Soyuz-5: the next stage has been passed
The chief designer of the promising Soyuz-5 launch vehicle, Alexander Cherevan, spoke about the stages of work on the creation of a new rocket, its differences from Soyuz-2 and technologies that for the first time in the history of the Progress Rocket and Space Center (part of the State Corporation Roscosmos ") will be used in the production of a new carrier.
A completely different "Union"
For the consumer - the customer of the launch services - the Soyuz-5 rocket differs from the Soyuz-2 first of all in its carrying capacity. The Soyuz-2 medium-class launch vehicle will launch about 8 tons into low-earth orbit, depending on the launch site. Soyuz-5 is also a medium-class carrier, but into the same orbit, for example, from the Baikonur cosmodrome, it will launch 17 tons. Thus, the characteristics of the new vehicle are more than twice better in terms of the payload mass.
As for the layout of the Soyuz-5 launch vehicle, it is also fundamentally different: the Soyuz-2 is designed according to the packet-tandem scheme, while the Soyuz-5 uses a tandem layout, that is, the stages are connected in series, not in parallel. as in "package". The new rocket will be two-stage. Such an arrangement is more profitable from the point of view of the complexity of manufacturing, simplicity of design, and the complexity of preparing the product at the launch and technical complexes. Soyuz-5 will be able to launch various payloads into low-earth orbits, and with the use of an upper stage - into geo-transfer and geostationary orbits, into departure trajectories - to solve a fairly wide range of tasks.
One of the serious advantages of the new rocket is that the Soyuz-5 units have the maximum possible overall and mass characteristics, at which the components of the rocket can be transported by any means of transport: road, rail and air. The diameter of the first stage block is 4,100 mm with a length of about 35 meters - a load of such dimensions can be transported by rail, in addition, such a block will fit into the An-124 aircraft.
The Soyuz-5 will use onboard electrical systems, including the control system, created on the basis of domestic components. The control system is effective both in terms of overall weight characteristics and the number of tasks to be solved. For the first time, the new rocket will use a strapdown inertial unit with sensitive elements on small-sized and lightweight fiber-optic gyroscopes. The construction of the control system "Soyuz-5" with the use of a high-speed productive on-board computer will minimize the connection between the missile and the equipment of the technical and launch complexes. This will simplify the process of preparing the product, simplify and reduce the cost of ground equipment. The capabilities of the on-board computer will ensure the deployment of all test modes directly on board,
It should be especially noted that according to the project, the Soyuz-5 launch vehicle will use engines with the world's best characteristics in terms of specific thrust impulse. The main engine of the first stage RD-171 MV developed by the Scientific and Production Association "Energomash" named after academician V.P. Glushko and RD-0124MS developed by the Voronezh Design Bureau of Chemical Automatics (part of the State Corporation "Roskosmos") on the second provide the maximum possible performance on the fuel vapor oxygen - naphthyl.
Safety is key
The Soyuz-5 will use an emergency engine protection system. Throughout the entire area of operation of the engines, starting from the start-up, this system will allow cyclically with a duration of several milliseconds to assess the state of the engine according to the parameters of its operation. Such a system will help to identify a possible emergency situation, prevent its further development and promptly issue a command to turn off the engine and an "Accident" command to the payload. The emergency protection system is installed on the first and second stages of the new launch vehicle. In the event of an emergency on the first stage engine, it will save the rocket and the launch complex, and in the second stage flight section, if it is possible to continue flying on one of the engine blocks, it will turn off two cameras of the emergency unit, and two cameras of the second unit will work.
New materials - new technologies
The material from which the tanks of the Soyuz-5 launch vehicle will be made - aluminum alloy 1580 - will be used for the first time. Compared to the alloy used in the production of Soyuz-2, it has improved mechanical characteristics combined with a fairly acceptable cost. Thanks to the new alloy, the technical characteristics of the rocket are significantly improved.
For the first time in the practice of the Progress Rocket and Space Center, a combined bottom of the oxidizer and fuel tanks is used at the second stage. This makes it possible to reduce the mass of the second stage structure, to lighten it in relation to the traditional scheme, and it also allows to reduce the dimensions of the unit.
Friction stir welding will be used in the production of Soyuz-5. This new technological process will be used for the first time in the Progress RCC for assembly and welding of tanks. The equipment for automatic friction stir welding is manufactured by the Russian company ZAO Cheboksary Enterprise Sespel. For "Soyuz-5" by order of the RCC "Progress" for friction welding with stirring of parts from aluminum alloys "Sespel" will manufacture three units and accessories for them. According to the terms of reference, the installations must provide welding of plates with a thickness of about 30 mm. The use of this technological process will provide welding of the required thickness in one pass, with high quality and characteristics. By the end of the third quarter, the first unit will be delivered to our plant.
The first launch from Baikonur
The Soyuz-5 launch vehicle can be operated at different cosmodromes. So far, launches are planned from the complex at Baikonur within the framework of the Russian-Kazakh project "Baiterek". But Soyuz-5 will be able to launch from any cosmodrome - from Vostochny and Sea Launch - provided that an appropriate ground infrastructure is created: a technical position and a launch complex.