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Dnepr

by Jean-Jacques Serra
The Dnepr launcher is a converted R-36N Voevoda ICBM (SS-18 Satan). Kosmotras, an international company which includes the Yuehnoye design bureau the constructor of the missile, is marketing the vehicle. Kosmotras was given the rights by the Russian Government to convert and launch over 150 missiles as Dnepr launch vehicles in compliance with the provisions of the START II treaty.


Origin: Inter Continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) of fourth generation

The R-36N is the followup of the R-36 (SS-9 Scarp). It was designed between 1966 anf 1972. Both were built by OKB Yuzhnoye of Tangel at Dniepropetrovsk (Ukraine) but are quite different indeed. The R-36N is the largest ICBM ever built. It was 36.5 m highn 3.0 m diameter and weighed 211 metric tons.

This ICBM was tested from Nov 1972 on. The first version could carry a single warhead at 14000 km with 430 m accuracy. The Mod.2 version with 8 MIRV payloads was deployed in 1976 and the Mod.3 version which featured a single warhead and a 16000 km range was deployed in 1977. The Mod.4 wich was introduced in 1979 could carry 10 MIRV warheads at 8000 km with 260 m accuracy (total capacity: 7.6 t). The Mod.5 followed: it was a MIRVed version with 10 warheads.

This missile uses liquid propellant (NTO and UDMH). The first stage has a RD-264 Glouchko motor (NPO EnergoMach) with integrated flux and 4 combustion chambers. It features 4160 kN thrust and 293 s ISP at ground level (4520 kN and 318 s in vacuum). The second stage propulsion block consists of a mono-chamber motor surrounded by a set of 4 vernier motors designed by Kosberg (KB HkimAutomatiki). The RD-0228 of the initial versions were replaced by RD-0255 with the Mod.4. This provides 755 kN thrust to the second stage. The MIRVed versions are equipped with an additional post-boost stage. It has a Yangel (KB Yuzhnoye) RD-864 (later RD-869 starting with Mod.4).

A total of 308 missiles were deployed (toped in 1980). 156 test flights were made. The START agreements call for the total removal of multiple warheads ICBMs, therefore these vehicles are available for recycling.


The dnepr launcher (SS-18K)

A two-stage vehicle derived from the SS-18 missile (which used to be named SS-18K) can place 500 to 4000 kg payloads in 200-900 km orbits without major modifications. Several 3-stage versions have alors been proposed to enhance its performance (1700-4500 kg in 3000 km orbit).

The first two launches in 1999 and 2000 used the basic version, Dnepr 1. The only modifications compared to the missille are the fairing (2 versions available) and the on-board electronics.

Marketed by Yuzhnoe & Kosmotras.

Dnepr launches


# Launch id Payload Launch date Site Status (orbit in perigee x apogee x inc. x period)
1 99021 Uosat 12 21 Apr 1999 at 05:00 UT  
2 00057 A: Tiungsat 1
B: Megsat 1
C: Unisat 1
D: Saudisat 1A
E: Saudisat 1B
26 Sep 2000 at 10:05 UT  
3 02058 A: Rubin 2
B: Latinsat B
C: Saudisat 1C
D: Unisat 2
E: Trailblazer 2
H: Latinsat A
20 Dec 2002 at 17:00 UT T  
4 04025 A: Latinsat D
C: Demeter
D: Saudicomsat 1
E: Saudicomsat 2
F: Saudisat 2
G: Latinsat C
H: Unisat 3
K: Oscar Echo
29 Jun 2004 at 06:30 UT T  
5 05031 A: Oicets
B: Index sat_index
23 Aug 2005 at 21:10 UT T 610 km x 97.8°
6 06029 Genesis 1 12 Jul 2006 at 14:53 UT Y First satellite launch from Dombarovsky air base
7 n/a 18 satellites including
Belka
Baumanets 1 (92 kg, http://microsat.sm.bmstu.ru/)
Unisat 4
Picpot (http://polimage.polito.it/picpot/html/index.shtml)
14 Cubesat satellites (1 kg):
ICECube 1 (http://www.mae.cornell.edu/cubesat/)
ION (http://cubesat.ece.uiuc.edu/)
Rincon (https://bach.as.arizona.edu/azstarwiki/index.php/Rincon_1)
AeroCube 1 (Aerospace Corporation)
CalPoly CP1
CalPoly CP2 (http://polysat.calpoly.edu/)
Seeds (http://cubesat.aero.cst.nihon-u.ac.jp/)
nCube 1 (http://www.ncube.no/)
Hausat 1 (http://134.75.55.85/new_version/english/hausat_1/index.php)
Merope (http://www.ssel.montana.edu/merope/)
KuteSat (http://www.engr.ku.edu/ae/kutesat.htm)
Sacred (https://bach.as.arizona.edu/azstarwiki/index.php/Main_Page)
Voyager (http://www-ee.eng.hawaii.edu/~cubesat/)
ICEcube 3 (http://www.mae.cornell.edu/cubesat/)
26 Jul 2006 at 18:34 UT T Failure: problem with first stage after 60 s. The hydraulic actuator of the 4th engine is to blame.
8 07012 A: Egyptsat 1
B: Saudisat 3
C: Saudicomsat 7
E: Saudicomsat 6
F: Aerocube 2
H: Saudicomsat 5
J: Saudicomsat 3
K: Mast
L: Saudicomsat 4
M: Polysat CP3
N: Libertad 1
P: Cape 1
Q: Polysat CP4
S: CSTB 1
17 Apr 2007 at 06:46 UT T 650 km x 98.1°
9 07026 Terrasar X 15 Jun 2007 at 02:14 UT T  
10 07028 Genesis 2 28 Jun 2007 at 15:02 UT Y  
11 08040 RapidEye 1
RapidEye 2
RapidEye 3
RapidEye 4
RapidEye 5
29 Aug 2008 at 07:15 UT T  
12 08049 Theos 1 1 Oct 2008 at 06:37 UT Y  
13 09041 A: Deimos 1
B: Dubaisat 1
C: Bnscsat 2
D: Aprizesat 4
E: Nanosat 1B
F: Aprizesat 3
29 Jul 2009 at 18:46 UT T  
14 10013 Cryosat 2 8 Apr 2010 at 13:57 UT T  
15 10028 A: Picard
B: Prisma Mango
F: Prisma Tango
BPA 1 (attached to the rocket)
15 Jun 2010 at 14:42 UT Y  
16 10030 Tandem X 21 Jun 2010 at 02:14 UT T  
17 11044 A: Edusat
B: Nigeriasat 2
C: Nigeriasat X
D: Rasat
E: Aprizesat 5
F: Aprizesat 6
G: Sich 2
BPA 2 (attached to the rocket)
17 Aug 2011 at 07:12 UT Y  
18 13042 Kompsat 5 22 Aug 2013 at 14:39 UT Y  
19 13066 A: Aprizesat 7
B: ZAcube 1
C: Skysat 1
D: Dubaisat 2
E: Optos
F: Unisat 5
G: Stsat 3
H: Wnisat 1
J: Cinema 2
K: Aprizesat 8
L: Cinema 3
M: Triton 1
N: Delfi n3Xt
P: Dove 3
Q: GOMX 1
R: CanX 3C
S: Icube 1
T: Humsat D
U: Dove 4
V: Wren
W: $50 Sat
Y: Velox P2
Z: First Move
AA: Cubebug 2
AB: Nee 02 Krysaor
AC: PUCPsat 1
AD: Qubescout S1
AE: FUNcube 1
AF: Hincube
AG: UWE 3
21 Nov 2013 at 07:10 UT Y  
20 14033 A: KazEOsat 2
B: Hodoyoshi 4
C: Unisat 6
D: Deimos 2
E: Bugsat 1
F: Hodoyoshi 3
G: Saudisat 4
H: Tabletsat Aurora
J: Aprizesat 9
K: Aprizesat 10
M: Duchifat 1
N: Flock 1C-10
P: Pace
Q: Nanosat C BR1
R: QB50p1
S: Flock 1C-7
T: Flock 1C-1
U: Popsat HIP1
V: Flock 1C-2
W: DTUsat 2
X: Flock 1C-4
Y: QB50p2
Z: Flock 1C-11
AA: Antelsat
AB: Flock 1C-9
AC: Flock 1C-6
AD: Perseus 2
AE: Flock 1C-5
AF: Perseus 1
AG: Flock 1C-8
AH: Flock 1C-3
AJ: Polyitan 1
AL: Lemur 1
AM: Aerocube 6A
AN: Aerocube 6B
19 Jun 2014 at 19:11 UT Y 33 satellites released from 17 different countries
21 14070 A: Asnaro 1
B: Hodoyoshi 1
C: Chubusat 1
D: Qsat EOS
E: Tsubame
6 Nov 2014 at 07:35 UT Y  
22 15014 Kompsat 3A 25 Mar 2015 at 22:08 UT Y  
Notes: Launches from T/Tyuratam, P/Plesetsk, Y/Yasny (Dombarovsky air base).

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