What would a self-launching Space Shuttle look like?

This is the OK-GLI, part of the Soviet Shuttle Buran program, the largest and most expensive space program in the history of the Soviet Union.

The OK-GLI completed 25 test flights between 1985 and 1988 before being retired. The OK-GLI was powered by four AL-31 jet engines with the fuel tank in the cargo bay. The highest altitude it achieved was 6000 meters or 19,000 ft. It never reached space.

A sister ship in the Buran program, the Buran Spacecraft did reach orbit and completed two unmanned Earth orbits. It was the only orbital flight in the Buran program.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.