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Igor Petrovich Volk

Signed cover by Igor Volk.

Igor Petrovich Volk

(Civilian Buran Cosmonaut #5)

Born on... 12 Apr. 1937
Join Buran Team in: 1977
Left Buran Team in: 1996
As... Civilian Test Pilot
Major assignments: Cosmonaut-researcher aboard Soyuz T-12, 12 Buran ALT's

Graduated from Higher Air Force School and from Moscow Aviation Institute with an engineering degree; civilian test pilot of LII; was selected as cosmonaut for Buran flights on 30.07.1980 (LII-1); OKP (cosmonaut basic training): 12/78 - 7/80; later again Commander Gromov Flight Research Center at Gromov Flight Research Institute (LII). Soviet manned space flights of Vostok and Soyuz craft have allways depended on automatic guidance and control systems, using pilots as back-up systems. Buran, however, requires its pilots to be able of landing the vehicle. As preparation for this assignment, Igor Volk served as cosmonaut-researcher aboard Soyuz T-12 mission to Salyut 7, on July 1984. Immediatly upon landing, Volk was transfered to an helicopter, which flew from the touchdown site to the city of Dzhezhkazgan. There he took the controls of a Tu-154 airplane and performed a simulated Buran approach to the landing strip at the Baikonur Cosmodrome. While the Tu-154 was taxiing to a stop, Volk was ordered to back to his spacesuit. He was then put into a cockpit of a Mig-25, which he flown to an altitude of 2.1 kilometers and down to a deadstick landing. He was schedulle to command the first manned Buran II flight, that should have taken place in 1993. He is one of the most experienced russian test pilots (with over 6,000 hours of flying time, 4,000 as a test pilot, in 80 diferent tipes of aircraft!) and surelly the one that mastered the Buran better by the time the program was canceled.




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