Soyuz 7K-T

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Soyuz 7K-T or "ferry"
Soyuz 7K-T 2-seats drawing.svg
Upgraded Soyuz 7K-T version capable of carrying 2 cosmonauts with Sokol space suits (after the Soyuz 11 accident).
Manufacturer Korolev
Country of origin  Soviet Union
Operator Soviet space program
Applications Carry two cosmonauts to orbit and back
Regime Low Earth orbit
Status Out of service
Launched 30
First launch Kosmos 496, 1972
Last launch Soyuz 40, 1981
Related spacecraft
Derived from Soyuz 7K-OKS
Derivatives Soyuz 7K-TM (ASTP)
Soyuz-T (successor)
Salyut 1-type Soyuz 7K-T/A9 for 3 cosmonauts without space suits. This was the Original Soyuz 7K-OK upgraded for the military Almaz space stations. The "probe-and-drogue" docking system (left) permitted internal transfer of cosmonauts from the Soyuz to the station.

The second generation of the Soyuz spacecraft, the Soyuz Ferry or Soyuz 7K-T, comprised Soyuz 12 through Soyuz 40 (1973-1981). In the wake of the Soyuz 11 tragedy, the spacecraft was redesigned to accommodate two cosmonauts who would wear pressure suits at all times during launch, docking, undocking, and reentry. The place of the third cosmonaut was taken by extra life-support systems. Finally, the 7K-T, being intended purely as a space station ferry, had no solar panels, instead sporting two large whip antennas in their place. As a result, it relied on batteries which only provided enough power for two days of standalone flight. The idea was that the Soyuz would recharge while docked with a Salyut space station, but in the event of a docking or other mission failure (which ended up happening on several occasions), the crew was forced to power off everything except communications and life support systems until they could reenter.

In addition, the standalone flights of Soyuz 13, Soyuz 16, Soyuz 19, and Soyuz 22 used a variant of the 7K-T with solar panels, and in the case of 13 and 22, special camera apparatus in place of the docking mechanism. A large Orion 2 astrophysical camera for imaging the sky and Earth were used on the former and an MKF-6 Zeiss camera on the latter.

Another modification was the Soyuz 7K-T/A9 used for the flights to the military Almaz space station. This featured the ability to remote control the space station and a new parachute system and other still classified and unknown changes.


Unmanned tests

External links