When the Soviets Built an Armed Space Station

I will say it again, the weapons of the Cold War could get crazy. Anything goes here, from arming commercial jets, building an armored chopper, to making insane flying saucers. Getting an advantage over your rival is the name of the game. Hence crazy ideas came out. If this will give the US or the Soviet advantage over each other, planners will lap it out, no matter how crazy it sounds.

And when the space race heats up, the Soviets just built the real-life working version of a TIE Fighter. Well close to the TIE fighter, as it was not meant to maneuver like a fighting space craft. In fact, it stayed in orbit all the time. It’s a space station to b e exact, with something sinister to offer.

The Soviets pioneered the development of the venerable space station. Since they are the first to send a man into space, it won’t take that long for them to figure out how men could live there in prolonged periods. Soon the Salyut space station came which startled the West so much. The Soviets demonstrated their technical superiority in those days by bringing science fiction to life. They made a space outpost for astronauts, though their first mission ended up in disaster. Yet that don’t stop the Soviet planners to perfect their technology and launch several successful missions. They then upped the ante by arming their space station. You heard it right. One of these orbital outposts carried a canon, which turned this space habitation, into science fiction type fortress.

The Salyut Space Station
Grainy image of Salyut 1.

Before we proceed, it’s worth mentioning first the very first space station programme known as Salyut. The “Salyut” actually meant “fireworks” in Russian, and by being the first to setup an orbital habitation for cosmonauts, where they can live for extended period, the Soviets truly deserve a lot of fireworks display for such an achievement. A series of four space stations was sent into orbit in a period of fifteen years, from 1971 to 1986.

The programme broke