This page no longer updated from 31 October 2001. Latest version can be found at VKS

Family: Winged. Country: USSR. Status: Design 1986. Other Designations: MVKS.

In reaction to US X-30 project, government decrees of 27 January and 19 July 1986 ordered development of a Soviet equivalent. The Ministry of Defence issued technical specifications on 1 September for an MVKS, a single-stage reusable aerospaceplane system. The MKVS was to provide effective and economic delivery to near-earth orbit; develop the technology for effective transatmospheric flight; provide super high-speed intercontinental transport, and fulfil military objectives in and from space. It is known that the Tupolev, Yakovlev, and Energia design bureaux submitted designs.

At NPO Energia Tsybin was appointed the Chief Designer for the project. The Energia VKS was designed as a hypersonic rocketplane with multi-regime engines. These engines were turbo-ramjet with in-line rocket chambers. The VKS was sketched out as having a 700 tonne takeoff mass, of which 140 tonnes was structure. A 25 tonne payload could be delivered to a 200 km / 51 degree orbit. Length would have been 71 m, wingspan 42 m, and height 10 m to the top of the fuselage.

Work was abandoned as the Soviet Union broke up and the Tu-2000 seemed the preferred solution.


LEO Payload: 25,000 kg. to: 200 km Orbit. at: 51.0 degrees. Total Mass: 700,000 kg. Core Diameter: 10.0 m. Total Length: 71.0 m.

VKS Chronology

1986 Jan 27 -
1986 Jul 19 -
- 1986 September -


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Last update 12 March 2001.
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