Spacecraft design efforts started at Yuzhnoye in 1960. Working in the all-new field required OKB-586 to work on many engineering and organizational issues such as exploration of the new field, industrial engineering, creation of a partnership of designers. The designers were tasked with making the first steps in space exploration and gaining a footing in spacecraft design with high technologies.

Exploratory development spacecraft, DS-1, DS-А1, DS-K8, DS-P1, DS-MG, DS-MT, used the common bus and payload configuration as much as practicable. The sealed spacecraft case was filled with nitrogen. A framework to carry sets of storage batteries, radio complex, control equipment, and research equipment electronic units was installed inside the spacecraft.

The mass of the first spacecraft ranged from 47 (DS-2) to 321 kg (DS-MO). The active in-orbit life of spacecraft, except for the DS-P1, depended on storage battery capabilities and reached 10-15 days.

Spacecraft flight was controlled and scientific data were received by the mission control center of the Ministry of Defense of the Soviet Union.

Fifteen successful launches of eight spacecraft types were conducted in all.

DS-1

Mass, kg

165
Launch vehicle 63С1
Main experimental results The first OKB-586 spacecraft, which laid the foundation for further development of the area.
Orbited on Two attempts to launch the DS-1 spacecraft late in 1961 were unsuccessful due to launch vehicle failure.

 

DS-2

Mass, kg

47
Active life, days 50
Main experimental results Large-scale heterogeneous formations in ionosphere were detected and their range was found for the first time; radio refraction angles were defined.
Orbited on

16 March 1962

DS-A1

Mass, kg

220
Active life, days 8
Main experimental results The first satellite in a series that detected areas of high-altitude nuclear explosions and determined the explosive yield.
Orbited on

20 Oсtober 1962

DS-MG

Mass, kg

285
Active life, days 12
Engineering solutions

First use of a detachable heat exchanger in the temperature control system.

Main experimental results

An extensive magnetic survey program was implemented, with fine-mesh coverage of 75% of the Earth surface. These data were used for development of an international analytical geomagnetic field model. The value of the survey was mentioned at a session of the Committee on Space Research under the International Council of Scientific Unions in 1964 in Italy.

Orbited on

6 June 1964

DS-MT

Mass, kg

247
Active life, days 15
Engineering solutions

A detachable heat exchanger with radiant surface was used in the temperature control system.

Main experimental results

Three winter meteor showers were studied (Geminids, Ursids, Quadrantids);

a number of meteor-spacecraft collisions were registered.

Orbited on

21 March 1967

DS-MO

Mass, kg

321
Active life, days 10
Engineering solutions

Aerodynamic stabilization was implemented to orient a spacecraft in space.

Main experimental results

DS-МО experimentation results allowed a successful completion of a comprehensive program to study back solar radiation in ultraviolet, visible, and infrared regions and Earth self-radiation in infrared region. The results were used to develop practices for determination of some parameters of atmosphere, clouds, and Earth surface; the practices were recommended for application in meteorology.

Orbited on

30 June 1962

DS-P1

Mass, kg

240
Active life, days 60
Engineering solutions

Dodecahedron-shaped solar batteries; calibrated spherical reflector transparent for light-region waves and non-transparent for decimetric and metric radio waves.

Main experimental results

A space platform was designed and tested in full-scale environment for a variety of ballistic missile defense, antisatellite defense, and anti-aircraft applications.

Orbited on

18 August 1962

DS-K8

Mass, kg

235
Active life, days 10-12
Main experimental results

Radar station signals were measured; special-purpose onboard instrumentation requirements were updated; meteoric particle impacts were registered.

Orbited on

18 March 1964

 

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