ustinov. Program: Almaz. Flight: Soyuz-Almaz-T-1. On 29 November 1986 the first Almaz-T space station was launched. Unfortunately the Proton second stage exploded on the way to orbit. The planned manned flight to the station was cancelled. At the beginning of 1987 it was decided not to man the next Almaz-T, instead operate it in a fully automatic mode. Thus was the final Almaz cosmonaut training group disbanded.

1987 July 25 - . 09:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC200/40. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 347-01.
  • Cosmos 1870 - . Payload: Almaz-K s/n 304. Mass: 18,550 kg (40,890 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Surveillance. Type: Civilian surveillance radar satellite. Spacecraft: Almaz-T. Duration: 734.00 days. Decay Date: 1989-07-29 . USAF Sat Cat: 18225 . COSPAR: 1987-064A. Apogee: 278 km (172 mi). Perigee: 263 km (163 mi). Inclination: 71.9000 deg. Period: 89.90 min. First flight of Almaz radars imaging satellite taken out of mothballs after death of Ustinov. At the beginning of 1987 it was decided not to man the Almaz-T, instead operate it in a fully automatic mode. Thus the final Almaz cosmonaut training group was disbanded. Cosmos 1870 conducted remote sensing of the earth's surface, oceans and seas in the interests of various branches of science and the economy. Its side-looking radar had a 20-25 m ground resolution and functioned throughout its two year service life.

1991 March 31 - . 15:12 GMT - . Launch Site: Baikonur. Launch Complex: Baikonur LC200/40. LV Family: Proton. Launch Vehicle: Proton-K. LV Configuration: Proton-K 365-01.
  • Almaz 1 - . Payload: Almaz-K s/n 305. Mass: 18,550 kg (40,890 lb). Nation: USSR. Agency: MOM. Program: Almaz. Class: Surveillance. Type: Civilian surveillance radar satellite. Spacecraft: Almaz-T. Decay Date: 1992-10-17 . USAF Sat Cat: 21213 . COSPAR: 1991-024A. Apogee: 351 km (218 mi). Perigee: 337 km (209 mi). Inclination: 72.7000 deg. Period: 91.40 min. Second flight of Almaz radar imaging satellite. Surveyed the territory of the Soviet Union and of other countries for purposes of geology, cartography, oceanology, ecology and agriculture, and studied the ice situation at high latitudes. Launched eight months after its target date into an initial operational orbit of approximately 270 km with an inclination of 72.7 degrees, slightly higher than the 71.9 degrees inclination of Cosmos 1870. Unfortunately, the failure of one of the SAR antennas to deploy fully rendered that side inoperable. Returned images of 10 to 15 meter resolution through 17 October 1992. Its radiometer provided images of 10 to 30 km radiometer resolution over a 600 km swath. Its engines completed 760,000 firings during its 18 month service life.

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