Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-105

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Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-105
Spiral EPOS space glider, prototype 105-11 in the Monino Air Force Museum
Type: Space glider
Design country:

Soviet Union 1955Soviet Union Soviet Union



First flight:




The Mikojan-Gurewitsch MiG-105 Spiral ( Russian Микоян-Гуревич МиГ-105 Спираль , nickname: Lapot (лапоть) for bast shoe - because of the bow shape) was a single-seat experimental glider for the Spiral 50-50 program pursued in the Soviet Union from 1965 . The aim was a spacecraft with reusable components.

The MiG-105 as the forerunner of the planned space glider (OS) had a delta wing, the outer areas of which could be folded up (prototype MiG-105-11 still with a rigid wing) and should lead to a support fuselage configuration. The space glider would have been launched from a supersonic carrier aircraft (GSR) together with a booster (RB). The development Spiral was stopped in 1978 in favor of the development of the space shuttle Buran .


A supersonic carrier aircraft (development contract: Tupolev ) was supposed to bring a booster with the space glider attached to it up to an altitude of 20,000 to 24,000 meters. At a speed of Mach 4, the two-stage booster should ignite and bring the spacecraft into a low orbit at 130 km. From there, the space glider, which was equipped with a main and an auxiliary engine, should be able to fly under its own power to an orbit of over 200 km. After its orbital mission, which was understood as military reconnaissance or attack missions, the space glider should re-enter the earth's atmosphere at about Mach 8 and land in gliding flight after braking down and folding down the side guide surfaces. The skids on the space glider should be suitable for landing on runways made of rammed earth.


  • 1960 - start of conception
  • 1964 - Adoption of a five-year plan 1964–1969 for military space travel
  • 1965 - Official start of the Spiral program under the five-year plan
  • 1969 - End of the Spiral program
  • 1974 - Resumption of the Spiral program
  • 1976 - October 11, first subsonic test flight of the 105-11 up to a height of 560 m, take-off from a strip near Moscow
  • 1976 - November 27, first test flight of the 105-11 with a drop from a Tu-95 K from an altitude of 5,500 meters
  • 1978 - September 1st, the eighth and last successful atmospheric flight of the 105-11, considerable damage to the airframe on landing because the sun-blinded pilot Vasily Urjadov landed to the right of the runway due to false information from the ground.


  • 105-11 - Subsonic prototype for atmospheric flight (EPOS), 2 × Kolessow RD-36
  • 105-12 - Supersonic prototype for atmospheric flight
  • 105-13 - supersonic prototype for orbital flight

Test pilots

In July 1965, a group of Soviet cosmonauts was put together under the direction of Vostok-2 veteran German Titov , who were to be trained for Spiral. In addition to Titov, these were Georgi Dobrowolski , Anatoli Filipchenko , Anatoli Kuklin and Alexander Matinchenko . Another group was formed in December 1967. It consisted of Leonid Kisim , Vladimir Koselski , Vladimir Lyachow , Yuri Malyshev and Alexander Petruschenko . In December 1973, the Spiral group included the cosmonauts Yevgeny Khrunov , Valery Illarionov , Kisim, Koselski, Lyachow and Malyshev. At the same time, there was also a group of test pilots from the Air Force, who from 1976 headed Aviard Fastowez.


The prototype with the number 11 for the subsonic atmosphere flights is today in the Central Museum of the Air Force of the Russian Federation in Monino near Moscow .

The prototypes 105-12 and 105-13 have also been built according to different sources. Of these, 105-12 was apparently even ready for use when the program ended. There is no information about possible flights of 105-12 or 105-13, the whereabouts of these prototypes is unknown.

Other Projects

The Spiral project would eventually lead to the development of a space glider in the versions of a scout, an interceptor and a bomber. These further developments were in turn the content of the Uragan project, which, however, after the end of the Spiral project was only staged in the form of a propaganda pinch in order to unsettle the USA.

The development of the space shuttle Buran was also able to benefit from the findings from the Spiral program. Several generations of unmanned test bodies from the BOR series were built to test the Buran's heat shields , all of which had the geometry and flight characteristics of the spiral space glider in the initial phase. The development teams, the test methods and the supplier network of Spiral have also largely been incorporated into the Buran program.

Technical specifications

MiG-105 "OS"
Parameter Data
crew 1
length 8.50 m
Base diameter 2.80 m
Max. diameter 2.80 m
span 6.40 m
Wing shape Delta wing
Dimensions 4220 kg
Main engine thrust 14,700 kN
fuel 500 kg
Auxiliary engine thrust 784 N.
Launch vehicle Soyuz missile ( GRAY index 11A511U)

See also

Web links

Commons : Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-105  - Collection of Images, Videos and Audio Files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ A b Anatoly Zak: Development of the Spiral Orbiter. In: www.russianspaceweb.com. November 20, 2008, accessed May 3, 2020 .
  2. a b c d Vadim P. Lukashevich: Spiral orbital aircraft program. In: www.buran.ru. Retrieved May 3, 2020 .
  3. Uragan Space Interceptor in the Encyclopedia Astronautica, accessed on May 3, 2020