Human Spaceflights

International Flight No. 65

Soyuz 30



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Launch, orbit and landing data

Launch date:  27.06.1978
Launch time:  15:27 UTC
Launch site:  Baikonur
Launch pad:  1
Altitude:  197.6 - 261.3 km
Inclination:  51.64°
Docking Salyut 6:  28.06.1978, 17:07:50 UTC
Undocking Salyut 6:  05.07.1978, 10:15:40 UTC
Landing date:  05.07.1978
Landing time:  13:30 UTC
Landing site:  300 km W of Tselinograd

walkout photo

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alternate crew photo

alternate crew photo

alternate crew photo

alternate crew photo

alternate crew photo

alternate crew photo


No.   Surname Given names Position Flight No. Duration Orbits
1  Klimuk  Pyotr Iliyich  Commander 3 7d 22h 02m  125 
2  Hermaszewski  Miroslaw "Mirek"  Research Cosmonaut 1 7d 22h 02m  125 

Crew seating arrangement

1  Klimuk
2  Hermaszewski
1  Klimuk
2  Hermaszewski

Animations: Soyuz

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Backup Crew

No.   Surname Given names Position
1  Kubasov  Valeri Nikolayevich  Commander
2  Jankowski  Zenon "Zden"  Research Cosmonaut


Launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome; landing 300 km west of Tselinograd.

Soyuz 30 was the second Interkosmos mission. Miroslaw Hermaszewski became the first cosmonaut from Poland. Following a one day solo flight Soyuz 30 docked with the Salyut 6 space station on June 28, 1978 and the crew performed common work with the second resident crew.

Experiments on the field of materials science were performed. Photography of the Earth surface and study of the aurora borealis were done together with the second resident crew. The activities of the Soyuz 30 crew, however, were severely curtailed so as not to interfere with the Soyuz 29 crew. On the Soyuz 29 crew's rest day, the international crew had to stay in their Soyuz to perform their experiments.

Nevertheless, Miroslaw Hermaszewski conducted many experiments. One was crystallization experiments which produced 47 grams of cadmium tellurium mercury semiconductors for use by infra-red detectors on board the station. The yield was far greater - 50% compared to 15% - than ground-based experiments. Miroslaw Hermaszewski participated in medical experiments which measured lung capacity and the heart during exercise and in a pressure suit. One experiment, which all four on board the station participated in, was Smak, a taste experiment which sought answers to why some food was less palatable in weightlessness.

The Soyuz 30 crew was trained, as all international crews, in the use of the MKF-6M camera. Training in part took place on a Tu-134 flying at 10 km to best mimic conditions on the station. Miroslaw Hermaszewski photographed Poland in co-ordination with aircraft taking close-up photos, but bad weather over Poland limited the photo sessions. They additionally filmed the Aurora Borealis.

The Soyuz 30 crew packed their experiments into their capsule and returned to earth July 05, 1978.

The Soyuz spacecraft is composed of three elements attached end-to-end - the Orbital Module, the Descent Module and the Instrumentation/Propulsion Module. The crew occupied the central element, the Descent Module. The other two modules are jettisoned prior to re-entry. They burn up in the atmosphere, so only the Descent Module returned to Earth.
Having shed two-thirds of its mass, the Soyuz reached Entry Interface - a point 400,000 feet (121.9 kilometers) above the Earth, where friction due to the thickening atmosphere began to heat its outer surfaces. With only 23 minutes left before it lands on the grassy plains of central Asia, attention in the module turned to slowing its rate of descent.
Eight minutes later, the spacecraft was streaking through the sky at a rate of 755 feet (230 meters) per second. Before it touched down, its speed slowed to only 5 feet (1.5 meter) per second, and it lands at an even lower speed than that. Several onboard features ensure that the vehicle and crew land safely and in relative comfort.
Four parachutes, deployed 15 minutes before landing, dramatically slowed the vehicle's rate of descent. Two pilot parachutes were the first to be released, and a drogue chute attached to the second one followed immediately after. The drogue, measuring 24 square meters (258 square feet) in area, slowed the rate of descent from 755 feet (230 meters) per second to 262 feet (80 meters) per second.
The main parachute was the last to emerge. It is the largest chute, with a surface area of 10,764 square feet (1,000 square meters). Its harnesses shifted the vehicle's attitude to a 30-degree angle relative to the ground, dissipating heat, and then shifted it again to a straight vertical descent prior to landing.
The main chute slowed the Soyuz to a descent rate of only 24 feet (7.3 meters) per second, which is still too fast for a comfortable landing. One second before touchdown, two sets of three small engines on the bottom of the vehicle fired, slowing the vehicle to soften the landing.

Photos / Drawings


Last update on November 29, 2014.