Roskosmos continues to report on the results of the investigation of a series of accidents with Russian booster rockets. It is clear that the problem is largely in the production marriage. What were the quality assurance system in the factories of the space industry in the Soviet era and why it is ineffective today?
That accident of the carrier rocket “Soyuz-U” carrier cargo spacecraft “Progress MC-04”, as well as the ensuing review of the engines of carrier rockets “proton-M” are directly related to flaws in the quality control system at the Voronezh mechanical factory (VMZ), was declared on Friday on air of TV channel “Russia 24”. According to the Director of the state Corporation Roscosmos Igor Komarov, the service enterprises are unable to identify the deficiencies discovered later in the engines of carrier rockets “proton”.
“You can quickly change the regulations, and the consciousness of humans”
Speaking about the situation of “Soyuz-U”, Komarov said that it was a “unique accident” as “all the processes that proceeded the crash, lasted about 40 microseconds” – with such instant development of the Russian space industry has not previously faced. “We hope that this accident will never happen again because we have worked out all possible options,” – said the head of Roscosmos.
Commented on Mosquitoes and the reason for revoking the engines for carrier rockets “proton-M”, which, however, was called in the past: instead of regular in 2015-the year was applied to other solder nozzles.
“Now the three engines on launch vehicles, and all instructions for withdrawal of carrier rockets from Baikonur has already been given, and this work will be carried out, – explained the situation the head of Roscosmos. We identified those missiles, which raised the defect”.
At the end of January at the meeting of the Russian government, and were other causes of revocation of engines for “Proton”: the culture of production and low wage employees. The Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin has described the situation at the company as “complex”, called the incident “the result of criminal negligence and the ugly attitude of some officials who will be punished.”
“The launches of “Proton”, of course, will be suspended, and new tests will take at least two months,” said the newspaper VIEW forecast of future developments the head of the Moscow space club Ivan Moiseev. In this case, the expert is convinced that the problem of Russian space technology is that in their manufacture, as half a century ago involved manual labor.
“He’s a rocket engine is complex in design and typically, a specialist, who gathered it, after a corny has no way to get to it to check reliability, – says Moiseev. – Therefore, to test these engines, there is a complex control and production activities, but the whole party still can not check, because in the tests they will all become worthless. Usually take a few models and “chase” to complete failure. If it is determined that they worked in accordance with existing regulations, give approval for the operation of the party if not the party withdraw”.
Thus, according to the head of the Moscow space club, in Soviet times, a review of batches of engines for military missiles were commonplace, but he could not remember a similar situation with space rockets.
“Again, in our space industry uses technology created by very long time, so they require large amounts of manual labor – sums up the expert. We need to introduce automation to eliminate the human factor, the Russian space Agency and understand that, but it is impossible to resolve this issue in a moment!”.
At the same time, academician of the Russian Academy of Cosmonautics. Tsiolkovsky, chief editor of the magazine “news of cosmonautics” Igor Marinin, in conversation with the newspaper OPINION was in agreement with the General Director of Roscosmos, seeing the root of the problem is in the destruction of the existing system of quality control:
“For the period of lack of money, which began in the cosmic production in the Soviet years, the industry has left many securities experts, – says the expert. – Including quality control. It was the local production control departments, and military acceptance, which did not depend on management companies, or profits they received. Everything was dispersed. And here six years ago there appeared an urgent necessity to recover it all. Somewhere it managed to do both in NPO Lavochkin, where it is vigorous new leadership, and now their booster units no one claims not. From the remaining companies the result is not so revealing”.
The belief Marinin, in the circumstances, looking in the same Voronezh specialists, and even an independent can be difficult.
For its part, the member-correspondent of the Russian Academy of cosmonautics. K. E. Tsiolkovsky Andrei Ionin believes that such grave element of the former Soviet system of quality control in the space industry, military acceptance in the current environment to restore it:
“This system was developed in the days of Queen, but the country has changed and the political and economic structure – shared with the expert his opinion with the newspaper LOOK. – We see that there is a reduction of the reliability of Russian engines, but at the same time is the reform of the industry. You have to be prepared for the fact that changes will not happen quickly. You can quickly change the regulations, and the consciousness of the people – no.”
According to Ionin, by the fact that the accident of the “Union” is not suppressed, as it was practiced in earlier times, indicates a “recovery” system.
“The most important thing that the causes are identified and analyzed, make the appropriate conclusions,” – says the expert – And nothing terrible happens, there is work.”