Obninsk. space history

Already more than 60 spacecraft with parts of Obninsk “Technology” have been sent into orbit. And this number is growing every year. In space issues, the science city company occupies a special place among not only Russian but also foreign companies

In a few days, the whole country will celebrate Cosmonautics Day. For Obninsk, this is not just a memorable date, but a professional vacation. Science city is strongly connected to space. Devices with components from ORPE Technologiya have conquered outer space for more than half a century. And what is important both for the country and for the city, they provide Russia’s technical leadership in this most advanced industry.

The list of “space achievements” for “Technology” is huge. We will only focus on a few of them – those with which the world’s science and technology are equal.

Space History “Technology”

In the space area ONPP “Technology” them. AG Romashina has always “thundered” all over the world. The company handled it already in the 70s – for example, it delivered composite material to the Venera station. But the turning point can be called the beginning of the 80s – the company formulated the task of creating components for the Buran spacecraft.
Then the Soviet Union once again advanced in a dispute with the United States over dominance in outer space. The reusable spacecraft Buran was launched from Baikonur, where every tenth kilogram of “dry” weight was created in Obninsk “Technology”. This fact is probably known to every Obninsk schoolboy. And this is a special reason for the pride of the townspeople – Obninsk has become part of the world’s space history.
The change of epochs closed that space project – the embodiment of unique technical solutions. But the experience gained during the creation of Buran gave impetus to new ideas. He opened new horizons for global space science and technology for Tekhnologiya.

Hundreds of gigabytes of valuable data

This year, the Russians will be able to see many interesting astronomical phenomena – eclipses, supermoon, meteor showers. So on the territory of our country on October 25, it will be possible to observe a partial solar eclipse, and on November 8 – a total lunar eclipse. And all these phases will be photographed by the domestic satellite Aist-2D.

The unit has been in orbit for several years. The satellite is equipped with powerful optical-electronic equipment, which makes it possible to take detailed images of the earth’s surface. For example, the device looks “perfect” if it burns. This information is extremely important for the Ministry of Emergencies in Russia, the Ministry of Forestry, Environmental Protection and Nature Management.

But to be able to receive uninterrupted images from space, the electronics on the satellite require reliable sources of electrical energy – such are solar panels. Each of these batteries is a complex structure of photocells fixed on a rigid frame. In this case, the frame itself must have high strength with large dimensions. The solution was found on “Technology”.

“In our company, a set of design solutions, technical and analytical solutions have been developed to create a fundamentally new design, which is a super-light carbon fiber frame of an integrated type – where photoelectric converters are installed,” explains Yaroslav Khmelnitsky, Assistant to the Deputy Director General of ONPP Tekhnologiya for scientific and production activities.

Yaroslav Khmelnitsky: “Many of our technologies have no comparable analogues in the world”

And our frame is the lightest in the world when it comes to specific weight. Weight – only 480 g per square meter (and in the world such structures weigh at least 1500 g and this is considered an excellent result!). The whole secret lies in the use of carbon materials and our own technology. ”

When building a spacecraft, you have to solve many problems, and almost every solution is unique. For example, how to even out the temperature difference between the satellite’s surfaces, placed on the sunny side (+260 degrees) and turn in the opposite direction (-100 degrees). It turns out that inside the unit, the equipment is on one side of the “oven”, and on the opposite side – in space cold! Obninsk researchers and engineers solve similar problems. As an example: a Russian satellite from the Canopus family is in orbit, whose task is to monitor natural situations on the planet. For him, Technologiya produced thermal control panels that are unique in terms of engineering and design solutions and technical properties. The knowledge of space offered by Technologiya has no equivalent in the world.

Solar panels from Technologiya are the lightest and strongest in the world

“If the unit’s lifespan was previously estimated at about five years – due to severe temperature changes, the units failed, so with the new thermal control system, the lifespan increased to 12-15 years,” explains Khmelnitsky. – In previous generations of satellites, all units were placed in a container, in the shell in which the coolant was pumped. But the slightest pressure drop or penetration of a foreign body – and the coolant “volatile”, and the units overheated. The system from “Technology” is a panel, inside which pipes with coolant are built. In addition, this panel is at the same time also the body of the satellite and a platform for mounting devices, under which there are pipes. Heating has occurred – the coolant boils and under steam pressure “passes” through the channel to the condensation zone and then returns through the capillaries in this tube in the form of a liquid to the heating zone under the unit. This is how the temperature of the unit is regulated. It does not need motors, pumps – an absolutely passive system. And the panels themselves are made in such a way that the device’s installation accuracy is 0.05 mm. These are excellent options. For comparison: the thickness of a human hair is 0.07 mm.

But the technology for the production of thermal control panels and solar cell frames is constantly improving at the company. The process is going well – the work from our researchers and engineers regularly receives the highest marks. So last year, Yaroslav Khmelnitsky was named “Engineer of the Year” in the “Aviation and Cosmonautics” nomination. Together with the team, he improved both the manufacturing process and the quality of the solar panels. The result of the work – it was possible to reduce the complexity of production by 50% and weight properties – by 37%.

Topped the whole world by 7 years

The other day, the head of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Alexander Sergeev, during a working meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin reported on domestic space achievements. Among them is the launch of the Arctic-M satellite into orbit, which provides 24-hour surveillance of Russia’s northern territory and the Arctic Ocean.

“Russia is seven years ahead of Europe, the United States and Japan by launching the first Arctic-M meteorological satellite into a very elliptical orbit in 2021,” said the head of the Russian Academy of Sciences. – It’s very important. No one has such satellites now.

A special role in the fact that such a strategically important satellite works smoothly belongs to Technology.

An innovative thermal control system manufactured in Obninsk is responsible for the temperature regime for the Arktika-M spacecraft. “We have manufactured a new generation of thermal control system radiators for the Arktika-M spacecraft. The unit has improved heat transfer properties. But more importantly, it is much lighter than its counterparts,” says Khmelnitsky. – All this ensures efficient operation of the equipment. Arktika-M today has no comparable analogues in the world. “

Andrey Silkin congratulates Yaroslav Khmelnitsky entitled “Engineer of the Year”

The traditional design of the radiator is a composition with shells of aluminum alloy. Technology specialists, together with representatives of NPO Lavochkin, suggested that the housing for the Arctic M radiator should be made of heat-conducting carbon fiber. This made it possible to reduce the weight of the radiator without compromising the reliability of the design by more than 15%. “

The launch of the second such satellite is expected in 2023.

Andrey Silkin,
Director General of ONPP “Technology”:
“The space industry is the embodiment of all the most advanced that has been created by mankind.” Technology “has long won and firmly holds the position of a leading developer and manufacturer in this field. As early as the late 70’s, our composite components were included in the Venera-15 space stations and Venera-16, the only ones that transmitted data from this planet at that time. The reusable spacecraft Buran is a milestone in the history of our cosmonautics and technology. Each event is a springboard for further development. And we continue to improve technology. not a single domestic space project will succeed without our participation. It is equally important that in the company all this development is also used in the production of products for other industries – aviation, shipbuilding, transport … “


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