R-1 (missile)

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The R-1 rocket (NATO reporting name SS-1 Scunner, Soviet code name SA11) based[1] on the German V-2 rocket manufactured by the Soviet Union. Even though it was a copy, it was manufactured using Soviet industrial plants and gave the Soviets valuable experience which later enabled the USSR to construct its own much more capable rockets.

SS- 1a Scunner

In 1945 the Soviets captured several key V-2 rocket production facilities, and also gained the services of some German scientists and engineers connected to the project. In particular the Soviets gained control of the main V-2 manufacturing facility at Nordhausen, and had 30 V-2 missiles assembled there by September 1946.

In October 1946 the Soviets transferred the German missile engineers working for them to a special research facility near Moscow, where they were forced to remain until the mid-1950s. The Soviets established a missile design bureau of their own (OKB-1), under the direction of Sergey Korolev. This team was directed to create a Soviet capability to build missiles, starting with a Soviet copy of the German V-2 and moving to more advanced, Soviet-designed missiles in the near future.

In April 1947 Stalin authorised the production of the R-1 missile, the designation for the Soviet copy of V-2. The GRAU index 8A11 was also used. The first tests of the missile began in September 1948. The system was accepted by the Soviet army in November 1950. The R-1 missile could carry a 785 kg warhead of conventional explosive to a maximum range of 270 km, with an accuracy of about 5 km.

In 1947, the R-1A was tested, a variant with a separable warhead. High-altitude scientific experiments were flown with two of the R-1As, and later a series of specialized scientific rockets were built on the basis of the R-1: The R-1B, R-1V, R-1D and R-1E. These carried dogs, and experiments to analyze the upper atmosphere, measure cosmic rays and take far-UV spectra of the Sun.

The R-1's insulated electrical wiring attracted vermin. In one January 1953 incident, thousands of flood-displaced mice disabled many rockets by eating the insulation, requiring "hundreds of cats and repairmen".[2]:116

Operators[edit]

 Soviet Union

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.energia.ru/ru/history/systems/rockets/r1.html
  2. ^ Siddiqi, Asif A. Challenge To Apollo: The Soviet Union and the Space Race, 1945-1974. NASA. 

http://www.russianspaceweb.com/r1.html
http://www.astronautix.com/lvs/r1.htm

External links[edit]