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The SPIRAL project's cosmonauts

The cosmonauts for the SPIRAL project were trained in the cosmonauts preparation center (TsPK), they involved themselves for the piloting of the orbital space-plane. The group was composed of 5 cosmonauts, including N2 Herman Stepanovich Titov (1966-70) which did not fly yet in space, Anatoly Petrovich Kuklin (1966-67), Vasily Grigorevich Lazarev (1966-67) and Anatoly Vasilevich Filipchenko (1966-67).

To accomplish space flights on the orbital space-plane the cosmonauts were to be pilots, this is why these cosmonauts involved themselves in the 8-em Scientific Institute of State Вu1042 СV.Chkalova (Ahtubinsk of the field of Astrakhan) on various apparatuses. For example S.Titov, during the preparation with Гu1050 Нu1048 ИBBC in 1967, was involved on MIG-21 and SU-7 (with modifications), SU-9, SU-11, Yack-28 and Yak 25PB.

In 1969, after the reorganization of TsPK (transformed into 1st Research center of Test for the Preparation of the Cosmonauts, J.A.Gagarin, under the status Нu1048 Иof first category) the training group was transformed into 4th service of the 1st office of TsPK. This new service was chaired from March 21, 1969 by S.Titov having at that time the qualification of principal monitor-cosmonaut. Later, January 7, 1971, after the exit of S.Titov of the detachment of the cosmonauts it is Filipchenko which chaired the 4th service as the principal monitor-cosmonaut.

The executives which worked on the SPIRAL project often changed: Léonid Denisovich Kizim (1969-73), Anatoly Nikolaevich Berezovoj (1972-74), Anatoly Ivanovich Dedkov (1972-74), Vladimir Aleksandrovich Dzhanibekov (July-December 1972), Vladimir Sergeevich Kozelsky (August 1969 - October 1971), Vladimir Afanasevich Ljahov (1969-73), Iury Vasilevich Malyshev (1969-73), Alexander Jakovlevich Petrushenko (1970-73) and Iury Viktorovich Romanenko (1972).

The tendency which prevailed with the closing of the SPIRAL project in 1972 was the reduction of manpower of the 4th service (to 3 people) and the reduction of the training. In 1973 the cosmonauts group of the SPIRAL project is renamed in VOS (BOC, Воздушно-Oрбитальный Cамолет, Airbreathing-Orbital Plane), sometimes there is another name: Orbital Military aircraft.

1973 is the last year of the 4th service of the 1st office of TsPK, the later history of the cosmonauts of VOS is reduced to nothing.

According to other sources there was a different fate for the cosmonauts from the SPIRAL project after its closing. 8 of them have the occasion to fly in space in Soyuz vessels, V.G.Lazarev and A.N.Berezovoj (1 flight), A.V.Filipchenko and J.V.Malyshev (2 flights), L.D.Kizim, S. A.Ljahov and J.V.Romanenko (3 flights) and S. A.Dzhanibekov (5 flights!).

The first director of the 4th service, Herman Stepanovich Titov, left the detachment of the cosmonauts on June 17, 1970 and hold down since August 1972 a job in the Police headquarters of the Space Means (GOUKOS) of the Ministry for the Defense of the USSR. On july 4 he was promoted chief assistant of the GOUKOS MO of the USSR for working on studies and researchs, and in this quality supervises work of the creation of Buran-Energia from 1973 to 1991 while being a president of the commission of State for the tests of the Zenit launcher.

An interesting detail is that the experimentative pilots of the EPOS were sure that the first flights in space would be realized by their team, as a representative of the team originator (OKB-155 A.I.Mikojan). And that only after the validation and the delivery of SPIRAL to the customer, other cosmonauts could flight it.