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From SPIRAL to MAKS

Scientific Potential of the NPO MOLNIYA

Dr. Fedotov V.A.
Main components of scientific potential of the NPO MOLNIYA are considered. Ways of increasing qualification of the staff and its involving in the scientific researches, organization of information exchange and international cooperation in the field of the Aerospace System are shown.

Considerable number of academic and branch research organizations was involved in designing and in full-scale simulation and adjustment of orbital spaceship airframe and its systems, and units as well as in solving of fundamentally new scientific problems. To conduct these studies leading scientists of different trends were being attracted, new prospect theoretical methods were being developed, laboratory complexes with universal experimental equipment were being created (including NPO as well).

The joint operation of NPO MOLNIYA labor collective with scientific elite of academic and branch institutes of aviation and space industries determined a necessity to increase rapidly scientific potential and practical knowledge of enterprise employees. To fulfill these tasks a work in two major trends were organized:
1. Increasing of qualification of technical and engineering employees in a university of technical and scientific knowledge organized under NPO. The specialists of NPO MOLNIYA also studied in Central Institute Increasing of qualification of Ministry of Aircraft Industry, training unit department of MAI and row of other institutes.
2. Staff training through established post-graduate study in accordance with different branches:

  • flying vehicle designing and construction;
  • flying vehicle strength;
  • information and measure systems;
  • control in technical systems.

School network of university of scientific and technical knowledge cover each enterprise employee – from designers to workers and investigators. The training was conducted on 12 faculties in more than 50 specialties. It covered study of new problems appeared in theoretical disciplines (aerodynamics, dynamics of flight, ballistics, thermal processes, static and dynamic strength, control systems, science of materials, programming and processing of mathematical software for information and measure complexes and other). Program included enhancement of practical knowledge on all systems of orbital plane, new engineering processes and methodologies of ground adjustments and flight tests of equipment. Wide introduction of computer systems – from powerful to mini- and personal computers – into automated control systems of on-board and ground-based equipment required teaching of employees (from directors to ordinary designers) in programming on different computer languages (Algol, Assembler, Fortran, PL/1, Preprocessor and other). To conduct lessons scientific employees of research institutes, professors and teachers of leading institutes and chief specialists of NPO were attracted. The teaching period (depending on specialty) was 1…4 years. The teaching ended with examinations and defense of graduate works. Great role in quality and productivity advancement played teaching of enterprise employees in Automated Systems of Designing and their introduction in practical activity of departments.

About 80% of total number of technical and engineering employees were involved in university study during years. Simultaneously, production departments conducted obligatory lessons with employees in-groups of advanced teaching. To provide training process in university approximately 40 courses in different disciplines with total volume of approximately 500 printed sheets have been prepared and issued for 10 years. Considerable contribution to employees’ teaching belongs to Mr.: Zalutsky E.G., Shumidub T.V., Solovzov A.A..

NPO post-graduate studies have prepared 30 post-graduates and 136 candidates successfully defended their individual curriculums. Among them great attention was paid to post-graduates specialized in ‘Flying vehicle designing and construction’. In accordance with the Order of Height Certification Committee of USSR 302 of 28.10.87 a special board SSK.048.15.01 on doctor’s thesis was organized for this specialty. By 31st December, 1995 NPO board gave 12 candidates the rank of Doctor of low degree de of technical sciences.

Various scientific and research institutes on the basis of presented thesis have given the rank of Doctor of Science on thematic trends connected with direct solution of scientific problems concerned orbital plane development to the following scientific employees of enterprise – Balashov M.P., Dementyev G.P., Konnov V.V., Osin M.I., Pankevich A.A., Trufakin V.A., Fedotov V.A., Tchugunov O.D..

In development of orbital plane 250 scientific employees with doctor’s degrees have taken part. In other organizations 150 people have defended their doctor’s thesis in different scientific trends.

The scientific development of employees of enterprise and other organizations representing great interest for designers of aviation and space vehicles in innovation approach for solving of complicated engineering problems was periodically published in special works’ collections produced by NPO in accordance with plans of the Ministry of Aviation. Eight collections under the name ‘The works’ collection of NPO MOLNIYA’, eight scientific and technical thematic reviews ‘The questions of aerospace system development’ and ‘The problems of aerospace system development’ series with total volume of 450 printed sheets were published. That materials showed advanced designing methods, aerodynamics and flight dynamics, gas dynamics and heat exchange, mathematical basis of simulation, flying vehicle (FV) designing, production technologies of FV, manual control of FV, dynamics of flight and control, questions on designing automation, information system designing, material of TPS, on-board control systems, ergonomics, on-board equipment and its testing.

Great contribution to collection preparation and issuing belongs to Mr. Zalutsky E.G.

The collections were being sent to scientific and technical institutes and chief design bureaus of the Ministries of Aircraft and General industry taking part in development of ENERGIA-BURAN system.

Activity on improvements of scientific potential played its positive role not only during development of the orbital plane but also during researches on advanced aerospace flying vehicles.

The unprecedented flight of the BURAN Orbiter in 1988 attracted attention of specialist in aerospace science from all over the world to researches of NPO MOLNIYA. The chief designer Dr. Lozino-Lozinsky E.G. and leading scientific employees were actively invited with their talks to international congresses, conferences and symposiums on different problems of space exploration. In particular, NPO MOLNIYA took part in joint works: in 1990…1992 with British Aerospace, ANTK Antonov, TsAGI and TsIAM – the An-225/HOTOL project. In 1993-1994 on the order of the ESA with British Aerospace, ANTK Antonov, TsAGI – RADEM project of experimental aerospace system – technology demonstrator of advanced launch systems. The results of these projects were presented in head office of the ESA in Paris and in European Space Technology and Engineering Center (ESTEC) in Noordwijk (Netherlands) and in American scientific magazines.

The directors and leading specialists of NPO MOLNIYA have taken active part in international forums since 1990: The Congress of International Aeronautics Federation (IAF); conferences of American Institute of Aeronautics and Astrounatics (AIAA); European Conference ‘International year of space’, 1992; International conference ‘The conversion of aerospace complex’, Moscow, 1992; International Aerospace conference ‘Human-Earth-Space’, Moscow, 1992; International aerospace congress, Moscow, 1994.

Dr.: Lozino-Lozinsky G.E., A.T. Tarasov A.T., Osin M.I., Skorodelov V.A, Dudar E.N., Timoshenko V.P., Gorbatenko V.V., Konnov V.V, Mr. Skorodelov V.A, Kosinsky Yu.M. and other have taken part in these scientific forums.

Special attention was given to the talk of NPO MOLNIYA chief designer Dr. Lozino-lozinsky G.E. about problems of BURAN orbital plane development and advanced reusable aerospace systems which was reported by him, personally, and in co-authorship with the leading specialists of NPO MOLNIYA and other enterprises of aviation industry.

The acquaintance of world scientific community with the materials of researches conducted by NPO MOLNIYA stimulated attracting of leading specialists of enterprise to the participation in many programs of European Space Agency. In particular – to researches on contract with a group of French and German companies on application of experience gained during BURAN development for designing of HERMES and other prospect space flying vehicles.

The scientific authority of leading scientists – employees of NPO MOLNIYA in aerospace researches – was confirmed by their election as members of domestic and foreign academies. For example, Dr. Lozino-Lozinsky G.E. was elected as a full member of International Astronauts Academy, International Engineering Academy, Ukrainian Academy of Engineering Science, Russian Academy of cosmonauts, academician-secretary, director of aerospace department of Russian Engineering Academy. As corresponding members of Russian Engineering Academy Dr. Balashov M.P., G.P. Dementyev G.P., Gorbatenko V.V. were elected. As academy councilors of the same academy Dr. Dudar E.N. (academic secretary), Mr. Skorodelov V.A., and Mr. Trufanov Yu.N. were elected. Dr. Ossin M.I. has become corresponding member of Russian Academy of Aeronautics.

The experience of NPO MOLNIYA confirms that indispensable conditions for solution of complicated engineering problems are pre-planned advanced training of employees, involving of specialists in scientific researches, organization of scientific and engineering exchange between leading institutes and design bureaus.