Landing all aircraft is the most difficult phase of the flight. At this stage, there is a frequent change of engine operating modes, changes in altitude, speed, and at the final stage the aircraft must be displayed on a limited portion of the surface of the landing strip (the runway - runway). Aircraft speeds during landing are within 200 km / h. In aviation, there is a farewell to pilots, which amply determines flight safety: “the number of take-offs should be equal to the number of safe landings”. Since the 1940-ies in the aircraft began to use radio beacon navigation and landing systems. In our country, these systems appeared at the beginning of the 1950s (developed by SRI-33). This is a radio beacon near navigation system (RSBN) and radio beacon landing system (SP-50). In terms of their characteristics, domestic systems were superior to Western ones, but they were not identical in radio signal structure. The latter was tied up by the military leadership of the country with the need to ensure increased defense capability and the impossibility in the event of an enemy seizing our airfields using its equipment to control its aircraft. Experts could not convince the military leadership in the absurdity of these arguments. And only 30 years later, when I headed the state structures for the development of radio aviation equipment, I managed to defend a different point of view regarding the microwave system of instrumental landing of aircraft.
In 1963, the International Aviation Organization (ICAO) standardized three categories of instrumental landing systems:
- Category I - ensuring a successful approach to the lower limit of the height of 60 m with a runway visibility range of at least 800 m;
- Category II - ensuring a successful approach to the lower limit of the height of 30 m with a runway visibility range of at least 400 m;
- Category III - ensuring a successful approach, a successful landing, including landing, movement on runways and taxiways without limiting the height and lack of visibility.
Due to the complexity of the implementation of the system of the third category, the documents established the categories IIIA, IIIB and IIIC. Systems of these categories provide for the implementation of an approach without a height restriction when the runway visibility range is at least 200 m, 50 m, respectively, and in the absence of visibility. The first foreign and domestic landing systems worked in the meter wave band (course channel) and the decimeter wave band (glide path). These were domestic systems: “SP-50”, “SP-50М”, “SP-68”, “SP-70”, “SP-75”, “SP-80”, “SP-90” and “SP -200 ”, onboard equipment“ Kurs-MP (2, 70) ”,“ Axis-1 ”and“ VIM-95 ”. Over the entire period of creation and implementation of these systems, only Moscow's airports (Sheremetyevo and Domodedovo) and St. Petersburg (Pulkovo) were installed and certified landing systems of category III of this range from 116 international and national airports of the Russian Federation equipped these systems. For these systems, only domestic aircraft (IL-18, IL-62, etc.) provided landing in accordance with the requirements of category III.
The problem solved by the landing system, formulated as follows. When performing this flight stage, the aircraft with the permissible probability of the system signals must be entered into a certain region of space, the position and dimensions of which depend on the weather minimum. This area is also determined by the size, where the aircraft, according to its characteristics, and with the flight speed within the established limits, has the 100 percentage chance to perform a corrective maneuver to touch the runway at a given point. The boundaries of this area are determined by the permissible lateral deviations in the horizontal plane and the deviations in height from the specified landing trajectory, which depend on the distance from the runway end. When approaching the end of the runway and reducing the flight altitude, the size of the tolerance area decreases and therefore the accuracy of the landing systems should increase. Starting from a certain height, the flight of the aircraft to the second circle is impossible and therefore in systems of the third category, the probability 10-7 of its falling into the area of permissible deviations from the descent path is ensured.
For the state aviation in 1962, the research institute-33 created a landing system operating in the decimeter wave band (landing beacon group - “PRMG-4 ...”; “76У”). On-board equipment systems were developed for all types of aircraft (Iskra-K, Rhomb-1K, Radical, A-340, A-380, etc.). The ground systems of the system were transferred and serially mastered at the Chelyabinsk PO Polet, and the onboard equipment at the Kazan Radiopribor and Zhigulevsk Plant. Antenna-feeder systems mastered "Almetyevsk plant". At present, these enterprises have an index of OJSC and are part of the state corporation Russian Technologies.
Starting from the 1964 year, after the onboard equipment was created in the Scientific Research Institute-33, it is possible to issue constant digital information about the aircraft position relative to the set landing course and glide path to the flight-navigation complexes and aircraft control systems, to the Air Force Research Institute and the Flight Research Institute . M.M. Gromov began testing automated landing systems. The IL-18, An-12, MiG-21, MiG-25 flying laboratories ensured that the results were tested and allowed to equip all aircraft of state aviation with an automated approach system from 1975. Civil aviation aircraft were also equipped with this system, the work was carried out under the supervision of the chief designers. This system made it possible at all aerodromes of state aviation to implement a landing system that meets the requirements of categories I-II.
At the end of 70-s, SRI-33 began to create a new automated landing system using the centimeter wave band. This system has received the name - microwave landing system (SME). Together with experts from the USA and France, scientists from the Scientific Research Institute-33 proposed a signal structure, which the ICAO session for all airports in the world adopted at its meeting. The main advantages of SMEs were:
- increase flight safety due to accurate guidance of the aircraft in the landing zone;
- increasing the capacity of airports and airfields due to the implementation of separation of the approach paths of different types of aircraft;
- fuel economy while optimizing landing paths and reducing longitudinal separation rates;
- increasing the regularity of flights in adverse weather conditions;
- reducing the volume of construction and installation work during the installation of beacons.
By this time, the government of our country allowed a number of research institutes to establish business contacts with foreign high-tech enterprises. Meetings began with representatives of US enterprises on the possibility of creating joint radio navigation systems with ground reference stations. With the French company Thomson CSF, SRI-33 has begun to prepare an agreement on the creation of on-board equipment for working with the SME system. Mathematical modeling of the characteristics of this system as applied to domestic aerodromes of state aviation and airports for civil aviation allowed us to believe that it would provide work in the requirements regimes of ICAO IIIB and IIIC. Having received instructions from the management, through the embassy and the trade mission in Paris, we agreed on a discussion program with Thomson CSF. To discuss the procedure for creating onboard equipment for SMEs, I and General Designer G. A. Pakholkov were instructed to carry out this work. At Thomson-CSF, the president received us, after we met and presented souvenirs in the presence of our country's trade representative, the order of all the work was clarified. As a result, the French side undertook to develop a microminiature on-board receiver. After completing the work and signing protocols of intent, we had to report the results to the embassy. However, the French and I were offered to visit the variety show in the evening to me and G. A. Pakholkov. We drove to the embassy by car of the trade mission, where we discussed the results of our negotiations with the second secretary. We received approval and also agreed to be in the evening in a variety show. At the same time smiling mysteriously, the second secretary warned that he would also be at this performance, asked us to be careful and exclude acquaintances with women. Of course, we did not understand anything, but promised to be attentive.
The assistant to the president of the company, having met us at the exit from the embassy, offered to go to one of the shops to change clothes for the evening performance. Here I and Georgy Alexandrovich didn’t understand anything at all, but, having looked at each other, expressed agreement. Late in the evening, together with the assistant to the president of the company, we arrived at the Champs Elysees at the Lido variety show building. Everything was unusual for us: the furnishings, ladies' toilets, and communication manners. Thank God, we didn’t stand out against the general background, it’s not for nothing that we were dressed in the firm. There was still plenty of time before the show began. The audience, sitting quietly at their tables, talked, the men smoked cigars. Everyone drank champagne. I noticed that not far from us at the table was the second secretary of the embassy. Around midnight, the stage rose, the music began to play. We have already been warned that before the beginning of the performance in the variety, the audience is having fun and dancing. But we did not expect to see such luxury. Like everyone else, we drank champagne and talked quietly. Looking at the dancers, I involuntarily remembered the dance lessons in the school: we, the young cadets, were taught this skill by the teachers. All cadets enjoyed dancing, so naval officers know how to dance perfectly. After two or three dances, a charming brunette in an evening dark deeply decorated dress came up to our table, beckoned me with her finger, nodded her head a little and winked with her left eye. I just had to bow to the brunette, take her arm and lead her to the dancers. The orchestra played a waltz, but I could not remember where I had heard this melody before. As I was once taught, I hugged the girl with my right hand over my shoulder, and bent my left behind me. The girl put her right hand on my shoulder, lowered her left and took the edge of her dress with her fingers. We slowly spun in a waltz, changing the direction of turns in a few steps. I noticed that only we danced in such a manner. To my surprise, the partner exactly repeated my movements in the dance and constantly smiled. So we danced for two minutes while the music sounded. After the waltz, the microphone was picked up by Mireille Mathieu, the melody “Parisian tango” sounded. Mathieu sang. I suggested that the girl be escorted to her table, but she shook her head negatively. She took my hand in her, while making a slightly noticeable curtsy, expressing a desire to dance more. I just have to bow to her. I hugged her with my right hand, took the first two steps, then turned and held the girl on my arm. My partner exactly performed all the steps and turns offered by me, apparently, the dance gave her pleasure. She constantly smiled and looked into my eyes, as if trying to hypnotize me. I also smiled at my partner and began to whisper in English in a whisper: “one, two, three, four, stop, turn”. My partner also in English asked me my name. I answered, and then asked the name of my partner, her name was Sabrina. Mireille Mathieu finished singing. I again offered to Sabrina to take her to the table, the warning of the second secretary of the embassy was extremely disturbing to me. But Sabrina took my arm and quietly said that she really enjoyed being with me and she wanted to dance more. Seeing the ring on my finger, Sabrina wondered if I was married. I replied that I was married. Then Sabrina quietly said that it did not matter to her. Now I understood how the embassy employee was right. storiesI did not know yet. Sabrina wondered if I knew the translation of "Paris Tango." I shook my head and replied that I only knew the tune. Then she brought her lips to my cheek and quietly began to whisper: “I give you my heart while dancing, we dance happily, and I wish it will last a lifetime. Our life will be wonderful, as today, when we dance in a small cafe. Be with me forever ... ”I looked at Sabrina, she was all shining, it seemed that not only her lips were smiling, which were bright red from lipstick and were very harmonious with the color of the dress and hair, her whole face was smiling. The perfumes of Sabrina exuded a fragrance from which the head of any man could go round. I had a desire to touch her lips and push them apart with a kiss. “Lord, what I dream about,” flashed through my mind. “Here's the trouble. Surely an employee of the embassy is looking at me. Need to do something". The melody of a slow waltz sounded, and again Sabrina, with a smile on her face, freely and smoothly performed all the turns, elongated sliding steps, and stops. Now it was my turn to translate the words of this waltz, which Mathieu inimitably performed. “Everything that at this hour we have come up with will come true. The night and the sea surf were for ever married to you ... "This waltz-Boston," I continued to whisper to Sabrina, "in my youth, when I was still a cadet, we called farewell." Sabrina looked into my eyes and asked: “Are you American?” I shook my head. “Really a Serb?” I did not have time to answer, the waltz-boston ended. The light slowly began to fade. I took Sabrina by the arm and led her to the table she pointed out to me. At the table where we went, there was a lady, a gentleman, and a very young girl. They all smiled warmly and looked at us. I made a bow with my head, pushed back a chair, kissed the hand of my partner, helped her to sit down, once again made a bow with his head and went to his companions. Suddenly I remembered how I knew the melody of the first waltz. Undoubtedly, this is “Lily Marlene” arranged in a waltz. In 1953, as a boy, after graduating from 7 class, I entered a military school, where music was always playing in the canteen during lunch. We, the cadets, especially liked this melody. Front-line officers - our teachers and company commanders - told us the story of this song. And now, many years later, in Paris, I heard her again ...
The performance began, I asked the company presidential assistant accompanying us: “Does Mireille Mathieu often sing here?” “It seems to be the first time. I think our boss was pleased to give you such a gift. Do not forget, his brother is the president of France. Perhaps in the hall there are members of the governments of other countries. And tomorrow at the embassy, Yuri, you will find out with whom you danced so beautifully. ”
After the presentation, we went to the Champs Elysees. It was five o'clock in the morning. While we were waiting for the car of our attendant, a representative limousine stopped. I noticed that my partner went to him with his father, mother and sister. Suddenly the man stopped, turned his head in our direction, left his family and approached us. Approaching, he introduced himself: "Bernard." An accompanying assistant to the president of the company introduced us. Bernard smiled, hugged me and George Alexandrovich, then noticed that Sabrina’s grandmother lived once in Petrograd, but in 1922, she emigrated with her father. “You, it turns out, countrymen. Now I see, Yuri, why my daughter liked you so much. ” Then he called Sabrina to us and briefly told his daughter about our conversation. I saw how her expression changed when Bernard told Sabrina about who we were. We began to say goodbye, suddenly Sabrina hugged me, kissed me on the cheek and whispered: "I will never forget now, I will find you anyway."
Already in the afternoon at the embassy, the second secretary told me who I was dancing with at the Lido. “There are no complaints about the regime to you, everything was within acceptable limits,” he added.
In 1988, state tests of SMEs under the direction of Chief Designer MD. Maksimenko. The system has been assigned the code "Bridgehead". A year later, the country's government approved the “Comprehensive plan for equipping 448 with airdromes and airports” with the “Bridgehead” system. In accordance with this plan, it was assumed only for the period 1992 — 2000. install 97 systems for SMEs, including 15 systems, at the airports and airports of the country. But our country fell apart. We were unable to equip domestic airfields with the SME system, unlike in foreign countries. In the UK alone, the system is installed in more than 20 airports, and the US Department of Defense uses this system on more than 40 airfields, including in Iraq and Afghanistan.
This system in our country has become the basis for the radio engineering equipment of the main and two alternate aerodromes for landing the reusable Buran spacecraft of the national universal rocket transport system Energia-Buran. The landing system provided:
- correction of the onboard computing control system for accurate output of the orbital ship to the axis of the runway, the formation of an optimal descent path from the height 6200 m to the landing and a full stop on the runway;
- the required accuracy of the navigation parameters setting, providing the deviation from the axis of the landing strip when touching no more than 3 m. And stopping with a deviation of no more than 80, see.
The automatic landing of the Buran orbital vehicle in accordance with the specified tactical and technical requirements was successfully completed in full with a high degree of reliability, without failures and failures.
SMEs also became the basis for the creation of the domestic "Ship-aviation radio engineering system for flight, navigation, and landing approach for ship-based aircraft". The system was put into service and is currently landing aircraft on the Kuznetsov aircraft carrier aircraft, the aircraft carrier Vikramaditya, and is being installed under a contract by our specialists on the Indian aircraft carrier Vikrant. The introduction of two patents into this system in 2012, whose authors are the chief designers S. P. Fedotov and V. I. Baburov, allowed:
- to increase the accuracy of determining the height of the flight relative to the deck of the aircraft carrier during the landing approach of aircraft on a short glide path;
- improve the accuracy of helicopter approaches to the intermediate point of the route when the “freeze” maneuver is performed (to accomplish the combat mission);
- providing a hidden maneuver to return at low altitudes of aircraft to the aircraft carrier for landing.
These features increase the competitiveness of domestic systems. Domestic aircraft carriers are waiting for their turn to build with the installation of the system created by NIIIT-RK and NII-33.
The development of the satellite navigation system GLONASS made it possible to propose its use for the creation of an aircraft landing system. The main leaders of the work of Yu. I. Zavalishin, V. I. Baburov, and O. I. Saut created and tested this system. She met the requirements of ICAO Category I. The system operation in differential mode with the transfer to the aircraft of the necessary amendments and the coordinates of the touch point on the runway involves its wide development and implementation.
PS Then my job was that with Bernard, an influential figure in one of the famous countries, we met at an arms exhibition in South Africa. He spoke about the life of Sabrina, with whom we later met several times. One of the meetings was in Leningrad, when I showed Sabrina a place on the Lieutenant Schmidt Embankment, from where in September 1922, her grandmother and her parents on the steamer Ober-burgomaster Haken emigrated from Soviet Russia. We stood for a long time at the stele, to which she laid a luxurious bouquet of red roses. He aroused interest among those passing, but no one asked us any questions. Sabrina was silent, thinking about something, firmly holding my hand. On the official car, we stopped at the hotel. Sabrina took her purse, and I took her to Pulkovo airport. She flew home to her family through Helsinki, and I returned home to Moscow on a late flight.