by Ilary SAPOZHNIKOV, Dr. Sc. (Tech.), Chief Designer of the Research Institute of Applied Mechanics named after Acad. V. Kuznetsov (RIAM)
Every year, on April 12, our country celebrates the significant date-the first flight of man to outer space. The space vehicle-satellite Vostok was piloted by our compatriot Major Yuri Gagarin, who in March 2014 could have turned 80. This flight became true thanks to the work of hundreds of scientific teams (plants, research institutes, design bureaus) that developed and constructed the booster and the space vehicle.
I was lucky to participate in these events. I was head of the laboratory at Research Institute 944 (RIAM) where gyroscopic devices for the controlling systems of booster R-7 and space vehicle Vostok, were developed to deliver man to the orbit of the Earth.
Before designing and constructing gyroscopic devices for booster R-7, scientists developed tools for the first combat missiles R-1, R-2, R-5, and R-12, which made it possible to develop unique gyroscopic devices in terms of accuracy and reliability.
New units were designed for this booster R-7: a gyroscope, angle-data transmitters, a programming device, locking devices, a cardan suspension. A vacuum gyrorotor with the record speed of 60,000 r/min made a good showing in terms of reliability of operation.
The sterile hi-tech production arranged at the Moscow Plant of Electromechanical Units made it possible to manufacture new gyroscopic devices. This plant contributed to Gagarin's flight by manufacturing controlling tools. Later on, similar devices were manufactured at the Saratov Plant Korpus, Ramenskoye Instrument-Making Plant, Omsk Electromechanical Plant, and other leading enterprises of the instrument-making industry. All these plants used specifications developed by specialists of the Moscow Plant of Electromechanical Units.
High accuracy and reliability of gyroscopic devices is evidenced by the fact that ... Читать далее