The second moonbase proposal was the Zvezda one developed for Valentin Glushko by Ivan Prudnikov in 1974. The crew for the moon base would be brought there by a 31 tonne lunar expeditionary craft, or LEK in Russian. This would use direct ascent, not lunar orbit rendezvous. Once their lunar visit was complete, the three cosmonauts would blast home in their 9.2 tonne upper stage. The reentry vehicle was small, weighing 3.2 tonnes. The initial crew of the base would be three, but this would be doubled as more equipment was ferried up from Earth by Vulkan rockets. The total weight to be transported to the moon would, in the end, be around 130 tonnes, involving up to six Vulkans.

The moon base itself would have three elements: a habitation module, laboratory module and lunar rover. First, there would be a lunar habitation module, or LZhM in Russian. This was a non-returnable 21.5 tonne living and scientific area, 9 m tall, 8 m wide and with a volume of 160 m3. It would deploy solar panels able to generate 8 kW of electricity. Next was a laboratory production module, the LZM in Russian. Weighing 15.5 tonnes, this would stand 4.5m tall and have a volume of 100m3 for oxygen generation, biotechnology and physics experiments, operated by a single
cosmonaut at a time. As was the case with the Galaktika proposal, a lunar rover was an essential element. The Lunokhod would measure 4.5m wide, 8 m long and 3.5 m high, weigh 8.2 tonnes and could transport two cosmonauts up to 200 km distant at a speed of up to 5 km/hr. The rover would be able to drive on expeditions for up to twelve days at a time (a full lunar day), carrying drilling and other scientific equipment.

Подпись: Russia’s moon plans 1964-71 N1-L3 1972-4 N1-L3M 1974-6 Vulkan
Подпись: Korolev and Mishin Mishin Glushko

Valentin Glushko did not give up easily and attempted to resurrect it as Zvezda II in the 1980s. It was a scaled-down proposal, using two Energiya rockets rather than the much larger Vulkan [3]. Designed along lines similar to the N1-L3M plan of his deposed rival Vasili Mishin, two Energiyas would place a 74-tonne complex with five cosmonauts on board into lunar orbit. Three would descend to the surface for a twelve-day surface stay. Preliminary designs of the Zvezda II mothership and lander were done, both being significantly larger than the LOK and the LK. However, even Glushko must have realized that there was no prospect, at this time, that they would receive serious consideration.


moon base plans






Zvezda II


Glushko and Prudnikov Glushko