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Buran’s manipulator in St Petersburg


This strange tower, belonging to the institute цнии ртк (Central Institute of Search and Experiments for Robotics and Cybernetics), always raised questions about its purpose. Some days ago a group of young people, living in the neighborhood, managed to get inside and see what it holds.

This is what they discovered, the Buran‘s remote manipulator system.


Remote Manipulator System Remote Manipulator System Remote Manipulator System

Source: tankist.

25th anniversary of the Energia’s flight


Today we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the first Energia‘s flight on May 15, 1987.

It is at 21h30 (Moscow time) that the rocket was launched for the first time with the Polious space combat station as a payload. The launch went fine, despite a trouble during take off, but a malfunction in the orientation system didn’t allowed it to reach it’s orbit.

Polyus, star wars, MIR-2, USSR

The second and last launch of Energia took place one year later with Buran on November 15, 1988.

Even if Energia was a versatile, adjustable, very powerful (100t in low earth orbit) and reliable (2 launch and 2 success) rocket, the lack of large scale projects and the collapse of the USSR buried it. Only its boosters made from Zenit launcher are still used today.

Death of test pilot Pyotr Ostapenko


It is with a simple press release that the Russian press agency (RIA Novosti) announced the death of the test pilot Pyotr Ostapenko on April 8, 2012, at the age of 83.

Pyotr Ostapenko worked all his career (1958-1981) for the design bureau MiG as a test pilot. He flew more than 5000 hours, did more than 10000 landings, and held 8 world records of which some are not smashed.
Thus he worked during the 70s on the space program Spiral as a test pilot of EPOS 105-11 (analog plane of the space plane EPOS).

During his career he helped develop no less than 64 planes such as MiG-21, MiG-23, MiG-25, MiG-27, MiG-29 and the MiG-31. His contribution to the school of test pilots was very important.

He was awarded of :

  • Order of the Red Star (1964)
  • Order of the Red Banner (1966)
  • Lenin’s Order (1971)
  • Hero of the USSR (1971)
  • Test Pilot of the USSR (1973)
  • Order of the Red Banner of Labour (1974)
  • Laureate of the state price of the USSR (1981)


Snowboard show at the Gorky park

Last week in Moscow, at the Gorky park, was a snowboard contest the Adrenalin Games 2012.

Some installations (stairs and quarters) were made for the competitor in front of the Buran OK-TVA whereas a giant screen was settled behind her. During the show animations were displayed on the shuttle and the screen giving a striking effect.

Pictures of the show:

Gorky park show Buran Adrenalin Gorky park show Buran Adrenalin Gorky park show Buran Adrenalin

Gorky park show Buran Adrenalin Gorky park show Buran Adrenalin Gorky park show Buran Adrenalin


And the video of the animations:


Pictures of Energia M

Here is some pictures taken in October 2010 of the Energia M mock-up in the vertical vibration test building in Baikonur.

Vibration test building Energia M Energia M

Energia M Energia M Energia M

Energia M

Other pictures are here in the gallery.

Happy birthday Buran-Energia.com !


Today buran-energia.com has 5 years. It has been 5 years since I have started this project to make a website in french/english about the Buran space shuttle, and with the researchs I did I discovered other Soviets space projects (such as Spiral and BOR, …) which gave me the the idea to speak about them, and now the website is dedicated not only to Buran but to the Soviets and Russians space shuttle.

I still have a lot of subjects to speak about and informations to complete about Buran (ground installations, landing system, …).

So stay tunned.

Chaplygin institut

The Siberian scientific aviation institute named after S.A. Chaplygin is located at Novosibirsk and is the biggest aviation research center of the East Russia.

This institute is equipped with apparels to heat up and cool down materials, this is why it seems that they worked on the Buran’s heat shield.

Here is two pictures of the vertical stabilizer located in the hangar.

Buran s vertical stabilizer Buran s vertical stabilizer

Source: Gelio.

Pictures of Ptichka in the MZK

Shuttle OK-1.02

Few weeks ago some people got inside the Buran’s assembly building at Baikonur, the MZK. They found two shuttles, the test shuttle OK-MT and the second shuttle of first generation OK-1.02 named Ptichka (little bird).

This shuttle was finished at 95% when the program was stopped and had some modifications in comparison of the model which flew.

On those pictures we can see that the cabin lost a lot of its on-board apparels during the last years. It is difficult to imagine what was really the completion level at that time. We can also see the details of the air-lock module for docking with the MIR space station (APAS system).

Pictures of the inside and the outside of the shuttle.