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Utkin, Vladimir Fedorovich
Russian chief designer. Deputy Chief Designer 1961-1971 of Yangel design bureau. Succeeded Yangel as Chief Designer in 1971. After the breakup of the Soviet Union, left the Ukraine in 1990 to become head of TsAGI in Moscow.

Born: 1923-10-17. Died: 2000-02-15.



An outstanding scientist and designer in the field of space rocket engineering. A General Designer – General Director of Yuzhnoye DO (1971 - 1990). Doctor of Engineering (1967), Academician of Academy of Sciences of Ukraine (1976), Academician of Academy of Sciences of the USSR (1984), Academician of Russian Academy of Sciences (1992), Full Member of International Academy of Astronautics, President of Russian Academy.

Vladimir Fyodorovich Utkin was born in the village of Pustobor, Yerakhtursky district, Ryazan' region. After he had left secondary school, he was drafted into the army, fought at the fronts of Great Patriotic War, was awarded combat decorations. After he had graduated from Reaction Weapon Department of Leningrad Military Mechanical Institute in 1952, V.F. Utkin was sent to Dniepropetrovsk to the Special Design Office of Plant ? 586 were he was engaged with organization of series production of first Soviet ballistic missiles R-1, R-2, R-5 of Chief Designer S.P. Korolev. After establishment of Yuzhnoye DO, he worked in the position of Engineer, Senior Engineer, Head of Team, Head of Sector, Head of Department, Deputy and First Deputy Chief Designer. After M.K. Yangel death, he became Chief Designer and then General Designer of Yuzhnoye DO. From 1990 to 2000, V.F. Utkin worked as a General Director of TsNII MASh in Russia.

In the position of Yuzhnoye DO General Designer, Vladimir Fyodorovich was a worthy continuer of the concepts of his genius predecessor; the ideas and projects conceived in Yangel's time were converted into real hardware. Under his leadership, Yuzhnoye DO created and put into service the strategic missile systems having no analogs in the world and being the basis of defense potential of the Soviet Union and then Russia. One of his significant achievements was creation of the most powerful and effective liquid-propellant intercontinental ballistic missile SS-18, which was named “Satan” by the Americans and sold-propellant ICBM SS-24 (“Scalpel”) of silo and railroad basing mode. The highly effective and reliable space rocket systems Cyclone, Zenit and a wide range of spacecraft for military, scientific and national economy purposes were developed and put into service.

Under his leadership, a number of very complex scientific and technical problems were solved, and as a result, the leak-tightness of propellant systems and long-term missile staying on alert in fuelled condition, pop-up launch of heavy missiles from container, enemy's anti-missile defense penetration were ensured. The reliable protection of silos, missile resistance to nuclear attack damaging factors, high combat readiness and high missile firing accuracy were achieved. The combat railroad system with SS-24 missile by its characteristics has no analogs in the world's rocket-building.

V.F. Utkin subtly understood the requirements of time to prospective launch vehicles, in respect of ecology, launch operation automation, launch readiness periods et al. As a result, with the leading role of Yuzhnoye DO, the cooperation of the USSR's rocket companies, academic and industry institutes, military agencies had built the world's best medium-class space launcher Zenit within short time, which subsequently became the basis of successful international projects Sea Launch and Land Launch.

V.F. Utkin was an active participant in international cooperation in space research and exploration, including Interkosmos project. Jointly with the French specialists, the Arcad project was implemented using Oreol satellite, in cooperation with India, Ariabata, Bhaskara satellites were built and launched into orbit.

V.F. Utkin is the author and co-author of more than 200 scientific works: projects, articles, inventions.

He took an active part in social life, management of state affairs. He was many times elected a Deputy of Supreme Soviet of the USSR (1972-1991), a member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the USSR (1976-1991).

Twice Hero of Socialist Labor (1969, 1976). Laureate of Lenin Prize (1964) and State Prize (1980). He was decorated with Medal “For Labor Merit” (1956), Order of Labor Red Banner (1959), Order of Lenin (1961, 1966, 1969, 1973, 1976, 1983).

Buried on Troyekurovskoye Cemetery in Moscow.

In memory of Vladimir Fyodorovich, the V.F. Utkin Gold and Silver Medal were instituted, with which scientists and designers are decorated for outstanding achievements in the field of space rocketry development.

Country: Russia. Agency: Yuzhnoye. Bibliography: 474, 6136.
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1923 October 17 - .
2000 February 15 - .

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