16 Russian Buran Abroad

Russian Buran Abroad

Posted on November 8, 2011 by

Do you remember the biggest fail of MAKS show this year? Yes, it was connected to Buran. This one is located in a specially built aircraft shed in a museum in Speyer, Germany. Let’s see how it’s treated abroad.

It’s not the Buran which made its first and only flight in 1988. That one was destroyed in 2002, when the roof of the airplane shed where it was standing, collapsed.

Soviet engineers created several models of Buran but only one of them was able to fly.

This shuttle made 25 flights and it can be operated both manually and automatically .

Thanks to the owner of the museum in Speyer, this Buran didn’t end up its life at a scrap yard.

A cargo compartment.

The cabin.



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16 Responses to “Russian Buran Abroad”

  1. Peter says:

    Some other pictures about this shuttle can be found here: http://www.buran-energia.com/blog/category/bourane/buran-ok-201/

  2. helmut says:

    They have also a Concorde and a Tupolev Aircraft. Very interesting museum.

  3. George Johnson says:

    Those jet engines look so out of place and phony.

  4. Hirsh says:

    I’m not impressed. Why the soviets always had to imitate the latest projects of the U.S. was just silly. They already had very successful launch systems that are still world class today. The Soviet shuttle program was a waste of time and money, no matter if it was a technical success. It was Soviet silliness at it’s finest trying to match the west point for point in whatever we did, when they didn’t need to.

    • Hola! says:

      Agreed, they had the a couple projects developed by Chelomey to surpass the US shuttle program, but Communist party decided they should build an identical shuttle.

  5. bunkerbuster says:

    Love how they show the soyuz.

  6. ZeroDrop says:

    And they made a space shuttle way better than the U.S. model. Much tougher and the shuttle did manage to do a complete mission on automatic, including landing! No people aboard! They did a splendid job just to finish in a fail.

    It’s incredible: when we see a lot of technology wasted in Soviet Union (planes, bunkers, all types of radar and military installations), we can’t help thinking about how was when all this technology was in full use, with nothing destroyed around.

    • Archy Bunka says:

      How can you say that the Soviet Shuttle was better than the American shuttle, seriously? The American shuttle was launched successfully over 130 times. The American shuttle built the ISS, and successfully achieved so much I cannot list it all here.

      The Buran, was a failure. Why? Because they couldn’t get the tiles right. The cost of replacing all those tiles resulted in the elimination of the program. One automated launch, which only proved the system a failure.

      • ZeroDrop says:

        Even if the two shuttles never had flown, the Russian would still be better. If the American shuttle has flown 130 missions, this was because of the money backing it. If wasn’t for the money, the Buran would be just as successful, because the ending of the Soviet Union has aborted many Russian researches in many fields of technology.

        The specs don’t lie, Buran is tougher, only lost FIVE thermal protection tiles after TWO complete orbit on earth on unmanned flight. Check for yourself: http://tinyurl.com/2aye3x

      • The Spoon says:

        The Buran-Energia system was a better system than the U.S. space shuttle, it was able to take a much larger payload and return to earth with powered flight and not just a glider like the shuttle making it safer.
        The shuttle has a 1:50 failure rate and a 1:65 catastrophic failure rate which is a pretty bad record.
        The ISS was not fully built by the shuttle either, many components and modules were taken up by alternative systems often from Europe and Russia.
        Buran failed because of a lack of funds not because they couldn’t get the tiles right which the U.S. couldn’t perfect either, constantly losing or damaging tiles, Colombia being the worst example.
        Buran was better, not perfect but better than the space shuttle in most respects.

        • Hirsh says:

          @Spoon – The loss of Columbia had NOTHING, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with the thermal tiles failing or the loss of any of them during flight.

          Columbia was lost due to a large chunk of foam insulation “popcorning” from the central fuel tank during ascent and impacting the leading edge of the wing, a Reinforced Carbon Carbon (RCC)panel (not a tile), with a relative impact velocity of 545 mph, and punched a hole right through the RCC and exposed the internal aluminum wing structure to high reentry temperatures.

          IT HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH THE LOSS OF TILES. They are a completely separate type of thermal protect compared to the Reinforce Carbon Carbon panels used on the leading edge of the U.S. Space Shuttle.

          The Soviet Shuttle was NO BETTER in that regard. In fact the Soviets so closely copied the U.S. Shuttle design that Buran too used RCC panels on the leading edge of the wing, and IMO it too was every bit as vulnerable to impacts in this area. It wasn’t any better then the U.S. Shuttle in that regard, not at all. A similar impact would lead to the same type of damage to Buran.


          Follow the link, scroll down to figure 2. This is the side profile of the RCC the Soviets used. It is remarkably similar to the U.S. design.

          I don’t believe for a second that it was any more durable or safer from 1 pound object traveling at 545 mph impacting the RCC leading edge of the orbiters wing. IMO the damage would be just a fatal as what Columbia suffered.

      • Hola! says:

        US built the ISS? Seriously? The core of the ISS is totally Russian. US is a co-builder (together with canadian robo-hands) and US has the solar batteries installed, but the core facility, many modules are Russian, EU, and Japanese. Russian shuttle program, despite the similar look (because, probably, the laws of aerodynamics were the same in Soviet Union) Buran is different, including the fact the reactive propulsion in Buran was enough to maneuver in space and during the landing. Energia rocket is still the most capable to lift the heaviest loads and to go to other planets, not just to orbit.
        The tiles of Buran is unique and tougher, the cost of tiling for both US and Soviet shuttles was the same, only Russian tiles were completely different material and even more reliable, whereas US tiles did cause the accidental death of the whole crew during the columbia landing.

        • Hirsh says:

          @ Hola! – dude your reading comprehension is lacking. He’s talking about the shuttle program, the fact that the space station has been the workhorse that hauled most of it up there, not who built the space station components.

          ” The American shuttle built the ISS”

          • Hirsh says:

            Oops should have said “the fact that the space SHUTTLE has been the workhorse that hauled most of it up there”

            Of course your right about it being an international effort but he was just talking about how a lot of it actually got up there.

      • marxistworker says:

        Astronaut Archy: Have you been watching the PBS “Fabric of the Cosmos” series?

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