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VKS series
In reaction to US X-30 project, government decrees of 27 January and 19 July 1986 ordered development of a Soviet equivalent. Development continued until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1990.

AKA: MVKS. Status: Cancelled 1990. Payload: 25,000 kg (55,000 lb). Gross mass: 700,000 kg (1,540,000 lb). Height: 71.00 m (232.00 ft). Diameter: 10.00 m (32.00 ft).

In reaction to US X-30 project, government decrees of 27 January and 19 July 1986 ordered development of a Soviet equivalent. The Ministry of Defense issued technical specifications on 1 September for an MVKS, a single-stage reusable aerospaceplane system. The MKVS was to provide effective and economic delivery to near-earth orbit; develop the technology for effective transatmospheric flight; provide super high-speed intercontinental transport, and fulfill military objectives in and from space. It is known that the Tupolev, Yakovlev, and Energia design bureaus submitted designs.



Subtopics

Tu-2000 Russian winged orbital launch vehicle. This Soviet equivalent to the US X-30 single-stage-to-orbit scramjet aerospaceplane began development in1986. Three versions were planned: a Mach 6 test vehicle, under construction at cancellation of the program in 1992; a Mach 6 intercontinental bomber; and a single-stage-to-orbit launch vehicle.

MVKS RKK Energia's proposed solution to the Soviet government's MVKS requirement for a single-stage-to-orbit reusable aerospaceplane system was this 700-metric-ton, turboramjet/rocket propulsion design. Work began in 1986 but abandoned when the Soviet Union collapsed.

Yakovlev MVKS Russian manned spaceplane. Study 1986. In reaction to US X-30 project, government decrees of 27 January and 19 July 1986 ordered development of a Soviet equivalent.

VKS-D Russian winged orbital launch vehicle. Air launched from An-225. Release conditions: Piggy-back, 275,000 kg, 38.0 m length x 24.0 m wingspan, 900 kph at 9,500 m altitude. Effective velocity gain compared to vertical launch 270 m/s.

VKS-RTO+ZhRD Russian winged orbital launch vehicle. Horizontal takeoff, delta winged, single-stage-to-orbit, launch vehicle. Mixed rocket / ramjet propulsion.

VKS-ZhRD+GPVRD Russian winged orbital launch vehicle. Horizontal takeoff, delta winged, single-stage-to-orbit, launch vehicle. Mixed rocket / scramjet propulsion.

VKS-G Russian winged orbital launch vehicle. Air launched from Kholod Mach 5 mother ship. This was a Mikoyan supersonic cargo aircraft, designed from Spiral 50-50 design. Combined-cycle turbo-ramjet engine. Release conditions: Piggy-back, 200,000 kg, Mach 5 at 25 to 30 km altitude. Effective velocity gain compared to vertical launch 1130 m/s. It was concluded that the extensive development would be required for the combination-cycle engines, resulting in an extended development schedule and high technical risk. The more conservative subsonic-launched MAKS was chosen instead.

VKS-O Russian winged orbital launch vehicle. Vertical takeoff, ballistic re-entry, single-stage-to-orbit, LOx/Kerosene/LH2 tripropellant rocket engine powered, reusable launch vehicle. 550 metric ton and 770 metric ton gross lift-off mass versions considered.

VKS-R Russian winged orbital launch vehicle. Sled launched, delta winged, single-stage-to-orbit, LOx/LH2 launch vehicle. 290 metric ton and 550 metric ton versions considered. Studied in tradeoff studies leading to MAKS. Release conditions: Piggy-back, 290,000 kg, Mach 0.5, zero altitude. Effective velocity gain compared to vertical launch 100 m/s. The wheeled sled would get the vehicle up to a velocity where the wings could provide lift, allowing lower-thrust engines to be used than in a vertical-takeoff design. This saved weight, but velocity losses during lifting flight to orbit almost cancelled the advantage, resulting in the approach being unattractive in comparison to pure vertical-launch or air-launch designs.

VKS-V Russian winged orbital launch vehicle. Vertical takeoff, delta winged, single-stage-to-orbit, LOx/Kerosene/LH2 tripropellant rocket engine powered vehicle. 550 metric ton gross liftoff mass and 1000 metric ton versions studied. Analogous to NASA's Shuttle-2 and RKK Energia's VKS.

Mikoyan 301 Russian intermediate range cruise missile. The 301 was designed as a military bomber, with a Mach 4 / 4,250 km/hr cruise capability at 25,000 to 27,000 m altitude. It was equipped with two turboramjets, had a gross takeoff mass of 80 metric tons, of which half was fuel. It may be related to the first stage of the MIGAKS two-stage vehicle.

VKS-DM Russian winged orbital launch vehicle. Air launched from Gerakl / NPO Molniya-1000 heavy-lift aircraft, catamaran layout, twin-fuselage triplane. Release conditions: Suspended load, 450,000 kg, 900 kph at 9,500 m altitude. Effective velocity gain compared to vertical launch 270 m/s.

Country: Russia.

1986 - . LV Family: VKS series. Launch Vehicle: Tu-2000.
  • In reaction to US X-30 project, government decrees of 27 January and 19 July 1986 ordered development of a Soviet equivalent. The Ministry of Defence issued technical specifications on 1 September. - . Nation: Russia.

1986 March 30 - . LV Family: VKS series. Launch Vehicle: Tu-2000.
  • Tupolev starts developement of aerospace plane - . Nation: Russia. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. In reaction to US X-30 project, Tupolev OKB asked to start work on counterpart. By 1992 mockup completed, but solving of propulsion and inlet problems intractable without access to supercomputers..

1992 December 18 - . LV Family: VKS series. Launch Vehicle: VKS-DM.
  • First flight of Molniya-1 triplane. - . Nation: Russia. Subscale proof-of-concept vehicle for Gerakl / Molniya-1000 catamaran subsonic 900 tonne aircraft design that would be used for VKS-DM spaceplane..


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