Rocket R-1D on launch pad
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To measure physical parameters in the upper rarefied atmosphere,
rocket R-1A was already provided with the instrumentation
system conventionally named "FIAN-1". The first geophysical
experiments have been accommodated. The obtained data served
as a basis to work out a large geophysical research program
pursuing interests of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR
and designers of modified rocket R-1 intended for that purpose
(R-1B, R-1V, R-1D, R-1E).
All four launches of rocket R-1B that took place in July
- August 1951 were vertical with one launch failed. The
rocket carried experimental animals accommodated in a special
pressurized compartment to study their behavior in space
environment. On July 1951 dogs Dezik and Tsygan were the
first to successfully fly on rocket R-1B.
Rocket-R1V differed from R-1B only in that the FIAN-1 equipment
was replaced by a parachute system to recover the rocket
body. In total, two launches have been carried out in July
- August 1951.
Unlike rockets R-1B and R-1V where experimental animals
had to be returned in a pressurized compartment on a parachute,
on rocket R-1D each of the two dogs was catapulted in a
space suit mounted on a special cradle provided with a parachute
system and a Life Support System. In addition, on rocket
R-1D, instead of the FIAN-1 compartment, science hardware
was accommodated to study vertical distribution of ionization
density in ionosphere and propagation of super long waves
in atmosphere and space. All three launches of rocket R-1D
that took place in June-August 1951 were successful.
Through launches of rocket R-1E one more attempt has been
made to solve the rocket body recovery problem. For this
purpose, three powder boosters were provided on the warhead
to impart a separation velocity of about 12 m/s to it. However,
this was not sufficient enough. A new constructive option
of the rocket body return system implied the use of a pyro
gun that had not only to activate pilot chutes, but also
simultaneously release parachute packages containing main
cupolas. Totally, from January 1955 to April 1956, six launches
have been carried out of which four were successful.