Figure 2.1. A look to the future space infrastructure envisioned by Boris Gubonov and Viktor Legostayev of the former USSR, based on having Energia operational, circa 1984.

orbit (LEO) and in geostationary orbit (GSO). So an integral part of the Russian space plan is an orbital transfer vehicle (OTV) to provide movement of satellites and resources to and from LEO. Deep space exploration and establishing a permanent Moon base was also part of the total space plan (see Chapter 6). The important part of the Russian concept is that it is based on hardware capability that they already had in use or was in development. The key difference from other space plans is that their Energia launcher is a heavy-lift system that could launch either cargo payload vehicles (up to 280 tons) or a manned glider (Buran), see Figure 2.7. Energia was to provide a fully reusable heavy-lift system (Energia) and an aerospace plane (Buran) to support the orbital station and other human crewed systems.

There was a space transportation vehicle in work at TsAGI [Plokhikh, 1983, 1989] that could be considered analogous to the US National Aerospace Plane. This would be an orbital station resource supply vehicle, with Energia the workhorse of heavy-lift capability. The goal for the Russian and Ukrainian space groups was to greatly reduce the source of space debris, that is, inoperative satellites and third (spent) stages that remain in orbit [Legostayev and Gubanov, 1985]. Their approach would be to use Buran and the aerospace plane to return non-operative satellites to Earth from LEO for remanufacture. The orbital transfer vehicle would return non-functional satellites from GSO to LEO. The unique difference is the addition of beamed power from earth via orbital relay to satellites, orbital stations

Japan space plan (circa 1988)

Meteorological satellite i r

[ Ge°synchr°n°us mftfr ] Communication broadcasting

Geostationary platform

Data relay satellite

Exploration of Mars and the planets /

Polar orbit platform

Orbital transfer vehicle

Orbital transfer vehicle

Escape trajectory

Earth observation satellite

[Polar orbit]

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