Author: Alexander Orlov
Above — ISS "World" at the bottom — the shuttle "Columbia"
Creating a national missile defense system and, therefore, a nuclear blitzkrieg against Russia delayed for at least five years, and the Russian commercial space gets a chance on the multibillion-dollar orders
The next "shuttle" crashed. And that's good. Very good. Because killing all five pilots — four American and one Israeli — by the way, who took part in the bombing of the civilian population as well as facilities in Iraq. But the American military machine, making a bet on the total aerospace dominance, received such a hole that we can safely say that the crash of the military, we emphasize — Military "shuttle" unwittingly saved the lives of tens, perhaps hundreds of thousands of people have already written to the "collateral damage" regular military actions.
And it's not just about the inhabitants of Iraq and other distant countries. The concern is that the creation of American national missile defense system (in which this was carried out starting), is one facet of which you begin the script aerospace Blitzkrieg against Russia.
Is it time to get the better of someone else's snot? Cried whether Valery Chkalov and Soviet aircraft over the failed tests "Messershmity", even though the war with Germany had not yet begun? Cried a former SS officer Wernher von Braun — the father of the American space — over the explosion of the R-7 ("East") in 1960, which claimed the lives of dozens of people, including scientists, engineers and Marshal Nedelina?
So why do we have to grieve over the loss of "shuttle" — is the same military aircraft as the B-52, or "stealth"?
And why the Russian leadership should condole crash military program aimed — official documents do not hide it — primarily against Russia?
You can certainly feel sorry for the two astronavtok, who covered "biological experiments" working off a top-secret program on missile and anti-satellite weapons. But do not forget that their deaths — entirely on the conscience of the Pentagon and NASA, which ordered and developed for decades literally dragged by the ears technically dead-end program for reliability reminiscent of Russian roulette.
So the relatives of the victims have every moral and legal right to file lawsuits NASA, the Pentagon and other instances, put civilian hostages to the scarcity of reliable military vehicles. And if American experts would be afraid to give such a conclusion, it may be able to give Russian specialists, as well, and Chinese.
Now for the technical side of the disaster. Whatever the interpretation or were declared officially, it is a fact that has been damaged by only one of the many thousands of thermal protection tiles, bringing to the stage of intensive aerodynamic heating in the building burnt a hole into which a huge velocity head rushed flow of heated air braking.
Indeed, it is located on a large area of thermal protection of compressed carbon or ceramic fibers — the narrowest part of not only the design, but the whole concept of the "shuttle" (sort of — and the "Buran", but in the "Buran" many deficiencies have been addressed.) In contrast to conventional disposable thermal protection landers, thermal protection, "space shuttle" has to work many times, or a "reusable" is a fallacy. A comparative fragility and porosity of the thermal protection tiles made it almost impossible to figure out which of them is ready to fall off, dooming the crew to death. The only way — to reduce heat loads, improving the aerodynamics of the rocket plane that will allow more robust and user-heat protection on the metal base.
Incidentally, due to the limited reliability of the "shuttle" the descent, it could be equipped with a rescue capsule of the type "soyuzovskoy". But the "shuttle", in contrast to the "Buran", do not address the issue of automatic landing. So that's flown into space seven-seater mass graves with a free cremation, and seems to be flying in the future. Because no other means of orbiting large cargo and astronauts in America today, no. And it is more than serious.
Initially, when the funding for the program began in the calculation pawned one hundred flights per ship — plus the re-use of the first steps. In the long run, "reusability" fell three to four times, not counting replacements and motor thermal protection. By the way, the creation of a rocket engine capable of outputting a rocket into space not once but a hundred times — unrealistic task, which also failed to solve the developers of "shuttle". Ultimately, the "shuttle" was embodied in metal technical dead end.
Compared with a conventional booster requirements for reliability of the components and systems have increased by at least two orders of magnitude, and the required reusability failed. Especially considering the fact that only a reusable third stage of the system.
However, the "shuttle" has other inherent drawbacks. For instance, term of the guaranteed technical reliability is less than two weeks after the launch.
A period of guaranteed technical reliability of the "Union" reaches many months.
What does this mean? And the fact that, with respect to the orbital station ("World", ISS) "shuttle" is only suitable for visiting, as already Two weeks after reaching orbit guarantee the safe return is not. More than a simple but reliable "Union" is ready to descend from orbit for months. Therefore, without the "Union" as duty rescue vehicle manned flight ISS is unreal!
As a result, "shuttle" — the narrowest part of the U.S. manned space and military programs. But today, it turned out that this place is much narrower than previously thought.
The question arises: can the loss of one of several shuttle (estimates the remaining amount of devices differing from 2 to 5) have a decisive impact on the deployment of space echelon of the U.S. missile defense?
Will — because after the disaster have radically revise the remaining service life and reliability and under "shuttles". A radical revision can not be avoided because it is not about a single unreliable node, which can be modified or replaced. And not even on the solid rocket booster — as it was the explosion of "Challenger" in 1986 (when, incidentally, flights interrupted for more than two years). We are talking about the unreliability of thermal protection, which is almost impossible to change. So it will be at least a two-fold reduction of the resource remaining ships. That, accordingly, reduce the capacity of Americans to withdraw large cargo into orbit also doubled, and doubled the output will increase the unit cost of the payload.
Moreover, a new assessment of the reliability of the system will raise the issue either a radical reduction Crew to 1-2 "kamikaze" or a complete switch to unmanned operation.
But in any case, the "debriefing" and revision of the surviving units will take at least two years, as well as after the "Challenger". And this time the next presidential election in the United States. And this election chief "hawk" of the world and a follower of the ideology of "Star Wars" will do with plucked tail — with the "shuttles" laid up. It is difficult to say whether they will put to Disneyland and will collapse if they hangars, but against the background of growing Chinese space program, George W. Bush will not look better than Monica Lewinsky.
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Delay U.S. programs — it's good, but after disruption of the schedule to deploy missile defenses as the Americans try to destroy what was left of the So
viet aerospace industry in Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan. Unfortunately, the ability to do quite a lot of them.
But on the other hand, for Russia to become a reality intercept the American multi-billion dollar market of commercial launches, new incentives to cooperation with China and India. After all, if, for example, to restore the system of "energy", then after 7-8 years is technically possible international expedition to Mars.
Mission to Mars WITHOUT AMERICA. But who in the Kremlin decides to it, gentlemen?