The first stage of the rocket developed by the Ukrainian KB “southern”.
This is the first large-scale success of the rocket for a year and a half after its explosion 28 October 2014 a few seconds after launch.
A missile designed to deliver space station cargo weighing up to 6,800 kg, developed by the American company Orbital Sciences Corporation. A first stage for Antares created Ukrainians.
The basic design was developed in KB “southern” and manufactured at the southern machine-building plant in the city of Dnepr. To create the stage also helped the Ukrainian company “Hartron-ARKOS (Kharkov, Ukraine), Khartron-YUKOM (Zaporizhya), announcement of annual”, “rapid” (Chernihiv) and others. In addition to manufacturing stage, Ukrainians also actively participated in testing in the United States. The last half of the year experts were engaged in the modernization of missiles. The fact that the accident rocket in 2014 occurred due to a failure in the Russian-American engine AJ-26 (Aerojet Rocketdyne). Recall, this unit was developed in 60-70 years in the Soviet Union, was produced in Russia under the name NK-33 for the lunar program and has passed a technological modification in the United States, called the AJ-26.
Ukrainian engineers had to change the stage of the rocket so that it could work completely different engine, not intended for ready-made designs. We are talking about the RD-181 Russian production. “We had to partially disassemble the finished product, to Refine them and to collect so that they can work with the new engine. Such work is extremely difficult and painstaking it can be mapped to a heart transplant,” – said the chief designer of the direction in the KB “South” Maxim Degtyarev, .
Successfully conducted tests showed that the task was achieved. The next step will be the test launch of the carrier rocket. “For Ukraine, this is definitely a momentous occasion. She stage – fuel tanks, oxidizer tanks, gauges, piping and other auxiliary equipment – must work as a unit with the propulsion system. If the test was successful – it says that all components of the rocket stage media interact as expected of them”, – says the founder of the technology accelerator space simpera.space Andrew Runners. The first launch of the modified missile is scheduled for mid-July 2016.
We will remind, 29 Oct 2014 Antares rocket exploded a few seconds after the start due to a problem in the engine. The accident led to temporary suspension of use of these missiles and launch vehicles Cygnus.