Libmonster ID: MD-486

by Vladimir YEFANOV, Dr. Sc. (Tech.), Deputy Head of the Experimental Design Bureau for Science; Maxim MARTYNOV, Can. Sc. (Tech.), Deputy Chief Designer, Head of the Experimental Design Bureau; Konstantin PICHKHADZE, Dr. Sc. (Tech.), First Deputy Chief Designer and Deputy Director General of Lavochkin Research and Production Association (Moscow)

In 2012 Lavochkin Research and Production Association awarded the Order of Lenin and two Orders of the Red Banner of Labor--a leading enterprise (from 1965) of the Russian rocket and space industry creating automatic space vehicles intended for fundamental scientific research--celebrates its 75th anniversary.

According to the decision of the USSR Council of Labor and Defense, our enterprise (a former furniture factory) switched to the production of aircraft in 1937. This newly established aircraft plant manufactured propeller fighters Lagg-3, La-5, and La-7 (the latter was reputed as the best national fighter of the World War II).

From 1945 Lavochkin Experimental Design Bureau launched production of jet fighters. They were designed on the basis of vast scientific and experimental data in cooperation with the leading Soviet institutes of aircraft industry--the Central Institute of Aerohydrodynamics named after N. Zhukovsky, Flight Research Institute named after M. Gromov, Central Institute of Aircraft Motor Engineering named after P. Baranov, All-Union Institute of Aircraft Materials, National Institute of Aircraft Technologies, etc. Their fruitful cooperation is still in progress. The prominent designer Semyon Lav-

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ochkin (corresponding member of the USSR AS from 1958), head of our enterprise, established a number of specialized laboratories: a laboratory for static tests, laboratory of hydropneumatics, laboratory of on-board equipment, engine laboratory, technological laboratory, etc. These laboratories formed a well-equipped ground experimental base. Production facilities were also updated.

As a result, a new experimental fighter La-160 with an arrow-type wing was designed in 1947 in the USSR, then jet-propelled La-15, followed by La-176, an arrowhead aircraft that was the first plane to achieve the speed of light; then La-250 ("Anaconda")--a fighter equipped with air-to-air self-guidance head missiles--was designed. In mid-1950s drone target planes La-17 and photo reconnaissance aircraft were designed and produced there.

In 1950, the plant expanded its profile: in addition to aircraft, the enterprise launched production of space vehicles. Pursuant to a government decree, Lavochkin Experimental Design Bureau was to design a surface-to-air missile S-25 ("Berkut") for the Air Defense System of Moscow--it appeared in a short period of time and passed into service to the Soviet Army. In 1957, engineers of the Experimental Design Bureau developed the first in the world hypersonic intercontinental strategic cruise missile ("Burya") with a ramjet engine able to deliver a nuclear warhead to a long distance.

Rocket engineering projects were very powerful drivers stimulating development of our design bureau. We attracted specialists in on-board automatic control systems. New departments were established: flight dynamics, control systems, radio systems, mathematical modeling and extreme real flight condition simulation departments.

Design solutions imprinted in the names of our projects and other developments predetermined perfection of aircraft designs and a high level of the Lavochkin scientific school; thanks to these achievements in 1965 Experimental Design Bureau-1 (today OAO "Rocket and Space Corporation 'Energiya' named after S. Korolev")* was entrusted to design automatic space vehicles to study the Moon and planets of the solar system. In mid-1960s, Georgy Babakin** (corresponding member of the USSR AS from 1970) was appointed Chief Designer of the enterprise. The most remarkable period of outer space exploration with automatic space vehicles is associated with the name of this scientist.

In February 1966, a space vehicle Luna-9 designed at our bureau that made a soft landing on the Moon was launched. It transmitted cycloramas of its landing area to the Earth that enabled scientists to determine sizes and forms of hollows and stones. They helped finally establish that there is no thick dust layer on the natural satellite of the Earth. The space vehicle was followed by a series of artificial satellites of the Moon based on the space platform designed at EDB-1 put into orbit by Molniya booster. Development of a powerful booster Proton (UR-500 K) made it possible to design advanced automatic lunar stations, which opened up new vistas for solving complex scientific tasks.

In this period we designed a new space lunar platform that was used to produce lunar robot vehicles of the next generation. They were modular vehicles consisting of an orbitlanding unit and a scientific complex that could be changed depending on a task: artificial satellites were

See: N. Koroleva, "His Name and Cosmos Are Inseparable", Science in Russia, No. 1, 2007.--Ed.

** See: Yu. Markov, "Designer of Interplanetary Stations", Science in Russia, No. 6, 2004.--Ed.

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equipped with devices enabling remote surveying of the Moon, take-off rockets to deliver lunar soil to the Earth, and moon rovers to deliver mobile research laboratories to the Moon.

It is worth saying that for the missions of 1970 (Luna-16), 1972 (Luna-20) and 1976 (Luna-24) engineers of the USSR AS Institute of Applied Mathematics (today RAS Institute of Applied Mathematics named after M. Keldysh) solved a complex ballistic task: they directed a descent module to a predetermined return point without correcting the return orbit. Space vehicles Luna-17 (1970) and Luna-21 (1973) delivered mobile laboratories Moon Rover-1 and Moon Rover-2 to the Moon.

Today, all leading space countries are interested in the indepth research of the Moon. It is explained by expediency of development of its resources and a prospective construction of production sites there that will first function automatically and later on will be controlled by shifts of astronauts--to carry out technological, maintenance and other operations.

Polar areas of the Moon are of the greatest interest for the scientists, since signs of presence of water ice and different volatile matters were identified there. Oxygen and hydrogen produced from water will likely be used for life support systems at future production sites. These few elements could be used to produce fuel to make flights from the Moon to other planets of the Solar system. The scientists are enthusiastic to con-

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struct astrophysical and astronomical stations there, since these laboratories will not be exposed to different physical fields of the Earth.

At the present moment, Lavochkin Experimental Design Bureau is developing a series of new automatic space vehicles: Luna-Resurs and Luna-Glob*. The latter project is targeted to detailed stuidies of the exosphere and a surface of this cosmic body both from the orbit of its artificial satellite and by contact methods on the surface of the Moon. It is planned to carry out fundamental studies of the Moon as a small celestial body and make astrophysical observations--of high-energy particles, etc. This is why the on-board equipment of this space vehicle will include an astrophysical radio-wave detector "LORD" that will solve a unique task--studies of cosmic rays and ultrahigh energy neutrino (over 1019 eV).

The Luna-Resurs project is planned to carry out research on the surface of the south pole of the Moon, including with the help of moon rovers, as well as deep-hole drilling and further delivery of the most interesting samples to the Earth.

In addition to the above-listed automatic lunar space vehicles, specialists of our research and production enterprise designed satellites to carry out studies of the

See: V. Yefanov, M. Martynov, K. Pichkhadze, "Space Robots for Scientific Studies", Science in Russia, No. 1, 2012.--Ed.

Venus--once we won all appropriate world priorities with their help. Thus, in 1972 the space vehicle Venera-8 was launched and made a soft landing on the surface of the Venus for the first time in the world. While it was moving towards the Venusian surface, the satellite transmitted data on its temperature, and pressure, wind velocity, atmospheric composition and light level of the planet. After landing, it measured gamma radiation soil composition there. In 1975, the descent module of the next generation Venera-9 transmitted a photograph made on the surface of the Venus; in 1983, a radar set installed on board Venera-15 made a map of its surface. Then, in 1984, space vehicles Vega-1 and Vega-2 were launched that delivered landing units to the Venusian surface and balloon probes to the atmosphere of the planet, continued their way to the Galley's comet and finally transmitted photos of its nucleus to the Earth. At the moment, we are working on the project of development of a new space vehicle designed for long-term studies of the Venus.

Moreover, our specialists designed six space vehicles for exploration of Mars*. Mars-3 was the first satellite in the world that made a soft landing on the Red Plan-

See: E. Galimov, "Prospects of Planetary Studies", Science in Russia, No. 6, 2004; the same author: "Phobos-Grunt", the Russian Project", Science in Russia, No. 1, 2006.--Ed.

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et in 1971. Then Phobos-1 and Phobos-2 were designed and launched.

Our design bureau is involved in the national space projects "Phobos-Grunt-2" and "Mars-Grunt" targeted to deliver appropriate samples of the soil from these space bodies. As a priority task, we are working on the international European project ExoMars, envisaging studies of the planet and near-Mars environment with remote and contact methods.

The enterprise is actively participating in the construction of orbital astronomical and astrophysical stations. For example, in 1983 the space vehicle Astron was launched to orbit that operated there for six years; in 1989 the space vehicle Granat got off the ground and worked in outer space for almost ten years.

In the summer of 2012, the astrophysical station Spektr-R designed at our bureau was launched (this station is designed to research the Universe in the radiofrequency range of electromagnetic radiation, forming in combination with ground radiotelescopes a scientific unit with a base around 350,000 km, which ensures an angular resolution during observations). At the moment, specialists of the Experimental Design Bureau are building space vehicles Spektr-RG and Spektr-UF to study the Universe in the X-ray, gamma and UV radiation. These stations (to be launched in the near future) are based on the new orbital platform Navigator, which successfully passed flight tests on board the space vehicle Spektr-R in 2011.

Solar studies, space plasma physics, solar-terrestrial relationship and other programs are of great applied relevance and are also very important for fundamental space studies. Thus, in the mid-1990s, our space vehicles of Prognoz and Interbol series helped obtain unique results. According to a number of experts, such works should be continued on a new design and technological base. For this purpose a new space complex Rezonans is being designed. It will ensure an authentic knowledge of parameters of processes of low-frequency wave propagation in the magnetoactive plasma of the terrestrial magnetosphere, mechanisms of resonance interaction of waves and particles in the near-Earth space, control of cosmic impacts on the magnetosphere of the Earth, etc.

To survey the Sun from a relatively close distance (30-40 of its radii), we carry out pre-project studies of the space vehicle Intergeliozond. It is intended for studies of parameters of solar radiation using highly sensitive measurement equipment in optical, UV, X-ray and gamma ranges.

Fundamental space research carried out with the participation of Lavochkin Experimental Design Bureau include not only surveying of the Moon, Sun, planets, small bodies of the Solar system, but also galaxies, stars and interstellar space. Both of these research directions determine specific requirements to the scientific equipment, design of our space vehicles and their support

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systems. According to the authors of this article, it would be reasonable to develop the first direction on the basis of design and technological accomplishments of the Phobos-Grunt project, and the second direction on the basis of a universal space orbital precision platform Navigator.

Besides, we design and produce small-size space vehicles on the basis of the standardized orbital platform Karat. At present, the space vehicle Zond-PP is being prepared for launching. In the near future we are planning to launch four analogous small-size satellites ordered by the RAS institutes.

Thus, with a view of the activities described above, in the year of the 75th anniversary of our enterprise, we are facing the future with optimistic care.


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