The Space Shuttles - US and Russian.

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Master Sergeant
Feb 9, 2006
George - South Africa
The US Space Shuttles: Part 1

The US was the first country to walk on the moon and the first to send a shuttle into space in 1980. History were made and everyone thought that this is the new best thing and the new transportation into space.

In 1986 it was proved that it is not so perfect and shocked the world and NASA who had quite a good safety record. Challenger proved that to be over confident is not a good thing. It was caused by a faulty O ring in one of the boosters. The crew did not die of the explosion, they died when the crew cabin hit the ocean. All seven crew members died.

NASA was recless and were not carefull enough. This were proved in 2003 when Columbia broke up after attempting to return to earth. The same shuttle that were the first shuttle to enter space also made sure that the days of the Space Shuttle is numbered.



Challenger Disaster.










Columbia disaster:




the american and russian space programs are as safe as one can make them you are dealing with extreme flight tolerences 1/2 degrees errors can lead to catastrophic problems. Ships have been around for thousands of years yet they still sink no technology is fool proof
Yes, true mate, but NASA inquiry found after both disasters that they were recless. I agree, with you that every time they go up the change it wont gets larger.

The Russian shuttle is actually safer than the US shuttle, but the Russians also have their problems.

The whole "shuttle" concept is a half-assed, stop gap vehicle that is a spce ship wanna be. When we get a vehicle that can take off without massive, bulbous, jury-rigged tanks and rockets and can land with power then we'll have a real space ship.
Yes, the thing is that the Russian one is totally reuseable, everything is used again. Only the two rocket boosters and the shuttle of the US shuttle is used again.

I agree Twitch, but I think the whole idea was to make the shuttle the forerunner for that kind of idea.

Yep, I agree, but if you look at the Space ship one project you can see that the way of going into space have changed. It is cheaper and faster.

Next I will do a post on the Buran Russian Space Shuttle and what has happend to all of the Russian space shuttles.

Soviet "Buran" programme was just a responce to American Space Shuttle.Russians always preferred single-time space ships like "Soyuz".
Well it was a great project and it is realy the best of all the shuttles in the world. I will post my info on the Buran Project just as soon as I can conferm the info I have.

The origionally designed NASA space shuttle was going to be 100% reusable. But in order to gain support for funding, it had to take on military mission rolls.

This led it to be increased in size and complexity.

The Buran never did a manned misison. It cannot be compared to the US space shuttle.
Yes, I understand what you guys are saying, but the thing that I meant is that the Buran is totally build better and can withstand the heat through the atmosphere way better than the US shuttle. The US shuttle made great missions and has so far been great during its career. The Buran did one mission and due to money problems in the USSR it did not fly again. It is actually a shame that the Russian government does not have money to have used the Buran again, but the original Buran was destroyed and thus officially ended the Russian space shuttle program.

I am almost finished with my research on the Buran and will post in in two days from now.

I'm sure in theory it was better, but it only did one unmanned mission to test it before being mothballed due to the demise of the USSR.

It's in the same category as the XB70, Avro Arrow and TSR.2 as potentially superior machines, but as none saw service beyond limited testing it's a moot point. It's easy to say something could have been great when you don't have a real life history of service to back it up.
Buran today ( 11.04.2006 )


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Nope, that is not Buran, that is a test bed. The original Buran were destroyed and that one never were to be used.

Russian Space Shuttles: Part 1

Well like I said I will post info on the Russian Space Shuttle project and here it is.

The link is to a site where you can find all the info on the whole project and also all of the Russian Shuttles build.

The site is great at finding out what happend to the whole project.

The real Buran were destroyed in a heavy storm when the roof collapsed and destroyed the shuttle.

This is Buran on top of a dummy ENERGIA Rocket before she was destroyed in 2002. Buran is the only one of the Russian Space Shuttles to have made it into space.

This is Buran after the accident in 2002.


This is a drawing to show how the shuttle looks inside, but this is not Buran but a Aero Tester with four jet engines on her back, she had everything on the inside that the real Buran have. She was used to train the pilots who would land the Buran after her space flight from a controle room. The second link is media of the Aero tester taking off and landing.


Now the pics and media I got from the company's website that designed and build the Shuttle Buran. The picture and media gallery is at the bottom and have great pics and media material.

I will post some more pics again of the shuttle.

syscom3 said:
Looks like a near exact replica of the US shuttle

Similarities to NASA Space Shuttle
Because Buran's debut followed that of Space Shuttle Columbia's, and because there were striking visual similarities between the two shuttle systems—a state of affairs which recalled the similarity between the Tupolev Tu-144 and Concorde supersonic airliners—many speculated that Cold War espionage played a role in the development of the Soviet shuttle. It is now known, however, that, while externally it was aerodynamically similar to the Space Shuttle, internally it was all engineered and developed domestically, many features being significantly more advanced.

Key differences from the NASA Space Shuttle
Buran was not an integral part of the system, but rather a payload for the Energia launcher. Other payloads than Buran, with mass as high as 80 metric tons, could be lifted to space by Energia, as was the case on its first launch.
Energia was designed from the start to be configured for a variety of uses, rather than just a shuttle launcher. The heaviest configuration (never built) would have been able to launch 200 tons into orbit.
As Buran was designed to be capable of both manned and unmanned flight, it had automated landing capability; the manned version was never operational.
The orbiter had no main rocket engines, freeing space and weight for additional payload; the largest cylindrical structure is the Energia carrier-rocket, not just a fuel tank.
The boosters used liquid propellant (kerosene/oxygen).
The Energia carrier, including the main engines, was designed to be reusable but funding cuts meant that a reusable version of Energia was never completed. The U.S. Space Shuttle has reusable main engines in the orbiter and reusable Solid Rocket Boosters but requires a new External Tank for each flight, as the tank is not recovered and is allowed to burn up in the atmosphere.
Buran could lift 30 metric tons into orbit in its standard configuration, compared to the Space Shuttle's 25 metric tons.
The high lift-to-drag ratio of Buran is 6.5 against 5.5 for the Space Shuttle.
Buran was designed to return 20 metric tons of payload from orbit, as against 15 metric tons for the Space Shuttle orbiter.
The thermal protection tiles on the Buran and U.S. Space Shuttles are laid out differently. Soviet engineers believed their design to be thermodynamically superior. Buran's TPS does not have the grey Reinforced Carbon-Carbon (RCC) panels or nosecap of the STS, the former being the primary cause of the destruction of the Space Shuttle Columbia in 2003.
Buran's equivalent of the shuttle's Orbital Maneuvering System used safer propellants with lower toxicity (GOX/Kerosene), and gave higher performance.
Buran was designed to be moved to the launch pad horizontally on special train-tracks, and then erected at the launch site. This enabled a much faster roll out than the US Space Shuttle, which is moved vertically and hence very slowly.

From Wikipedia :|
Amazing that the cockpit and crew section looks exactly like the US shuttle.

BTW, this was NASA's version of the shuttle from the early 70's prior to the militaries change in requirements.
Yep, the Russians did copy the the US Shuttle mostly, but it is a bit smaller and does not have the main engines of the US shuttle and has way better tiles than the US ones. The whole thing is that they both are great technical marvels and took space exploration to another level, but is a costly thing to have and operate. Space is a dangerous and costly thing, but dam these baby's is really something else.

It is a shame that the Buran was not better preserved, but it was not the property of the Russians.


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