Military Review

Summer review of space affairs

A year ago, I wrote a review post about what is happening in the global and domestic space program, and what are the achievements of various countries in this area ( It so happened by chance that the next morning the Proton epically fell live with three GLONASS satellites, so that post was widely sold out. Now, a year later, I thought - why not write a new review with a story about the affairs of space for the second half of 2013 - the first half of 2014. Such reviews are usually written for the New Year, the more interesting will be the view from July.


The post is structurally divided into the same as in the previous time section - manned cosmonautics, applied unmanned cosmonautics, scientific unmanned cosmonautics, launch vehicles.

Piloted astronautics

Summer review of space affairs

2014 year, for sure, will become the year in which manned ships will be launched only by Russia. The fact is that China, which usually launched one “Shenzhou” in 2012 and 2013, does not plan piloted flights this year, and ships from other countries are still being tested.

Russia: Soyuz TMA-M fly, in parallel, new equipment is being tested. For example, the new “Kurs-NA” docking system, which will be installed on the Soyuz TMA-MS, is now running around on the “Progress”. At the same time, a new PPTS ship, aka PTK NP, is being developed, the first launch is expected in 2017-2018. The model of the ship was shown on MAX-2013. Separate units are being developed and tested - windows, a control knob, etc. If you are interested news development of this ship, I recommend to follow the topic on the forum "News of Cosmonautics" and the blog of test-cosmonaut Mark Serov, who participates in the development.

USA: Actively working on the development of several ships. The development of the Dragon cargo ship - manned by DragonRider was renamed Dragon V2, and its layout was shown on 29 in May on 2014 of the year. In terms of the depth of development, the layout was conceded by the PTK NP - there was nothing except stylish racing seats and a large dashboard with touch screens, and the layout sparkled with bare walls of the cockpit. The mini-shuttle DreamChaser has started throwing tests - the prototype was dropped from the 26 helicopter in October 2013 of the year. Unfortunately, the tests ended in an accident, the landing gear did not come out, and the prototype was damaged. The ship CST-100 tested the parachute system in 2012 year, and in August 2013 conducted tests of cabin ergonomics and communications. The Orion spacecraft is being actively developed, repeated tests of the parachute system, the rescue system have been conducted, a test unmanned suborbital flight is expected in December 2014.

Europe: In 2012, ESA decided to join the Orion program, the ACTS / CSTS project is closed.

China: The Shenzhou ship is operated, the next flight, the Shenzhou-11, is expected in 2015-2016. The uncertainty is due to the fact that this flight is planned to be carried out to a new modular Chinese orbital station, which has not yet been launched.

India: In February, 2014 suddenly found out that the ISRO OV project received funding and a fairly high priority. In March, tests of the parachute system were conducted, and the first unmanned suborbital test flight is expected, no less, in the second half of 2014, I recommend to follow the news.

Japan: No news on the development of any manned spacecraft.

Orbital stations

The operation of the ISS continues. Due to some cooling of relations between Russia and the United States, clouds began to thicken over the future of the station - it is not known whether its operation will continue after the 2020 year. Russia is the only country that planned to expand the ISS with new modules, and the "Science" module was supposed to go on the flight in the spring of 2013. But the module had technical problems on tests, and its start was postponed. Initially, the dates were called in 2014, but in the fall the 2013 module was returned for revision, and it can fly even in 2016-18. Given the political problems of international cooperation and the aging of the ISS, there is some probability that the block will become the basis for a new Russian or Russian-Chinese orbital station - Nauka was developed on the basis of the FGB, which became the first block of the ISS.

China plans to move from a single-module Tyangun-1 station to a multi-modular Mira or ISS station. Specific dates are not yet known, the launch of the first module is approximately 2015-2016 year.

Bigelow does not cancel its plans to launch a private orbital station, and, according to news, acquired launch services for one launch of the Falcon 9 rocket, but the payload of this launch is still unknown.

Supply Cargo Ships

Russia: Progresses continue, payload 2,3 t, launch 4 per year.

USA: Dragon - 3,3 t into orbit, 2,5 - back, in 2013, one launch, in 2014, they want to perform 4 launch, but they are unlikely to have more than two - the timing of the launches gradually go right, the second launch in 2014, should have be in june. The ship Cygnus made the first flight to the ISS in 2013, can deliver 2 tons of cargo.

Europe: ATV program ends, the ship "George Lemaitre" will be the last ship of the series. Launch 26 July 2014 of the year. 7,6 payload tons. After the project is closed, the mastered technologies will work in the service module of the Orion spacecraft.

Japan: HTV - 6 T into Orbit, one launch per year. The fifth ship of the series will fly in 2014, the launch date has not yet been announced. At least three more ships of the series are expected.

Applied unmanned space program

Applied unmanned spacecraft is, in fact, the bread of astronautics. The commercial benefits of communications, meteorology, the government benefits of navigation, government communications, missile attack warning systems all mean that most of the launched vehicles will fall into this category.

Satellite navigation systems

Global navigation systems still have only two countries - Russia and the United States. Several countries also have or are developing regional navigation systems.

Russia: GLONASS system is in operation, 24 satellite is in operation, 1 is under test (GLONASS-K on a new unpressurized platform), 2 is under study, 2 is in reserve, 1 is on the system input stage, total 30 satellites. The system is deployed steadily and with a margin, last year’s loss of 3-s satellites during a PH accident did not affect the availability of the signal. The last satellite was put into orbit in June 2014.

USA: GPS, 31 satellite in orbit, last launch in May 2014.

Europe: Galileo, in satellite 4, last launch in 2012, the system is in the testing phase.

China: Beidou system, deployed as regional in 2012, 14 satellites in orbit. It is planned to develop into a global system by the year 2020.

India: The IRNSS system is actively developing, over the past year two satellites have already been launched, in the year 2014 it is planned to launch two more. It is planned to launch seven satellites for full system deployment.

Japan: The QZSS system, which the plans were supposed to put into operation in 2013, is still indicated as inactive. In orbit three satellites, in 2013, it was announced that another satellite would be launched.


Over the past year, Russia launched the following application satellites:

September 12, 2013 - 3 "Gontsa-M" - Low-orbit communication
12 November 2013 - "Rainbow-1М" - Geostationary Military Connection
25 December 2013 - "Cosmos-2488" / "Strela-3M" - Low-orbit military communications
26 December 2013 - Express-AM5 - Geostationary Telecommunications
March 16, 2014 - 2 "Express-AT" - Geostationary commercial telecommunication
March 24, 2014 - "Cosmos-2491" / "GLONASS-M" - Navigational
28 April 2014 - "Ray-5В" - Geostationary Communications
6 May 2014 - Cosmos-2495 / Cobalt-M - Low-Orbit Species Intelligence
23 May 2014 - 3 "Arrows-3М" - Low-orbit military communications
14 June 2014 - Cosmos-2500 / GLONASS-M - Navigation
3 July 2014 - 3 "Gonza-M" - Low-orbit Coherent

8 July is expected to launch meteorological "Meteor-M №2", it is also worth noting the expected launch of "Electro-L №2" at the end of the year.

Of the losses of satellites of this year, the most noticeable is “Electro-L No. XXUMX”, which has problems with the orientation system. Despite the dramatic history With a flashing of the device in orbit and its return to 25 in May, the problems have resumed, and now the satellite is at least partially inoperable. Also in April, the Kosmos-2479 / Oko-1 rocket attack warning satellite was removed from combat duty; the missile attack warning tasks now lie on ground stations.

Scientific unmanned cosmonautics

In Asia, the "lunar race" and the "Martian race" are in full force - China landed a lunar rover on the moon, and India launched a probe to Mars.

Automatic interplanetary stations

Russia: There are no interplanetary missions, thanks to international cooperation, some devices stand on foreign AMC. The closest mission is Luna-25, launch is expected in 2016.

USA: 7 September 2013 launched the mission to study the lunar atmosphere and lunar dust LADEE. In November, the probe MAVEN went to Mars - to study the Martian atmosphere.

Europe: Rosetta's mission, launched in year 2004 to the comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko, this year will reach its destination. In November, the study of the comet and landing of the descent vehicle is expected.
China: The Chang'e-3 mission won the Asian "lunar race" stage, landing on the moon for the first time after the USSR and the USA and landing the moon rover on the moon for the first time after the USSR.

India: A great success for India was the launch of the first AMC to Mars - the Mangalyaan probe, despite the problems encountered with the upper stage and the dramatic multipulse overclocking, went to Mars. Approaching 24 is expected for September in Mars.

Japan: There is no AMC for this year, the nearest mission is “Hayabusa-2” to the asteroid (162173) 1999 JU3, launch is expected at the end of 2014.

Scientific devices

Russia: The Spektr-R radio telescope continues to operate, Chibis-M explores lightning in the atmosphere, two STORMS are examining micrometeorites and space debris. Last year, the Bion-M No. XXNX bio-satellite successfully flew, the Foton-M1 physical and biological satellite is being prepared - the launch is scheduled for July 4.

USA: 2 July launched the OCO-2 satellite to study carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. 27 June 2013 launched the IRIS solar observatory There were also launches of micro and nanosatellites - technological, simple scientific, student. From the expected launches - climatological DISCOVR.

Europe: The most notable event is the Gaia telescope, which should map the position and motion of stars in our galaxy, and also search for exoplanets, asteroids, and comets.

China: There are no visible scientific devices for the year.

India: There are no noticeable scientific devices for the year, the launch of the astronomical satellite Astrosat is expected in 2015.

Japan: September 14 2013 launched Hisaki ultraviolet telescope.

Removal means

Russia is still "ahead of the rest" in the number of launches. For 2013, Russia has 32 launch, the second place is for the USA with 19 launches, and the third place is for China with 15.

Russia: A gradual renewal of the rocket park is taking place - in the segment of light rockets the conversion Dnipro and Rokot, which we inherited from the USSR, are beginning to descend from the stage, they are replaced by a light modification of the Soyuz-Soyuz-2.1v 1.2 "(Start moved to July 9). Heavy Angara-A5 is expected in the heavy missile segment - the first launch is expected at the end of 2014. In the segment of medium-sized rockets, Soyuz-2.1б should go from experimental to commercial operation, so far only state satellites have been launched on this rocket - they have accumulated statistics.

USA: The first launch was made by an improved version of the Falcon-9 rocket - the Falcon-9 v 1.1. Also, the first flight was made by the hardest modification of the Minotaur light rocket - Minotaur V. Dependence on Russian engines in a cooling relationship superimposed on the ULA and SpaceX economic rivalry, spawning a series of high-profile statements, scandals and lawsuits — the ULA was sued by the Russian engines then again allowed.

Europe: The development of the Ariane-6 rocket is underway, the first launch is not soon - in 2020-2021.

China: Made the first flight solid fuel rocket Kuaizhou.

India: The development of a heavy GSLV Mk III rocket is underway, with a first test launch scheduled for August 2014.

Japan: Made the first flight of the Epsilon light-class launch vehicle.


In my last year post, in my estimation, Russia was in the top three space powers. Since then, little has changed; we still occupy good positions in this high-tech industry. If we talk about where we are lagging behind - I would highlight our problems with the element base, the lifetime of the satellites and the issues of reliability. Last year's accident occurred for a tragicomic reason (a collector error, not caught by quality control), since then Proton managed to start flying again and fell again, for another reason. If we talk about the areas where we are ahead - this is certainly the mass production of excellent launch vehicles, the development of manned cosmonautics and great experience in the medical support of long flights, active progress, for example, the development of fundamentally new orbital tugs with a nuclear power plant.

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  1. saag
    saag 8 July 2014 08: 41
    "... Bigelow has not canceled its plans to launch a private orbital station and, according to the news, has acquired launch services for one Falcon 9 launch, but the payload of that launch is still unknown."

    Interestingly, and plans for a hotel on the moon, I hope he also did not cancel?
    1. chunga-changa
      chunga-changa 8 July 2014 13: 19
      Private companies work like this - they found investors, they advanced how much money was enough. They didn’t find it, standing still. That is, they all depend on money, they will find money, there will be a hotel.
  2. Duke
    Duke 8 July 2014 08: 53
    In my post last year, in my estimation, Russia was in the top three leading space powers. Since then, little has changed; we still occupy good positions in this high-tech industry.

    Thanks to the author for the review.
    1. Giant thought
      Giant thought 8 July 2014 09: 43
      Such review articles, of course, are needed to update in your head the basic information about the space industry. Thanks to the author of the article.
  3. VVooVVaa
    VVooVVaa 8 July 2014 09: 22
    Found time to write! Tonight the Alliance with the meteor is launched and if like a year ago!
    1. Vitaly Anisimov
      Vitaly Anisimov 8 July 2014 10: 50
      She also thought ...)))
      It so happened by chance that the next morning on the air "Proton" with three GLONASS satellites fell epic

      God forbid...!
      Quote: VVooVVaa
      Found time to write! Tonight the Alliance with the meteor is launched and if like a year ago!
  4. Gagarin
    Gagarin 8 July 2014 09: 28
  5. jagdpanzer
    jagdpanzer 8 July 2014 09: 29
    interesting article!
  6. Deff
    Deff 8 July 2014 09: 33
    Interesting studies on the creation of narrow, high-intensity energy beams (microwave and laser) using the uncertainty properties of the vacuum energy to create a narrowly directed, low-scattering pseudo-waveguide / fiber. These studies could help both in combat lasers with a high energy density in the beam, and they are trying to implement similar studies in nuclear centers (there are ideas for using to create, maintain plasma in thermonuclear reactors), as well as in NASA, for long-distance communications and energy feeding long-haul flights, for example, from the lunar base.
    1. izGOI
      izGOI 8 July 2014 22: 37
      This article has little to do with it. But write your article about microwave beams and lasers? Write please. It would be very interesting.
  7. Nikolav
    Nikolav 8 July 2014 10: 17
    Useful ... Nothing more. Thanks to the author.
  8. Roman070280
    Roman070280 8 July 2014 11: 08
    The number of satellites in orbit is simply frightening .. by Russia alone for the past year alone - an impressive list .. And how many have been flying there ?? And as soon as they still find free orbits ..))
    1. The comment was deleted.
    2. Know-nothing
      Know-nothing 8 July 2014 13: 58
      Quote: Roman070280
      And how many have it already flown ??

      Infographics for November 2010 and February 2014 and picture.

  9. Sashko
    Sashko 8 July 2014 11: 18
    If we talk about where we are lagging behind, I would highlight our problems with the elemental base, the period of active existence of satellites and reliability issues.

    The question begs, but where did our all sorts of skolkovo go? All sorts of research institutes? Indeed, with what, but the country is clearly not deprived of brains that can think. Like many Soviet years ago.

    Last year's accident occurred for a tragicomic reason (an error of the assembler, not caught by quality control), since then the Proton managed to start flying again and fell again, for a different reason.

    By and large, those shots who for many years knew that they were clearly not collecting a toy for 5 rubles are no longer there. And the "newbies" should have increased attention in the process of work and toughened requirements and responsibility at work. In order not to relax and always remember at least the cost of their mistakes. About the price not only material, but also the price of the prestige of the country as a whole.
  10. ivmes
    ivmes 8 July 2014 11: 29
    I didn’t see about manned programs ... otherwise interesting
  11. papa-billy
    papa-billy 8 July 2014 11: 34
    Clearly painted near space exploration trends, the author +
  12. pensioner
    pensioner 8 July 2014 11: 40
    Thanks to the author for the review. hi . Briefly, competently, readable. I would like such reviews to appear in relation to other industries. And more often!
  13. saag
    saag 8 July 2014 11: 41
    near space is boring, one Bigelow has a fantasy, why there are no asteroid hunters, space telescopes, missions to Europe
  14. Dan Slav
    Dan Slav 8 July 2014 12: 05
    Thanks for the review.
    Well, that did not fit in with the launch of Proton. However, tomorrow the Angara. )
    Cross your fingers and knock on the tree! )))
  15. The comment was deleted.
  16. Backbone
    Backbone 8 July 2014 13: 27
    Thanks for the nice review. Although briefly, but across the spectrum.
  17. oreh72
    oreh72 8 July 2014 17: 02
    Thanks to the author for a brief and good review! And positive!