Russian Military Space Activity
r The experts in space and rocketry field as well as ones interested in the Russian cosmonautics know quite a well The Military Aspects of the Soviet Cosmonautics book by Maxim Tarasenko published in 1992. This book still is an unique independent Russian research in the military space programs' field. For the first time a number of the political, managerial and technical issues were covered that affected the development of the national military space programs. The book triggered the huge response. The Western analysts were discussing the book's materials for years, while we could not even look at the various magazines involved in the discussion.

In 1992 no one in Russia was courageous enough to fund The Military Aspects printing. As a result, the book was published on the author's own account and the circulation was clearly insufficient. Now the book is a rarity, and a number of experts call for the second edition.

r As the time goes, the political situation is changing. A lot of previously classified materials are appearing in the open information sources. The author have collected and analyzed the huge volumes of the information connected with the Russian space program history. As a result, the new research book in the military space area should be significantly deeper and more precious than The Military Aspects. Thus, in 1995 Maxim Tarasenko decided do not publish the second edition of the book.

Instead, as a result of the author's many years efforts, The Russian Military Space Activities book manuscript was practically finished early in 1999. This new book was prepared in the close collaboration with Vladimir Agapov systematically describing the evolution of the national space programs and military/double purpose space systems.

r The special attention was given to the space segments, i.e. the satellite constellation in the near-Earth orbits. The manuscript contains the space systems' functional classification and discusses the space infrastructure and military/double purpose satellite systems. Also, the general sequence of the military space programs' development and USSR/CIS/Russia space policy issues are considered.

The manuscript's first part discusses the general issues of the military usage of outer space, including:

  • USSR/Russia space activity evolution and management from the beginning of the national rocket program in 1946 through 1999;
  • Main military tasks that could be accomplished by the space means, including the corresponding technical requirements and the international legal issues;
  • Options for the independent identification of the spacecraft tasks based on the results of the objective external observations;
  • Overview of the ground infrastructure supporting the space launches and orbiting spacecraft control;
  • Evolution, technical and operational data of the USSR/Russian launch vehicles.

The second part discusses the particular space complexes. Each chapter deals with the systems resolving the specific task, including the military communications, navigation, the combat space systems, early warning systems, etc. The complexes' description is followed by the comprehensive launch histories and the systems' usage statistics.

For the time being, the works are underway to prepare The Russian Military Space Activity book for the publishing. Ones, who would be interested to help with the edition, are thankfully invited to contact Alisa Boulgakova Tarasenko.
Guest book Alisa Boulgakova-Tarasenko