Site update log

Site map

Advertise

Testimonials

About this site

About the author

Mailbox

SUPPORT THIS SITE!


Acknowledgement:

The editor would like to thank Michael Lutomski and his staff at Johnson Space Center, Houston, for corrections.

The first landing of Apollo astronauts on the lunar surface in July 1969, marked a watershed for both US and Soviet space programs. In the US, with Soviets "beaten" in the race to the Moon, the Apollo program suddenly became a "dead end colossus" in the eyes of appropriation committees. After six successful lunar expeditions, the Apollo program was terminated in 1972.

Back in the USSR, political inertia continued dragging forward the ill-fated lunar program, however, leaders of the space industry as well as their patrons in the Kremlin had already started looking elsewhere for future goals.

Within TsKBEM, the primary developer of the Soviet manned spacecraft, a group of top engineers "conspired" to initiate a project of the space station, which could be accomplished quickly and economically. The new program would employ the hardware, which had already been developed by a rival design organization led by Vladimir Chelomei. Since mid-1960s, Chelomei's collective worked on a military orbital complex designated Almaz ("Diamond"). However, technical problems and political intrigue stalled the project.

By December 1969, Dimity Ustinov, aka Uncle Mitya, a powerful Kremlin bureaucrat supervising the rocket industry, signed off on the project. The head of TsKBEM Vasiliy Mishin, despite his opposition to the idea, had no choice but squeeze another assignment in the already ambitious list of projects led by his organization.

In parallel, Vladimir Chelomei continued the development of the Almaz, which would be used exclusively for military goals.

In record short time, TsKBM group led by Yuri Semenov developed the space station designated DOS-7K. The station used the body from the Almaz project and modified systems from the Soyuz spacecraft. The crews would visit the station onboard a new version of the Soyuz spacecraft designated 7K-T.

On Feb. 9, 1970, the Soviet government officially endorsed the program, under code DOS-7K. As promised, at the beginning of 1971, DOS-1, the world's first space station was ready for launch.

Soviet and Russian space station launches:

Official name
Type
Developer
Launch date
Crews onboard
Deorbited
Notes
Salyut-1 (Zarya)
DOS-1
TsKBEM
April 19, 1971
1
Oct. 11, 1971
The first crew docked but was not able to enter the station.
-
DOS-2
TsKBEM
July 29, 1972
-
-
Did not reach the orbit due to the Proton launcher failure.
Salyut-2
OPS-1 (Almaz)
TsKBM
April 3, 1973
-
May 28, 1973
Depressurized after being hit by debris from the exploded Proton upper stage.
Kosmos-557
DOS-3
TsKBEM
May 11, 1973
-
May 1973
A control system failure caused the drainage of the onboard fuel.
Salyut-3
OPS-2 (Almaz)
TsKBM
June 25, 1974
1
-
-
Salyut-4
DOS-4
TsKBEM
Dec. 26, 1974
2
Feb. 3, 1977
-
Salyut-5
OPS-3 (Almaz)
TsKBM
June 22, 1976
2
August 8, 1977
-
Salyut-6
DOS-5
NPO Energia
Sept. 29, 1977
16
July 28, 1982
The first crew was not able to dock with the station
Salyut-7
DOS-5-2
NPO Energia
April 19 , 1982
9
Feb. 7, 1991
-
Mir
DOS-7
NPO Energia
Feb. 20, 1986
-
Core module of the Mir space station
Zvezda
DOS-8
RKK Energia
July 12, 2000
-
In orbit
A service module for the International Space Station, ISS

Soviet launches related to space station projects and solo Soyuz flights in 1971-1985:


Official name
Industrial designation
Launch date
Landing date
Crew
Notes
Salyut-1
DOS-1
April 19, 1971
-
-
-
Soyuz-10
7K-T
April 22, 1971
April 24, 1971
V. Shatalov, A. Yeliseyev, N. Rukavishnikov
Docked to Salyut-1 on April 24. Failed to open the hatch in the station
Soyuz-11
7K-T
June 6, 1971
June 29, 1971
G. Dobrovolskiy, V. Volkov, V. Patsaev
Docked to Salyut-1 from June 7 to June 29. The crew is killed due to depressurization during landing.
Kosmos-496
7K-T
June 26, 1972
July 1, 1972
-
7K-T test flight
-
DOS-2
July 29, 1972
-
-
Did not reach the orbit due to the Proton launcher failure
Salyut-2
OPS-1 (Almaz)
April 3, 1973
-
-
Depressurized after being hit by debris from the exploded Proton upper stage
Kosmos-557
DOS-3
May 11, 1973
-
-
Control system failure caused drainage of the onboard fuel
Kosmos-573
7K-T
June 15, 1973
June 17, 1973
-
7K-T test flight
Soyuz-12
7K-T
Sept. 27, 1973
Sept. 29, 1973
V. Lazarev, O. Makarov
7K-T test flight
Kosmos-613
7K-T
Nov. 30, 1973
Jan. 28, 1974
-
7K-T test flight
Soyuz-13
7K-T
Dec. 18, 1973
Dec. 26, 1973
P. Klimuk, V. Lebedev
-
Kosmos-638
7K-TM No. 71
April 3, 1974
April 13, 1974
-
Soyuz-Apollo test flight
Kosmos-656
7K-T No. 61
May 27, 1974
May 29, 1974
-
7K-T test version for the Almaz project
Salyut-3
OPS-2 (Almaz)
June 25, 1974
-
Soyuz-14
7K-T
July 3, 1974
July 19, 1974
P. Popovich, Y. Artyukhin
Docked to Salyut-3 from July 5 to July 19
Kosmos-670
7K-S No. 1L
Aug. 6, 1974
Aug. 8, 1974
-
7K-S/ST (Soyuz T) test flight
Kosmos-672
7K-TM No. 72
Aug. 12, 1974
Aug. 18, 1974
-
Soyuz-Apollo test flight
Soyuz-15
7K-T
August 26, 1974
August 28, 1974
G. Sarafanov, L. Demin
Failed to dock with Salyut-3 due to Igla system failure
Soyuz-16
7K-TM
Dec. 2, 1974
Dec. 8, 1974
A Philipchenko, N. Rukavishnikov
Soyuz-Apollo test flight
Salyut-4
DOS-4
Dec. 26, 1974
-
-
-
Soyuz-17
7K-T
Jan. 11, 1975
Feb. 9, 1975
A. Gubarev, G. Grechko
Docked to Salyut-4 from Jan. 12 to Feb. 9, 1975
Soyuz-18-1
7K-T
April 5, 1975
-
V. Lazarev, O. Makarov
Suborbital flight due to third stage failure
Soyuz-18
7K-T
May 24, 1975
July 26, 1975
P. Klimuk, V. Sevastyanov
Docked to Salyut-4 from May 26 to July 26.
Soyuz-19
7K-TM
July 15, 1975
July 21, 1975
A. Leonov, V. Kubasov
Docked with Apollo July 17-19.
Kosmos-772
7K-S No. 2L
Sept. 29, 1975
Oct. 2, 1975
-
7K-S/ST (Soyuz T) test flight
Soyuz-20
7K-T
Nov. 17, 1975
Feb. 16, 1976
-
Docked to Salyut-4 from Nov. 19, 1975 to Feb. 16, 1976
Salyut-5
OPS-3 (Almaz)
June 22, 1976
-
-
-
Soyuz-21
7K-T
July 6, 1976
Aug 24, 1976
B. Volunov, V Zholobov
Docked to Salyut-5 from July 7 to August 24.
Soyuz-22
7K-T
Sept. 15, 1976
Sept. 23, 1976
V. Bukovsky, V. Aksenov
Solo remote-sensing flight at 64.7-degree orbit
Soyuz-23
7K-T
Oct. 14, 1976
Oct. 16, 1976
V. Zudov, V. Rozhdestvenskiy
Failed to dock to Salyut-5. Splashed down in Lake Tengiz
Kosmos-869
7K-S No. 3L
Nov. 29, 1976
Dec. 17, 1976
-
7K-S/ST (Soyuz T) test flight
Soyuz-24
7K-T
Feb. 7, 1977
Feb. 25, 1977
V. Gorbatko, Yu. Glazkov
Docked to Salyut-5 from Feb. 8 to Feb. 25
Kosmos-929
July 17, 1977
Aug. 16, 1977 (unmanned capsule)
-
TKS test. Deorbited Feb. 2, 1978
Salyut-6
DOS-5
Sept. 29, 1977
-
-
-
Soyuz-25
7K-T
Oct. 9, 1977
Oct. 11, 1977
V. Kovalenok, V. Ryumin
Failed to dock to Salyut-6
Soyuz-26
7K-T
Dec. 10, 1977
Jan. 16, 1978
Y. Romanenko, G. Grechko (land on Soyuz-27)
Docked to Salyut-6 from Dec. 11 to Jan. 16.
Soyuz-27
7K-T
Jan. 10, 1978
March 16, 1978
V. Dzhanibekov, O. Makarov (landed on Soyuz-26)
Docked to Salyut-6 from Jan. 11 to March 16.
Progress-1
-
Jan. 20, 1978
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from Jan. 22 to Feb. 6. Deorbited Feb. 8
Soyuz-28
7K-T
March 3, 1978
March 10, 1978
A. Gubarev, V. Remek
Docked to Salyut-6 from March 3 to March 10.
Kosmos-1001
7K-ST No. 4L
April 4, 1978
April 15, 1978
-
7K-ST (Soyuz T) test flight
Soyuz-29
7K-T
June 15, 1978
Sept. 3, 1978
V. Kovalenok, A. Ivanchekov (landed on Soyuz 31)
Docked to Salyut-6 from June 16 to Sept 3.
Soyuz-30
7K-T
June 27, 1978
July 5, 1978
P. Klimuk, M. Germashevskiy
Docked to Salyut-6 from June 28 to July 5.
Progress-2
-
July 7, 1978
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from July 9 to Aug. 2. Deorbited Aug. 4
Progress-3
-
Aug. 8, 1978
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from Aug. 10 to Aug. 21. Deorbited Aug. 24
Soyuz-31
7K-T
Aug. 26, 1978
Nov. 2, 1978
V. Bykovskiy, S. Yen (landed on Soyuz 29)
Docked to Salyut-6 from Aug 27 to Nov. 11. Redocked Sept. 7
Progress-4
-
Oct. 4, 1978
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from Oct. 6 to Oct. 24. Deorbited Oct. 26
Kosmos-1074
7K-ST No. 5L
Jna. 31, 1979
April 1, 1979
-
7K-ST (Soyuz T) test flight
Soyuz-32
7K-T
Feb. 25, 1979
June 13, 1979
V. Lyakhov, V. Ryumin (landed on Soyuz 34)
Docked to Salyut-6 from Feb. 26 to June 13. Landed unmanned
Progress-5
-
March 12, 1979
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from March 14 to April 3. Deorbited April 5
Soyuz-33
7K-T
April 10, 1979
April 12, 1979
N. Rukavishnikov, G. Ivanov
Failed to dock with Salyut-6
Progress-6
-
May 13, 1979
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from May 15 to June 8. Deorbited June 10
Soyuz-34
7K-T
June 6, 1979
Aug. 19, 1979
Launched unmanned
Docked to Salyut-6 from June 7 to Aug. 19. Redocked June 14
Progress-7
-
June 28, 1979
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from June 30 to July 18. Deorbited July 20
Soyuz T
7K-ST No. 6L
Dec. 16, 1979
March 26, 1980
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from Dec. 19 to March 24.
Progress-8
-
March 27, 1980
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from March 29 to April 25. Deorbited April 26
Soyuz-35
7K-T
April 9, 1980
June 3, 1980
L. Popov, V. Ryumin (landed on Soyuz 37)
Docked to Salyut-6 from April 10 to June 3.
Progress-9
-
April 27, 1980
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from April 29 to May 20. Deorbited May 22
Soyuz-36
7K-T
May 26, 1980
July 31, 1980
V. Kubasov, B. Farkash (landed on Soyuz 35)
Docked to Salyut-6 from May 27 to July 31. Redocked on June 4.
Soyuz T-2
7K-ST No. 7L
June 5, 1980
June 9, 1980
Y. Malushev, V. Aksenov
Docked to Salyut-6 from June 6 to June 9.
Progress-10
-
June 29, 1980
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from July 1 to July 18. Deorbited July 19
Soyuz-37
7K-T
July 23, 1980
Oct. 11, 1980
V. Gorbatko, Fam Tuan (landed on Soyuz 36)
Docked to Salyut-6 from July 24 to Oct. 11. (Redocked on Aug. 1)
Soyuz-38
7K-T
Sept. 18, 1980
Sept. 26, 1980
Y. Romanenko, Tomayo Mendes
Docked to Salyut-6 from Sept. 19 to Sept. 26.
Progress-11
-
Sept. 28, 1980
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from Sept. 30 to Dec. 9. Deorbited Dec. 11
Soyuz T-3
7K-ST No. 8L
Nov. 27, 1980
Dec. 12, 1980
L. Kizim, O. Makarov, G. Strekalov
Docked to Salyut-6 from Nov. 28 to Dec. 12.
Progress-12
-
Jan. 24, 1981
-
-
Docked to Salyut-6 from Jan. 26 to March 19. Deorbited March 21
Soyuz T-4
-
March 12, 1981
May 26, 1981
V. Kovalenok, V. Savinukh
Docked to Salyut-6 from March 13 to May 26.
Soyuz-39
7K-T
March 22, 1981
March 30, 1981
V. Dzhanibekov, Zh Gurragcha
Docked to Salyut-6 from March 23 to March 30.
Kosmos-1267
April 21, 1981
May 24, 1981 (unmanned capsule)
-
Docked to Salyut-7 June 19. Deorbited with Salyut-6
Soyuz-40
7K-T
May 14, 1981
May 22, 1981
L. Popov, D. Prunariy
Docked to Salyut-6 from May 15 to May 22.
Salyut-7
DOS-5-2
April 19, 1982
-
Soyuz T-5
7K-ST
May 13, 1982
Aug. 27, 1982
A. Berezevoi, V. Lebedev (returned on Soyuz-T7)
Docked to Salyut-7 from May 14 to Aug. 27.
Progress-13
-
May 23, 1982
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from May 25 to June 4. Deorbited June 6
Soyuz T-6
7K-ST
June 24, 1982
July 2, 1982
V. Dzhanibekov, A. Ivanchenkov, J. Lou Kretien
Docked to Salyut-7 from June 25 to July 2.
Progress-14
-
July 10, 1982
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from July 12 to Aug. 11. Deorbited Aug. 13
Soyuz T-7
7K-ST
Aug. 19 , 1982
Dec. 12, 1982
L. Popov, A. Serebrov, S. Savitskaya (landed on Soyuz T-5
Docked to Salyut-7 from Aug. 20 to Dec. 10
Progress-15
-
Sept. 18, 1982
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from Sept. 20 to Oct. 14. Deorbited Oct. 16
Progress-16
-
Oct. 31, 1982
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from Nov. 2 to Dec. 13. Deorbited Dec. 14
Kosmos-1443
March 2, 1983
Aug. 23, 1983 (unmanned capsule)
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from March 10 Aug. 14. Deorbited Sept. 19
Soyuz T-8
7K-ST
April 20, 1983
April 22, 1983
V. Titov, A. Serebrov, G. Strekalov
Failed to dock to Salyut-7.
Soyuz T-9
7K-ST
June 27, 1983
Nov. 23, 1983
V. Lyakhov, A. Alexandrov
Docked to Salyut-7 from June 28 to Nov. 23
Progress-17
-
Aug. 17, 1983
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from Aug. 19 to Sept. 17. Deorbited Sept. 18
Soyuz T
7K-ST No. 16L
Sept. 27, 1983
-
V. Titov, G. Strekalov
Launch vehicle exploded on the pad. Escape system saved the crew
Progress-18
-
Oct. 20, 1983
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from Oct. 22 to Nov. 13. Deorbited Nov. 16
Soyuz T-10
7K-ST
Feb. 8, 1984
April 11, 1984
L. Kizim, V. Soloviev, O. Atkov
Docked to Salyut-7 from Feb. 9 to April 11
Progress-19
-
Feb. 20, 1984
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from Feb. 22 to March 31. Deorbited April 1
Soyuz T-11
-
April 3, 1984
Oct. 2, 1984
Y. Malushev, G. Strekalov, R. Sharma (landed on Soyuz T-10)
Docked to Salyut-7 from April 4 to - Oct. 2 Redocked on April 13
Progress-20
-
April 15, 1984
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from April 17 to May 6. Deorbited May 7
Progress-21
-
May 7, 1984
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from May 10 to May 26. Deorbited May 26
Progress-22
-
May 28, 1984
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from May 30 to July 15. Deorbited July 15
Soyuz T-12
-
July 17, 1984
July 29, 1984
V. Dzhanibekov, S. Savitskaya, I. Volk
Docked to Salyut-7 from July 18 to July 29
Progress-23
-
Aug. 14, 1984
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from Aug. 16 to Aug. 26. Deorbited Aug. 28
Soyuz T-13
-
June 6, 1985
Sept. 26, 1985
V. Dzhanibekov, V. Savinykh (landed on Soyuz T-14)
Docked to Salyut-7 from June 8 to Sept. 25
Progress-24
-
June 21, 1985
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from June 23 to July 15. Deorbited July 15
Kosmos-1669
-
July 16, 1985
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 from July 18 Aug. 28. Deorbited Aug. 30
Soyuz T-14
-
Sept. 17, 1985
Nov. 21, 1985
V. Vasyutin, G. Grechko, (landed on Soyuz T-13) A. Volkov
Docked to Salyut-7 from Sept. 18 to Nov. 21
Kosmos-1686
Sept. 27, 1985
-
-
Docked to Salyut-7 on Oct. 2, 1985

This page is compiled and maintained by Anatoly Zak

Last update: February 22, 2014

All rights reserved

Book

MEDIA ARCHIVE

Concept

An early Soviet concept of a space station formulated at TsNIIMash research institute.


Soviet officials inspect a full-scale mockup of the DOS-7K (Salyut) space station, circa 1970. Credit: Khrunichev


The first-generation Salyut during the assembly. Credit: RKK Energia


The Salyut-1 space station in orbit. Credit: RKK Energia


After the loss of the first crew of the Salyut space station during landing, the pressure suits (right) were introduced for launch, landing and docking operations. Standard Pinguin suits (left) were worn during the work inside the station. Copyright © 2001 Anatoly Zak


The first generation Salyut. Credit: Anatoly Zak


Scale model of the second-generation Salyut space station, which included independently guided solar arrays. Copyright © 2001 Anatoly Zak


Cutaway view of a working compartment of the second generation Salyut space station. Copyright © 2001 Anatoly Zak


The US Apollo and the Soviet Soyuz spacecraft docked for eternity in the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. Copyright © 2002 Anatoly Zak


A 3rd generation Salyut space station, differed from its predecessors by a second docking port and a capability to be refueled in orbit from Progress cargo ships. Copyright © 2001 Anatoly Zak


A scale model of the 3rd generation Salyut space station docked with two transport spacecraft -- the Progress cargo ship and the Soyuz manned spacecraft. Apparently, no photos of such configuration exist. Copyright © 2001 Anatoly Zak


Orlan

The Orlan spacesuit, which had been used onboard the Mir space station. Copyright © 2001 Anatoly Zak


To negate influence of weightlessness after long-duration flights, the Salyut crewmembers were wearing Chibis suits at the end of their missions. The Chibis suits create low-pressure in the lower parts of the body, driving more blood toward legs as caused by gravity on Earth. Copyright © 2001 Anatoly Zak