Military Review

Space Shuttle program: what happened and what didn't

85
The US STS (Space Transportation System, "Space Transportation System") is better known worldwide as the Space Shuttle ("Space Shuttle"). This program was implemented by NASA, its main goal was to create and use reusable manned transport spacecraft designed to deliver people and various cargoes to low-Earth orbits. Hence the name itself - "Space Shuttle".


They began working on the program in 1969 through the financing of two US government departments: NASA and the Department of Defense. Development and development work was carried out as part of a joint NASA and Air Force program. At the same time, specialists applied a number of technical solutions that had previously been tested on the lunar modules of the Apollo program of the 1960s: experiments with solid fuel accelerators, systems for separating them and receiving fuel from an external tank. The basis of the space transport system was to be made up of a reusable manned spacecraft. The system also included ground support systems (installation test and launch and landing complex of the Kennedy Space Center, located on aviation base Vandenburg, Florida), a flight control center in Houston (Texas), as well as data relay systems and communications via satellites and other means.

All the leading US aerospace companies took part in this program. The program was truly large-scale and national; various products and equipment for the Space Shuttle supplied more than 1000 companies from the 47 states. The contract for the construction of the first orbital ship in 1972 was won by Rockwell International. Construction of the first two shuttles began in June 1974 of the year.

The first flight of the space shuttle "Columbia". The outer fuel tank (center) is painted white only on the first two flights. In the future, the tank is not painted to reduce the weight of the system.

Description of the system

Structurally, the Space Shuttle reusable space transportation system included two rescued solid propellant accelerators that served as the first stage and an orbital reusable spacecraft (orbiter, orbiter) with three oxygen-hydrogen engines, as well as a large outboard fuel compartment, which formed the second stage. After the completion of the space flight program, the orbiter returned independently to Earth, where it landed on an aircraft runway on special runways.
Two solid rocket boosters operate for about two minutes after launch, accelerating the spacecraft and directing it. After that, at an altitude of about 45 kilometers, they are separated and, with the aid of a parachute system, they are driven into the ocean. After repair and recharge, they are used again.

The external fuel tank burning in the earth’s atmosphere, filled with liquid hydrogen and oxygen (fuel for main engines), is the only one-time element of the space system. The tank itself is also a framework for bonding solid fuel boosters to the spacecraft. It is discarded in flight approximately 8,5 minutes after take-off at an altitude of about 113 kilometers, most of the tank is burnt in the earth's atmosphere, and the remaining parts fall into the ocean.

The most famous and recognizable part of the system is the reusable shuttle spacecraft itself, the shuttle itself, the actual space shuttle itself, which is put into near-earth orbit. This shuttle serves as a training ground and platform for conducting scientific research in space, as well as a home for the crew, which may include from two to seven people. The shuttle itself is made on a plane scheme with a triangular wing in the plan. For landing, he uses the aircraft type landing gear. If solid rocket boosters are designed to be used up to 20 times, then the shuttle itself is up to 100 flights into space.

The size of the orbital ship compared to the "Union"

The American Space Shuttle system could put 185 kilometers and an 28 inclination to 24,4 tons into orbit when launching to the east from Cape Canaveral (Florida) and 11,3 tons when launching from Kennedy Space Flight Center into 500 kilometers orbit and inclining 55 ° . When launched from the Vandenberg Air Force Base (California, west coast), it was possible to withdraw up to 185 tons of cargo into a subpolar orbit with an altitude of 12 kilometers.

What was possible to realize, and what was left of what was left on paper

As part of the symposium, which was devoted to the implementation of the Space Shuttle program, it was held in October 1969, the shuttle's “father” George Muller noted: “Our goal is to reduce the cost of delivering a kilogram of payload to the Saturn-V to 2000-40 dollars per kilogram. So we can open a new era of space exploration. The challenge for the coming weeks and months for this symposium, as well as for NASA and the Air Force, is to ensure that we can achieve this. ” In general, the cost of launching payloads ranging from 100 to 90 dollars per kilogram was predicted for various options on the basis of the space shuttle Space Shuttle. Moreover, it was believed that the second generation shuttles would reduce the amount to 330-33 dollars per kilogram.

In fact, these figures were unattainable even close. Moreover, according to Muller’s calculations, the cost of launching the shuttle should have been 1-2,5 million dollars. In fact, according to NASA, the average cost of launching the shuttle was about 450 million dollars. And this significant difference can be called the main discrepancy between the stated goals and reality.

Shuttle "Endeavor" with an open cargo compartment

After completing the Space Transportation System program in 2011, we can already say with certainty what goals were achieved in its implementation, and which goals weren’t achieved.

The goals of the Space Shuttle have been achieved:

1. Realization of delivery of different types of cargo into orbit (upper stages, satellites, space station segments, including the ISS).
2. The possibility of repairing satellites located in low earth orbit.
3. The ability to return satellites back to Earth.
4. Ability to fly to 8 by sending people into space (during the rescue operation, the crew could be brought to 11 people).
5. Successful implementation of reusable flight and reusable use of the shuttle itself and solid accelerator boosters.
6. Implementation in practice of a fundamentally new layout of the spacecraft.
7. The possibility of the implementation of the ship horizontal maneuvers.
8. A large amount of cargo compartment, the ability to return to Earth cargo weighing up to 14,4 tons.
9. The cost and development time managed to meet the deadlines that were promised to US President Nixon in 1971 year.

Unmet goals and failures:
1. Quality access to space. Instead of reducing the cost of delivering a kilogram of cargo into orbit by two orders of magnitude, the Space Shuttle turned out to be one of the most expensive ways to deliver satellites to Earth orbit.
2. Quick preparation of space shuttle shuttles. Instead of the expected time limit, which was estimated at two weeks between launches, the shuttles could actually prepare for launching into space for months. Before the crash of the space shuttle Challenger, the record between flights was 54 days, after the disaster - 88 days. Over the entire period of their operation, they launched on average 4,5 times a year, while the minimum acceptable economically reasonable number of launches was 28 starts per year.
3. Ease of maintenance. The technical solutions chosen while creating the shuttles were rather time-consuming to maintain. The main engines required dismantling procedures and long service time. Turbopump units of the engines of the first model required their complete reassembly and repair after each flight into space. The heat protection tiles were unique - each tile had its own tile installed. In total, there were thousands of 35, in addition, the tiles could be damaged or lost during the flight.
4. Replacing all disposable media. Shuttles never launched into polar orbits, which was necessary mainly for the deployment of reconnaissance satellites. Preparatory work was carried out in this direction, but they were curtailed after the Challenger disaster.
5. Reliable access to space. Four space shuttles meant that the loss of any of them is a loss of 25% of the total fleet (there were always no more than 4 flying orbiters, the Endeavor shuttle was built to replace the deceased Challenger). After the crash, flights stopped for a long time, for example, after the Challenger crash - for 32 months.
6. Shuttle payload was 5 tons below the required specifications of the military (24,4 tons instead of 30 tons).
7. Greater horizontal maneuvering has never been used in practice because the shuttles did not fly to polar orbits.
8. The return of satellites from Earth's orbit has already stopped in the 1996 year, while all the 5 satellites have been returned from space.
9. Repair of satellites turned out to be poorly demanded. A total of 5 satellites were repaired, however, the shuttles also 5 once performed maintenance on the famous Hubble telescope.
10. Implemented engineering solutions had a negative impact on the reliability of the entire system. At the time of take-off and landing there were areas that did not leave the crew a chance to rescue in an emergency.
11. The fact that the shuttle could only make manned flights would put astronauts at risk unnecessarily, for example, for routine satellite launches into orbit, there would be enough automation.
12. The closure of the Space Shuttle program in 2011 overlapped the cancellation of the Constellation program. This was the reason for the loss of US independent access to space for many years. As a result, image losses and the need to acquire space for their astronauts on the spacecraft of another country (Russian manned spacecraft "Soyuz").

Shuttle Discovery performs a maneuver before docking with the ISS

Some statistics

The shuttles were designed to remain in Earth orbit for two weeks. Usually their flights lasted from 5 to 16 days. Record the shortest flight in stories the program is owned by the Columbia shuttle (killed along with the 1 crew February 2003 of the year, 28-th space flight), who spent the entire 1981 day of 2 hours and 6 minutes in November of 13 of the year. The same shuttle made the longest flight in November 1996 of the year - 17 days 15 hours 53 minutes.

In total, during this program, 1981 launches were performed by space shuttles from 2011 to 135, of which Discovery - 39, Atlantis - 33, Columbia - 28, Endeavor - 25, Challenger - 10 (died with the crew of 28 in January 1986 of the year). In total, the program has been built five of the above shuttle, which flew into space. One more shuttle, the Enterprise, was built first, but was originally intended only for testing ground and atmospheric tests, as well as carrying out preparatory work at launch sites, never flew into space.

It is worth noting that NASA planned to use the shuttles much more actively than it actually happened. Back in 1985, the American Space Agency experts expected that by the 1990, they would make the 24 launch every year, and the ships would fly to 100 space flights, but in practice, all 5 shuttles made only 30 flights in 135 years, two of which ended a disaster. The record for the number of flights into space belongs to the Discovery Shuttle - 39 flights into space (the first 30 of August 1984 of the year).

Landing shuttle "Atlantis"

American shuttles belong to the saddest anti-record among all space systems - in the number of people killed. Two accidents with their participation caused the death of X-NUMX American astronauts. On January 14, the Challenger shuttle collapsed as a result of an explosion in the external fuel tank. This happened on the 28 second flight and resulted in the death of all 1986 crew members, including the first non-professional astronaut, former teacher Christa McAuliffe, who won the nationwide American competition for the right to fly into space. The second crash occurred 73 February 7, during the return of the ship "Columbia" from its 1-th flight into space. The cause of the catastrophe was the destruction of the outer heat-shielding layer on the left plane of the wing of the shuttle, which was caused by the fall of a piece of thermal insulation of the oxygen tank on it at the time of launch. Upon returning, the shuttle fell apart in the air, killing 2003 astronauts.

The “Space Transport System” program was officially completed in 2011. All existing shuttles were written off and sent to museums. The last flight took place on July 8 2011 of the year and was carried out by the Atlantis shuttle with a crew reduced to 4 people. The flight ended early July 21 in the morning of July 2011. Over the 30 years of operation, these spacecraft performed 135 flights; in total, they performed 21 152 together around the Earth, delivering thousands of tons of various payloads to 1,6. The crews during this time included 355 people (306 men and 49 women) from 16 different countries. The astronaut Franklin Storey Musgrave was the only one who flew all five canoes.

Information sources:
https://geektimes.ru/post/211891
https://ria.ru/spravka/20160721/1472409900.html
http://www.buran.ru/htm/shuttle.htm
Based on materials from open sources
85 comments
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  1. kit88
    kit88 27 February 2018 17: 25
    +14
    They say that the shuttle is just a fraction of the “Big Project” (1970) that was not implemented by the mattresses.
    It is customary for us to consider that the shuttles were needed in order to bomb Moscow from space and to sweep the Soviet satellites from orbit.
    And the “Big Project” included: the construction of a large orbital station for 50 people, a small orbital station in the orbit of the Moon, the creation of an inhabited base on the Moon, landing on Mars ... Moreover, all orbital flights: supplying the station, delivering goods into orbit for long-distance expeditions blocks of ships for long-distance flights, crew changes, etc. in Earth orbit, should be carried out by the Space Shuttle reusable system.
    . There is such an opinion on the appointment of shuttles
    1. yehat
      yehat 28 February 2018 17: 51
      +2
      only subject to the achievement of the planned radical reduction in the cost of flights, which did not happen.
    2. igorserg
      igorserg April 18 2018 16: 09
      0
      Well, when the first satellite of the earth was launched, the Americans also thought that it was exclusively a means of nuclear weapons delivery.
      By the way, they say that Buran’s development intensified precisely after the Amer shuttle sank over Moscow, which meant the possibility of bombing from space.
  2. Usher
    Usher 27 February 2018 17: 26
    +7
    Whatever the shortcomings and goals, it is still a grandiose program. Like our programs.
    1. Simargl
      Simargl 26 June 2018 16: 31
      0
      Quote: Usher
      Like our programs.
      Only they have two implemented ones (Saturn and Space Shuttle), and we only have bitten N-1 and Buran.
      Of the relatively grandiose - the WORLD, but then they and the ISS surpassed us.
  3. KVU-NSVD
    KVU-NSVD 27 February 2018 17: 38
    +10
    Thanks to the author for the article: informative and without unnecessary technical information, and summarized in one readable article good
  4. andrewkor
    andrewkor 27 February 2018 17: 55
    +1
    And how many breakthrough technologies have been transferred to the "earth"!
  5. mvg
    mvg 27 February 2018 18: 30
    +6
    And how much money the USSR spent on the useless Buran-Energy in response to the shuttle.
    1. Cannonball
      Cannonball 27 February 2018 20: 21
      +16
      Energy and Buran were by no means useless. And it is not their fault that traitors and thieves came to power in the country.
      1. mvg
        mvg 28 February 2018 18: 04
        +4
        Would not be useless - would fly now. Money vbuhany just colossal, comparable to BAM'om. The country could not pull such a thing then. Succumbed to the provocation of the United States. Now the emphasis on light trucks is up to 9 tons of payload. It would be better if the satellite constellations were maintained in order.
        1. Cannonball
          Cannonball 28 February 2018 20: 46
          +3
          He does not fly for one reason - lack of money. And then, and later and now
          1. mvg
            mvg 28 February 2018 21: 00
            +3
            It does not fly, because it does not withstand competition for money per kg of withdrawal. And there are no tasks for it. There are many times more expensive than trucks. And nobody needs to lower the old satellites. All the same mistakes as the Shuttle. What he needs to fly, he needs to fly 20 times a year. And this is utopia. The business case for the program is simply brilliance. Probably they wanted to launch an aircraft carrier into space. Together with the whole AUG. You need to shoot for this.
            PS: It was necessary to keep the Legend and make your own Glonass. Is it possible not to calculate the needs at least 10 years in advance?
            1. Cannonball
              Cannonball 28 February 2018 21: 40
              +5
              What kind of competition are we talking about? The program was closed in the early 90s due to lack of money in the space industry. Due to lack of money, work on payloads for the Buran was stopped.
              They correctly wrote here, "Buran" was created primarily as a military machine, and not as a commercial barbhaik. And military tasks always stand above economic ones.
              And further. Systems like the Shuttles and the Buran made it possible to not only launch spacecraft into space, but also to return it back. And we are not talking about hundreds of kilograms, but about a dozen tons.
              1. mvg
                mvg 28 February 2018 22: 08
                +2
                Even then, money was counted on the accounts. And there were economists. Lack of money has begun overnight?
                Who needs to lower the satellite? Did the Americans miss a lot? How to catch him there in space? This is not a cat in a closed room.
                PS: The program is a complete failure. Yes, it was pleasant for the State. He was a child then, but now I look at it with a different look.
                There was just an article on the Space Shuttles at VO - well, clearly a provocation for the USSR was to get drawn into the race again.
                The USSR did not have such an expensive military failure program
                1. Cannonball
                  Cannonball 1 March 2018 21: 32
                  +3
                  Lack of money began in the late 80s, early 90s and continued until the end of the 90s.
                  There are spacecraft worth several hundred million dollars, and there are a billion worth. Prior to the development of the warranty period, it is cheaper to return, repair and restart them than to build a new one.
                  Using the Shuttle, the Americans returned the following spacecraft to Earth: SPAS 1, Palapa B2, Westar VI, LDEF, EURECA, Space Flyer Unit, ORFEUS-SPAS II, CRISTA-SPAS, SPARTAN 201 F4, SPARTAN 201 F5. Plus, the spacecraft was repaired in orbit: SolarMax, SYNCOM IV F3, Intelsat VI, Hubble Space Telescope (5 times).
                  Spacecraft in space is not too difficult to catch, not more difficult than to dock with an orbital station.
                  You were a child then, and I already worked in the space industry.
                  The Buran is not a failed program - it is a victim of the liberal-democratic views of the then leadership of the country.
                  1. nickname7
                    nickname7 2 March 2018 14: 50
                    +1
                    cheaper to return, repair and run again than to build a new one
                    Stupidity is complete, electronic stuffing, fails from radiation, it needs to be changed completely completely, it is better to start a new one.
                    and I already worked in the space industry
                    Judging by your incompetence, did you work as a loader?
                    1. Cannonball
                      Cannonball 2 March 2018 19: 48
                      +3
                      I am a leading design engineer for a space rocket company.
                      Before accusing me of stupidity, do not stoop to the level of a stupid sofa ikkder yourself.
                      I wrote in Russian “before the warranty period is worked out,” which means that electronic filling is simply obliged to maintain its performance characteristics during this period.
                      Imagine such a case - the spacecraft is completely new, the electronics are "zero", but during the launch into orbit, one solar panel did not open. It is impossible to use the spacecraft for its intended purpose in full. It turns out that the money was thrown to the wind.
                      What to do - spit on the loss and make a new spacecraft, having spent several hundred million dollars or return the failed device to Earth, figure out the cause of the failure, eliminate the cause and send it back into orbit? Which is cheaper and more practical?
          2. nickname7
            nickname7 2 March 2018 14: 44
            +1
            He does not fly for one reason - lack of money

            Once again, for those who are in the tank, shuttles, roads, even for America, for the simple reason that the same cargo can be sent cheaper. Even if there is a lot of money, why spend it so mediocre, artificially, increasing the cost of what can be done cheaper.
            1. Cannonball
              Cannonball 2 March 2018 19: 57
              +1
              Shuttles were expensive, no one argues with that. But this only became clear as shuttle service was in use. In hindsight we are all good.
              There is one more point - the shuttle is not only a launch vehicle, but also a large spacecraft, which gave the Americans and their allies the opportunity to carry out manned space flights. No other spaceship in the world can still lift more than three people into space at the same time, and the shuttle also displayed 8 each.
      2. DimerVladimer
        DimerVladimer 2 March 2018 11: 43
        +3
        Quote: Cannonball
        Energy and Buran were by no means useless. And it is not their fault that traitors and thieves came to power in the country.


        Unfortunately, their development did not bring any effect.
        Yes, design issues were resolved, but now those technologies are already outdated and the ship needs to be redesigned again.
        1. Cannonball
          Cannonball 2 March 2018 20: 01
          +2
          I think that the developments on Buran and Energy were used to some extent on other topics. This is especially true for some technologies, the latest materials and components.
          I agree, if the task now arises of something similar, then it hardly makes sense to return to the past. However, experience and developments can very well be used to create new systems.
      3. nickname7
        nickname7 2 March 2018 14: 35
        0
        Energy and Buran were by no means useless

        Energy-Buran were exactly that, useless because on chemical rockets, many times and return is always more expensive than disposable ones.
        1. Cannonball
          Cannonball 2 March 2018 20: 02
          0
          Then give people no chemical rockets. And do not fool their head with their delirium.
    2. yehat
      yehat 28 February 2018 17: 54
      +4
      The snowstorm was much more perfect than the shuttle, although the quality level of the shuttle's thermal insulation on it did not work. Its carrier energy was more reliable.
      if used, the cost of flights would be about 3 times lower than the shuttle.
      Buran’s construction program is so large and complex that it’s even hard to imagine it.
      1. karish
        karish 28 February 2018 22: 12
        +3
        Quote: yehat
        Buran was much more perfect shuttle

        Can I voice what?
        Quote: yehat
        if used, the cost of flights would be about 3 times lower than the shuttle

        I hope you can confirm?
        Although the key word is if

        Quote: yehat
        Buran’s construction program is so large and complex that it’s even hard to imagine it.

        Well, the shuttle is certainly easier wink
        1. Cannonball
          Cannonball 1 March 2018 21: 34
          +1
          The Buran could land automatically, which Shuttle was not available.
          The shuttle is written with two letters "TT". wink
          1. Town Hall
            Town Hall 1 March 2018 21: 44
            +1
            Quote: Cannonball
            Buran "could land automatically, which Shuttle was not available.



            Who told you this joke?
            1. Cannonball
              Cannonball 1 March 2018 21: 54
              +1
              What about a joke about the Buran or the Shuttle?
              Please remind me when the Shuttle landed automatically?
              And “Buran” spent its entire flight in automatic mode, including pre-landing maneuvers in the atmosphere and the landing itself.
              The shuttle was controlled by a pilot.
              1. Town Hall
                Town Hall 2 March 2018 02: 02
                +1
                The entire flight of the Shuttle took place automatically. Including landing. The only moment when the pilots took control, immediately before touching the runway and the moment of touching. Moreover, this was done at the request of the pilots themselves, as it is considered more accurate and safe than trusting the automation.


                In aviation, too, by the way, the autopilot leads the plane literally up to several meters to the runway, but the touch itself is done by pilots manually. And on Buran, if the pilots ever flew, it would be like that too.
                1. igorserg
                  igorserg April 18 2018 16: 24
                  0
                  could not. I read an article specifically on this topic - brake parachutes and chassis were produced only in manual mode. And Buran in automatic mode also laid a second turn at the landing.
        2. Cherry Nine
          Cherry Nine 2 March 2018 01: 26
          0
          Quote: karish
          Can I voice what?

          I have to note that post-shuttle programs - Constellation and SLS - conceptually repeat Energy (and Saturn), but not Shuttle.
  6. mavrus
    mavrus 27 February 2018 19: 01
    +5
    Quote: mvg
    And how much money the USSR spent on the useless Buran-Energy in response to the shuttle.

    Well, we would not have spent the money on the "useless Buran-Energy", all the same, they would have been plundered in the dashing 90. Now it’s even scary to remember what was happening then.
    1. da Vinci
      da Vinci 27 February 2018 20: 16
      +2
      LV "Energy" modifications based on it was a breakthrough of the late 20th century. Only now, Musk and others are making similar products, only they go from small to large, and Energy - from 100 tons of heavy tanks to light-duty missiles. smile
      1. Cherry Nine
        Cherry Nine 27 February 2018 21: 45
        +3
        Quote: da Vinci
        was a breakthrough of the late 20th century. Only now Musk and others are making similar products

        That is, 30 years since then (or rather, almost 50 years after the lunar program) there was no need for such a power in the LV.
        And Hawick is not a product like her. Similar will be the SLS.

        This is not a compliment for SLS.
        1. da Vinci
          da Vinci 27 February 2018 22: 56
          +1
          Unfortunately, yes, there was no need, because humanity has decided that a peaceful cosmos is unnecessary for all. But still I think that there would be a flying Energy (in the hangar), Energy-M, Energy II (Hurricane) would actively develop, or maybe something better. And so, the flying promising launch vehicle was abandoned, the topics were closed, from the Angara there was no use, only lards for the new-old launch vehicle would be allocated. With experience, you can expect a repeat of the story with the Hangar. request It can disperse the Roskosmos corporation and create 2-3 new KB with young smart scientists, to whom ROGozin will be paid! But where to get them? recourse
          1. Cannonball
            Cannonball 28 February 2018 20: 51
            +2
            Do not write crap. Comparing Energy with the Hangar is the same as comparing Belaz with the Gazelle - these are completely different "weight" categories.
            1. da Vinci
              da Vinci 28 February 2018 21: 10
              0
              I do not agree. The concept of the development of the Angara to a heavy launch vehicle at Roscosmos was a priority for the last 20 years. Now that the abandonment of the Angara has been officially announced, in real life there is neither a new LV of the middle class, nor even heavier LV. Personally, my IMHO is that having a ready and flying RN Energia machine, it was possible to make an average and light reusable RN in the early 2000s as soon as possible. And if you look at today's realities, you will get a domestic new promising carrier in the next 10-15 years is unrealistic, and no one will wait for us. It's a shame for the Power! request
              1. Cannonball
                Cannonball 28 February 2018 21: 53
                +3
                The concept of the "Angara" is its modularity, which allows you to build light, medium and heavy class launch vehicles. "Energy" refers to the class of superheavy launch vehicles. That is, they initially occupied different niches.
                Secondly, from the "Angara" no one officially refused. It is planned to be assembled in production, as it should.
                Thirdly, the “new medium-class launch vehicles” are the Soyuz-2 launch vehicles.
                Fourth, in the class of heavy launch vehicles the Proton-M is still quite competitive.
                But, alas, the "Energy" is no longer there, and the technology for its creation, unfortunately, has been lost. So nothing can be done “on its basis”.
                If there is real money in production, and not “allegedly allocated” money, if there is normal and not “managerial” management of the industry and enterprises, if there is moral and material interest among engineers, technicians, testers and workers, then in 10 years you can create promising carriers.
                1. da Vinci
                  da Vinci 28 February 2018 23: 41
                  +1
                  I agree with the latter by 200%, but there is a fear that money does not solve everything, there are no personnel and reliable peripherals (i.e. hundreds of productions up to and including the nut, which could ensure both the quality and the optimal cost of the product).
                  * And I about the fact that Energy has been lost forever, and this is a huge loss for astronautics.
                  * "Proton M" competitors are actively pushing from the market, it has already lost a lot.
                  * The Angara was abandoned as a carrier of manned ships. About the ship "Federation" for a long time there was no news.
                  In general, we hope that in outer space in Russia they will turn their faces, not ROGozins! drinks
                  1. yehat
                    yehat 1 March 2018 11: 11
                    +1
                    proton was not originally a commercial platform
                    sooner or later he would be crowded out
                    and as for Energy, you are right that money does not solve everything.
                    it is in the conditions of the USSR and developed science, production and experimental base, it was created for X money and Z time.
                    Now resources will need more.
                    1. Cannonball
                      Cannonball 1 March 2018 21: 48
                      +1
                      The Proton was originally a UNIVERSAL ROCKET - the UR-500, which means it could be used both as a launch vehicle and as an intercontinental ballistic missile.
                      Proton-M was created with an emphasis on commercial use, with which, basically, it coped.
                      Money may not solve everything, but Nothing can be solved without money. Believe my many years of experience.
                    2. Cherry Nine
                      Cherry Nine 2 March 2018 01: 03
                      0
                      Quote: yehat
                      proton was not originally a commercial platform

                      In his years, a "very commercial" heavy missile was hard to imagine. Another thing is that the rockets of his time, like Titan 3 with the same UDMH, have not been flying with the bourgeois for a long time.
                      Quote: yehat
                      Now resources will need more.

                      Not required at all. Given the available personnel, it is difficult to imagine the solution of tasks of a similar scale in Russia.
                  2. Cannonball
                    Cannonball 1 March 2018 21: 43
                    0
                    For space, as well as for war, three things are needed - money, money, and again money.
                    Personnel can be grown if you save the experience that still remains. Need more interest.
                    Do not grieve about the "Energy". If necessary, you can create a more perfect, taking into account the experience of 30 years after its creation.
                    Proton-M will live a little longer. At least its production continues.
                    Anagra as a carrier of manned ships has already been abandoned. But, then, again returned to the "Hangar". Not the fact that the story does not happen again.
                    "Federation", I hope, is being done slowly.
                    Life goes on.
      2. Cannonball
        Cannonball 28 February 2018 20: 48
        0
        Do not write stupidity. Different companies make different rockets. And some do not do anything at all.
    2. Rokossovsky
      Rokossovsky 27 February 2018 22: 53
      +4
      Quote: mavrus

      Well, we would not have spent the money on the "useless Buran-Energy", all the same, they would have been plundered in the dashing 90. Now it’s even scary to remember what was happening then.

      The reality was even worse! Not only were enormous funds spent on the project, but also, after the collapse of the Union, a huge number of technologies obtained and mastered during the creation of the latest developments, and just brains (of people), went to competitors and outright opponents! Thank you for at least sailing ourselves at the expense of the Soviet intellectual reserve! And this applies not only to space ...
      1. yehat
        yehat 28 February 2018 17: 57
        0
        Japan got almost all the information on the development of Burana
        and now she has one of the most advanced systems for putting cargo into orbit.
        1. karish
          karish 28 February 2018 22: 13
          +2
          Quote: yehat
          Japan got almost all the information on the development of Burana
          and now she has one of the most advanced systems for putting cargo into orbit.

          What a twist. belay
  7. Old26
    Old26 28 February 2018 00: 20
    0
    Quote: kit88
    They say that the shuttle is just a fraction of the “Big Project” (1970) that was not implemented by the mattresses.
    It is customary for us to consider that the shuttles were needed in order to bomb Moscow from space and to sweep the Soviet satellites from orbit.
    And the “Big Project” included: the construction of a large orbital station for 50 people, a small orbital station in the orbit of the Moon, the creation of an inhabited base on the Moon, landing on Mars ... Moreover, all orbital flights: supplying the station, delivering goods into orbit for long-distance expeditions blocks of ships for long-distance flights, crew changes, etc. in Earth orbit, should be carried out by the Space Shuttle reusable system.
    . There is such an opinion on the appointment of shuttles

    The "big project" really was. But the Shuttle was chosen, as other projects were much more expensive and unrealizable. There was no need to create a 50-seater station. Even now, dozens of astronauts are taking into account the visiting expeditions, and even less. Do not forget that the Americans then waged a war in Vietnam and they could not realize all this, even if they really wanted to. We chose the Shuttle, and its simplified version, that is, a partially reusable system, and not a fully reusable one. There would be unnecessarily large technical risks
  8. Curious
    Curious 28 February 2018 00: 43
    +3

    For some reason, the author did not say a word about the Spacelab and Spacehab projects - reusable space laboratories that the Space Shuttle could take on as a payload,
    1. Cannonball
      Cannonball 28 February 2018 20: 55
      +1
      And what to write about them? Our "world" modules are two orders of magnitude cooler.
  9. parma
    parma 28 February 2018 07: 55
    +1
    An interesting and worthy program, even for our opponents ... Most of the problems with the shuttle are caused by low flight intensity and unnecessary multifunctionality in real conditions .... Although it should be noted that the shuttle would fly more intensively, many problems could have been avoided, and perhaps he would be a cut above disposable launch vehicles ....
  10. Engineer
    Engineer 28 February 2018 08: 58
    +1
    The author did not mention that such a low cost could be achieved only due to the high frequency of launches - at least 30 per year, which then, with high demand for satellite telecommunication and communication systems, seemed achievable. But the boom fell sharply, as the overall reliability and longevity of the satellites increased and the groupings were already formed in orbit. Also, it is worth mentioning that, for the sake of the United States' ability to serve the ISS with the help of shuttles, it was necessary to significantly reduce the orbit of the ISS, which was unprofitable and costly, since it was constantly necessary to correct the orbit of the burrowing station and raise it. Buran could rise much higher, and the possibilities of maneuvers in space were simply not comparable.
    1. parma
      parma 28 February 2018 09: 25
      +1
      but the difference between the shuttle and the blizzard was twenty years old ... Let's be honest, the shuttle was ahead of its time, not to mention the blizzard (its construction, IMHO in general is stupid, the intensity of launches was precisely known) ... For all the time the USSR and later Russia launched less than 1000 (!) launch vehicles into space, the resource of 5 shuttles of 500 launches ... Low intensity caused all problems .... But flying as much as the Americans wanted (apparently thought it would be like with aviation) was not necessary .. .
      1. yehat
        yehat 28 February 2018 18: 06
        +2
        Buran pursued primarily not economic, but defense goals, because the presence of the shuttle radically enhanced the ability of the United States to work in orbit, including turning the shuttles into unkillable bombers. And it was the military who convinced the country's leadership to build a Buran.
        Although I personally consider this to be one of the most failed decisions of the USSR leadership, along with an unsuccessful chain of decisions on Afghanistan, the resources spent on the project were very necessary in the economy to complete the transition to an extensive development path. The USSR could quite easily occupy the niche of China and become a leading producer in key industries by world standards, while simultaneously expanding the technological gap from the USA and Europe, which already existed in 83-85, and replenishing the infrastructure within the country, which was too economized.
        1. Cannonball
          Cannonball 28 February 2018 21: 28
          +1
          It was a failure that these programs were not completed. Therefore, with such a "leadership" of the laurels of today's China, we could not achieve.
          1. yehat
            yehat 28 February 2018 23: 39
            +3
            The decision to implement the buran was made without realizing the ultimate goals.
            an irrational decision that significantly overloaded the country's economy.
            hard to call it right.
            1. Cannonball
              Cannonball 1 March 2018 21: 50
              +1
              Buran was not cheap, but to say that it overloaded the economy was nonsense.
              1. yehat
                yehat 2 March 2018 11: 18
                0
                not nonsense.
                some statistics - more than 300 enterprises were involved in the project.
                about a quarter of the country's scientific capacity over several years
                so you understand the amount of expenses
                1. Cannonball
                  Cannonball 2 March 2018 20: 23
                  0
                  Almost 1300 enterprises created Buran.
                  The Energy-Buran program cost the budget, according to various sources, approximately 14,5-16,5 billion rubles. This is for 18 years from 1976 to 1993, i.e. 0,806-0,917 billion rubles a year.

                  For statistics:
                  The military budget of the USSR
                  1980 - 48,9 billion rubles
                  1985 - 63,4 billion rubles
                  1988 - 76,9 billion rubles
                  1989 - 77,3 billion rubles
                  1990 - 71,2 billion rubles.

                  What will we say for longer about the "critical ruin" of the Energy-Buran project for the USSR economy?
                  1. yehat
                    yehat 4 March 2018 15: 12
                    +1
                    Yes, we will argue, because it’s obvious that you didn’t count everything in the program.
                    you probably didn’t count related developments - for example, from the chemistry section.
                    to say nothing, it only took several years to develop a crane for Buran at TsNII RTK, a unique huge stand was specially built for it (the Americans made the same garbage on ice and called the Russians crazy, which automatically emulated space conditions)
                    finally, Buran was not included in the initial plans and the costs were taken from him by cutting other important projects.
                    you just underestimate the severity
                    1. Cannonball
                      Cannonball 4 March 2018 16: 14
                      +1
                      I name the completely official final figures, which can be found even on the Internet. I will say more, they cover not only the creation of the “Buran”, but also the creation of the “Energy” with all their infrastructure.
                      But even this does not compare with defense spending. The difference in numbers by orders of magnitude.
                      By the way, a unique stand was also built at our company for the Pole, which was displayed by Energy. Still worth it.
                      I am aware of the volumes of the "severity" of work in space and related industries, as I have a direct relationship to these works and I know what I'm talking about.
            2. nickname7
              nickname7 2 March 2018 14: 56
              0
              The decision to implement the buran was made without realizing the ultimate goals.
              an irrational decision that significantly overloaded the country's economy
              Golden words But it seems that this rake will have to be stepped on again, Rogozin wants to build rockets, like Musk’s, with dancing reusable steps and twice as expensive to take out the load.
      2. Cannonball
        Cannonball 28 February 2018 21: 22
        +3
        The first flight of Colombia took place on April 12, 1981, the flight of Buran took place on November 15, 1988. Seven and a half years.
        Where is the "two decades"? am
        Where is the shuttle ahead of time? He appeared in due time.
        As of December 31, 1980, that is, prior to the start of shuttle flights, 1315 successful LV launches were carried out in the USSR.
        In total, 2282 successful LV launches were carried out in the USSR.
        Plus 728 successful launches made in Russia.
        Total - "not less than 1000", and 3010 successful launches.
        1. Cherry Nine
          Cherry Nine 2 March 2018 01: 21
          0
          Quote: Cannonball
          Where is the shuttle ahead of time? He appeared at one time

          Not quite. He was too much for his time. As a matter of fact, the Americans left him for conventional EELV missiles, which turned out to be enough for most tasks.
          1. Cannonball
            Cannonball 2 March 2018 20: 25
            0
            In addition to manned flights
            1. Cherry Nine
              Cherry Nine 4 March 2018 02: 41
              +1
              Quote: Cannonball
              In addition to manned flights

              No.
              Orion launched on the Delta, Starliner and Dream Chaser will fly on the Atlas. EELV is more powerful and reliable than the Union, which is still enough for manned space exploration.

              The problems of Americans with manned space exploration are exclusively of a politically bureaucratic nature. Specifically, with carriers they are not associated.
              1. Cannonball
                Cannonball 4 March 2018 10: 59
                +1
                Even Orion flew in an unmanned version. The rest are not yet flying.
                Of the manned ships flying in the US arsenal, only Mercury, Gemini, Apollo and Shuttle. Dot.
                Again, you are comparing pH of a different class. Atlases and Deltas are medium-heavy and heavy-class launch vehicles. The Union is a classic middle class.
                The problems of Americans are not only politically bureaucratic, but also technical and technological, including those depending on the media. The fact is that the overloads that appear when the ship is put into orbit can be prohibitively large for the ship and crew, which will put an end to the manned career of such a carrier. So, when the spacecraft is withdrawn on Soyuz, overloads can reach 4g, on the Shuttle - up to 3g.
                1. Cherry Nine
                  Cherry Nine 4 March 2018 18: 38
                  +1
                  Quote: Cannonball
                  Even Orion flew in an unmanned version. The rest are not yet flying.

                  It's true.
                  Quote: Cannonball
                  Of the manned ships flying in the US arsenal, only Mercury, Gemini, Apollo and Shuttle. Dot.

                  That is, they know how to make manned ships. But do not.
                  Quote: Cannonball
                  The fact is that the overloads that appear when the ship is put into orbit can be prohibitively large for the ship and crew, which will put an end to the manned career of such a carrier

                  Again. Starliner will fly on EELV. Krudragon - on Falcon. The loads on the carriers with the LRE are quite moderate, and most importantly - adjustable.

                  There is no problem with the creation of a manned ship. There are political, bureaucratic and personnel problems. NASA allow not make responsible decisions when buying tickets for Unions.
                  1. Cannonball
                    Cannonball 4 March 2018 19: 10
                    +1
                    Let's wait for the real flights of these ships
                    1. Cherry Nine
                      Cherry Nine 4 March 2018 19: 11
                      +1
                      Quote: Cannonball
                      Let's wait

                      OK
                      1. Pingo
                        Pingo 5 March 2018 02: 15
                        +1
                        EELV is Delta IV and Atlas 5. the first is unsuitable for launching people, the second with the Russian RD-180. Falcon-9 is suitable with a crew loss probability of 0,25
                        therefore, Roscosmos allows NASA to buy tickets at the Unions.
                      2. Cherry Nine
                        Cherry Nine 6 March 2018 23: 56
                        +1
                        Quote: Pingo
                        EELV is Delta IV and Atlas 5

                        Yes
                        Quote: Pingo
                        the first is unsuitable for running people

                        Not certified to run people.
                        Quote: Pingo
                        the second with the Russian RD-180

                        And how does this prevent people from starting up?
                        Quote: Pingo
                        Falcon-9 is suitable with a crew loss probability of 0,25

                        Accident-free Falcon series - 21 (from Amos, an accident during refueling, the crew would not have been injured in such an accident) or 31 (from SpaceX CRS-7, an accident in flight, here the death of the crew is possible) launches. Soyuz-FG has 62 accident-free launches, however, if we consider all the Soyuz missiles, the loss of Progress due to the fault of the launch vehicle occurred on 28.04.2015/37/XNUMX, XNUMX launches ago.
                      3. Pingo
                        Pingo 7 March 2018 01: 50
                        +1
                        And will not be. Atlas 5 - possible. The loss of Progress occurred due to a new overclocking unit which is not used in alliance launches.
                      4. Cherry Nine
                        Cherry Nine 7 March 2018 02: 28
                        0
                        Quote: Pingo
                        And will not be.

                        Of course. If there are 2-3 others.
                        Quote: Pingo
                        Atlas 5 - possible

                        Starliner has nothing to fly on.
                        Quote: Pingo
                        Loss of Progress due to new overclocking block

                        The loss of Progress M-27M occurred due to depressurization of tanks of the 3rd stage, which is identical on the FG Unions.

                        Your twittering style reminds me of something.
                        https://topwar.ru/user/DalaiLama/#
                      5. Pingo
                        Pingo 7 March 2018 03: 25
                        +1
                        Certainly because it’s not good. What could be the reason for this with Starliner?
                        Who said that the crew would not have suffered from such an accident at the start?
                        How could two consecutive depressurization of oxidizer and fuel tanks occur but no explosion occurred?
                        Acceleration block to display the progress of another.
                        Twitter style of communication is what?
                      6. Cherry Nine
                        Cherry Nine 7 March 2018 10: 22
                        0
                        Quote: Pingo
                        Twitter style of communication is what?

                        Your remarks are empty, they take my time.

                        Finish the conversation.
                      7. Pingo
                        Pingo 7 March 2018 12: 21
                        0
                        Finish together with the Town Hall to carry your pro-Western nonsense (you do it badly). See also about your idol Old26.
                        What exploded at the start of the Falcon-9 is not exactly known. This could happen with a fueled rocket when the crew was already sitting in the cockpit.
  11. Old26
    Old26 28 February 2018 10: 50
    +4
    Quote: Engineer
    The author did not mention that such a low cost could be achieved only due to the high frequency of launches - at least 30 per year,

    Initially, it was planned that a group of 4 ships would make 52 flights a year, that is, every week. Then yes, the cost is low. Moreover, if you agreed for several reasons to withdraw your workload later than planned, then you also relied on discounts. But these were only plans. In reality, interflight service turned out to be more expensive both in time and financially

    Quote: parma
    but the difference between the shuttle and the blizzard was twenty years old ... Let's be honest, the shuttle was ahead of its time, not to mention the blizzard (its construction, IMHO in general is stupid, the intensity of launches was precisely known) ... For all the time the USSR and later Russia launched less than 1000 (!) launch vehicles into space, the resource of 5 shuttles of 500 launches ... Low intensity caused all problems .... But flying as much as the Americans wanted (apparently thought it would be like with aviation) was not necessary .. .


    I would like to know where you have gained such knowledge?

    FIRST, The difference between the “shuttle” and the “Buran” is not in 2 decades, as you write, but in 7 years 10 months and 3 days. . The American shuttle first went into space on April 12, 1981 (on the day of the 20th anniversary of Gagarin’s flight). Our Buran took off on November 15, 1988. And where is 20 years here ????

    SECOND. It concerns your claim that
    For all the time of the USSR and later Russia launched less than 1000 (!) LV into space


    Write yourself somewhere in the commemoration and do not write more such nonsense. In the USSR / Russia was launched
    1. R-7 family missiles on 13.02.2018/XNUMX/XNUMX - 1880 units (THOUSAND EIGHTY EIGHTY)
    2. Rockets of the Cosmos-1/3 family based on the R-14 rocket - 445 units (FOURTY FORTY FIVE)
    3. Rockets of the Cosmos-2 family based on the R-12 rocket - 165 units (HUNDRED AND SIXTY-FIVE)
    4. Rockets of the Cyclone family - 259 units (TWENTY FIFTY NINE)
    5. Rockets of the Proton family - 416 units (FOUR SIXTEEN)
    6. Rockets of the Zenith family - 84 units (EIGHTY FOUR)
    7. Missiles of the family "Arrow" - "Rumble" - 33 units (THIRTY THREE)
    8. Rockets of the Wave / Height family - 8 units (EIGHT)
    9. Missiles of the Dnepr family - 22 units (TWENTY TWO)
    10. Rocket family "Energy" - 2 units (TWO)
    11. Rockets of the Angara family - 2 units (TWENTY FIFTY NINE)

    Total 3316 launches. You can also add here 4 unsuccessful starts of the N-1 carrier. But agree that the figure THREE THOUSAND THREE SIXTEEN slightly different from your numbers less 1000
    1. Cannonball
      Cannonball 28 February 2018 21: 26
      +1
      The difference between the Shuttle and the Buran is not 7 years old, 10 months and 3 days, and 7 years, 7 months and 3 days. wink
  12. Old26
    Old26 28 February 2018 22: 07
    +1
    Quote: Cannonball
    The difference between the Shuttle and the Buran is not 7 years old, 10 months and 3 days, and 7 years, 7 months and 3 days. wink

    Yes of course. I caught a wedge. 11 month minus 4 month ....
  13. DimerVladimer
    DimerVladimer 2 March 2018 11: 12
    +2
    as well as a large suspended fuel compartment, which formed the second stage.

    So writing is wrong.
    SpSh is a single-stage rocket with an outboard fuel tank and two solid fuel boosters. SpSh engines operate from the moment of launch - therefore, it is incorrect to write about any “second” steps.
  14. DimerVladimer
    DimerVladimer 2 March 2018 12: 15
    +4
    The space shuttle was created as a space bomber in the interests of the military (for this he was given ample opportunity to maneuver horizontally).
    Since the program was going to be expensive, there was some possibility of universal activity - removal and removal of goods from orbit, space expeditions, which would at least somehow justify the creation of such expensive and ineffective spacecraft.
    Initially, it could not be effective in carrying capacity, since aerodynamic surfaces, chassis, and volumetric cab are useless ballast in orbit with a total dry mass of 68 tons! The axiom of rocket science is minimal useless weight.
    And here, with a dry mass of 68 tons, it puts only 24,4 tons into orbit - this will not pull any budget. Extremely inefficient system.
    In addition, the cost of restoring engines after a flight turned out to be very high.
    As the author correctly pointed out, restoration of a heat-shielding coating is a very laborious and expensive operation for a space plan with a huge surface area.

    Tales of cheap orbital withdrawals are for Congress to break funding, and then it will be too late to cancel.
    As an engineer involved in this industry in the past, I can say with confidence that the designers knew in advance that the cost of launching would not be comparable high compared to disposable ships.

    The hopes that reusable solid propellant boosters and shuttle return engines would reduce the cost of launch were not realized.
    1. nickname7
      nickname7 2 March 2018 15: 05
      +1
      this is useless ballast in orbit with a total dry mass of 68 tons!
      Maybe it’s up to some kind of humanities and those sitting in the “tank”, it comes to that on chemical missiles, many times and recurrence lead to a rise in price.
  15. Forever so
    Forever so 2 March 2018 13: 33
    0
    As for the dead, it’s also strange, recently published a photo of ALL DIED aged, but cheerful.
    Another hoax: Astronauts of the Shuttle Challenger that exploded in 1986 are still alive
    1. Vadim237
      Vadim237 5 March 2018 01: 33
      +2
      Tell their loved ones.