Oct 4, 2007

The Buran Space Shuttle

The Buran Space Shuttle, was the only fully completed and operational space shuttle from the Soviet Union's Buran program. It had only one (unmanned) spaceflight, in 1988. This program was highly expensive. So, due to lack of credit, the program was cancelled by Russia in 1993.

The Buran was transported on the back of Antonov An-225 aircraft, which was designed for this task only.

The first and only orbital launch of the (unmanned) shuttle Buran 1.01 was at 3:00 UTC on 15 November 1988. It was lifted into orbit by the specially designed Energia booster rocket. The life support system was not installed and no software was installed to run the computer display screens. The shuttle orbited the Earth twice in 206 minutes of flight. On its return, it performed an automated, safe landing on the shuttle runway at Baikonur.

The whole Buran program was cancelled in 1993. On May 12, 2002, a hangar housing a Buran 1.01 orbiter (possibly the actual Buran that flew in 1988) collapsed due to incomplete maintenance. The collapse killed eight workers and destroyed the orbiter as well as a mockup of an Energia booster rocket. Link


Anonymous said...

Here is more informations about Buran.

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