History Main / SovietSuperScience

28th Jul '16 9:18:12 AM Synthesis
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* There are many abandoned Soviet installations whose purpose is known to neither Russia nor United States. Many are research facilities that were given last minute orders to sabotage their archives, and are so alien and different from other known buildings that we can only guess what they were meant for.
15th Jul '16 9:33:34 PM nombretomado
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It is worth noting that historically the most recognizable disciplines of any super science--genetics and cybernetics--received a poor start in the USSR as the Party proclaimed those "false sciences" for being "bourgeois" (which makes as much sense as Nazis dismissing [[AlbertEinstein Einsteinian relativity]] and the modern theory of the atom as "Jewish physics"). This stance wouldn't be lifted until Khruschev took power and USSR's first computer was finished in the mid-50s.

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It is worth noting that historically the most recognizable disciplines of any super science--genetics and cybernetics--received a poor start in the USSR as the Party proclaimed those "false sciences" for being "bourgeois" (which makes as much sense as Nazis dismissing [[AlbertEinstein [[UsefulNotes/AlbertEinstein Einsteinian relativity]] and the modern theory of the atom as "Jewish physics"). This stance wouldn't be lifted until Khruschev took power and USSR's first computer was finished in the mid-50s.
5th Jun '16 4:32:38 PM StrixObscuro
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** Soviet scientists trying to get a leg up on American engineering with bizarre creations like Mongu and the Titanium Man formed the glut of IronMan's original rogue's gallery.

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** Soviet scientists trying to get a leg up on American engineering with bizarre creations like Mongu and the Titanium Man formed the glut of IronMan's ComicBook/IronMan's original rogue's gallery.



* In DaleBrown's books, while the former-Soviets-now-Russians needed to reverse-engineer American tech for most of their new toys, they did come up with powerful anti-satellite lasers on their own.

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* In DaleBrown's Creator/DaleBrown's books, while the former-Soviets-now-Russians needed to reverse-engineer American tech for most of their new toys, they did come up with powerful anti-satellite lasers on their own.



* Creator/OlegDivov's ''Zombie Trail'' trilogy is all about Soviet "psychotronic" weapons and their GoneHorriblyWrong side effects. The original Project came to be after an American misinformation campagin led the Soviet leadership to believe that the US was experimenting with PsychicPowers. Unintentionally, the resulting Soviet psychic program bore fruit. A "psychotronic cannon" was built that could be used to MindControl people on a massive scale. However, it had to be operated by an extremely powerful psychic. In order to create one (or more), the Children's Program was set up that involved subjecting 1000 children to radiation, hoping the resulting mutation would be psychic in nature. It was a near-complete disaster, as all but 5 children died. Some of the survivors, though, did become the coveted super-psychics, although they refused to fire the cannon. Additional experiments were conducted on metropolitan scale by building powerful mind-control generators in major Soviet cities that would eliminate all dissent. They worked for a while, until interdimensional holes started opening, letting in EnergyBeings that took over humans and became so-called "zombies" (of the fast variety). You'd think the experiments would stop in a WhatHaveIDone fashion. No such luck. The third novel reveals that the modern-day Russian version of the Project succeeded in subliminaly influencing the world population into thinking that everything Russian is cool.
* ''Red Plenty'' by Francis Spufford is an AlternateHistory novel in which the Soviet Union decides to outdo capitalism by creating a proper planned economy with the help of computers and cybernetics. The novel is based on actual work being done at the time behind the Iron Curtain but, as in real life,[[note]]Preliminary experiments in economy automation has shown nearly miraculouis results in improving efficiency and fighting graft and corruption among management, but it turned out that in the informal favors-based economy of the late Soviet Union the ''real'' economic agents had little interest in that. In fact, when the computerized accounting has shown that the enterprize directors has amassed enormous stocks of highly sought-after resources (for the informal trade) that ostensibly had to be fairly distributed, and that fact alone blocked several imprtant projects, the Soviet police had moved in, and, few convictions later, the influential figures in the Government put political pressure to have the program scaled back and eventually cancelled.[[/note]] cynical realism triumphs over communist idealism and only token reforms are made.
* The Russian multi-writer series called ''Death Zone'' is about the aftermath of a strange event involving a NegativeSpaceWedgie that wipes out several major Russian cities and creates five anomalous areas roughtly 50 kilometers in diameter separated from the rest of the world by gravity bubbles. One of the novels eventually reveals that the so-called Catastrophe was, in fact, caused by the second activation of a device that was originally developed by a Soviet scientist to allow instantaneous hyperdimentional transportation. The first activation of the device on April 26, 1986, caused the 4th reactor of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant to meltdown.

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* Creator/OlegDivov's ''Zombie Trail'' trilogy is all about Soviet "psychotronic" weapons and their GoneHorriblyWrong side effects. The original Project came to be after an American misinformation campagin campaign led the Soviet leadership to believe that the US was experimenting with PsychicPowers. Unintentionally, the resulting Soviet psychic program bore fruit. A "psychotronic cannon" was built that could be used to MindControl people on a massive scale. However, it had to be operated by an extremely powerful psychic. In order to create one (or more), the Children's Program was set up that involved subjecting 1000 children to radiation, hoping the resulting mutation would be psychic in nature. It was a near-complete disaster, as all but 5 children died. Some of the survivors, though, did become the coveted super-psychics, although they refused to fire the cannon. Additional experiments were conducted on metropolitan scale by building powerful mind-control generators in major Soviet cities that would eliminate all dissent. They worked for a while, until interdimensional holes started opening, letting in EnergyBeings that took over humans and became so-called "zombies" (of the fast variety). You'd think the experiments would stop in a WhatHaveIDone fashion. No such luck. The third novel reveals that the modern-day Russian version of the Project succeeded in subliminaly subliminally influencing the world population into thinking that everything Russian is cool.
* ''Red Plenty'' by Francis Spufford is an AlternateHistory novel in which the Soviet Union decides to outdo capitalism by creating a proper planned economy with the help of computers and cybernetics. The novel is based on actual work being done at the time behind the Iron Curtain but, as in real life,[[note]]Preliminary experiments in economy automation has shown nearly miraculouis miraculous results in improving efficiency and fighting graft and corruption among management, but it turned out that in the informal favors-based economy of the late Soviet Union the ''real'' economic agents had little interest in that. In fact, when the computerized accounting has shown that the enterprize enterprise directors has amassed enormous stocks of highly sought-after resources (for the informal trade) that ostensibly had to be fairly distributed, and that fact alone blocked several imprtant projects, the Soviet police had moved in, and, few convictions later, the influential figures in the Government put political pressure to have the program scaled back and eventually cancelled.[[/note]] cynical realism triumphs over communist idealism and only token reforms are made.
* The Russian multi-writer series called ''Death Zone'' is about the aftermath of a strange event involving a NegativeSpaceWedgie that wipes out several major Russian cities and creates five anomalous areas roughtly roughly 50 kilometers in diameter separated from the rest of the world by gravity bubbles. One of the novels eventually reveals that the so-called Catastrophe was, in fact, caused by the second activation of a device that was originally developed by a Soviet scientist to allow instantaneous hyperdimentional transportation. The first activation of the device on April 26, 1986, caused the 4th reactor of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant to meltdown.



* In the first episode of ''Series/TheTick'' live action TV series, the Tick and Arthur must thwart the Red Scare, a robot made in the 1970s by the Soviet Union, programed to destroy the US President. Unaware of the present year however, the Red Scare seeks to destroy ''former'' President Carter.
* The ''Series/{{JAG}}'' epispde "Iron Coffin" features the supercavitating Russian torpedo VA-111 Shkval (see real life below), which for an uninformed viewer might come across as pure fiction. However, [[spoiler: the Shkval in the episode has a serious design flaw as it retargets the submarine which launched it. The Americans have observed it before, but the Russians thinks the Americans are interfering.]]
** This example also counts on a ''meta'' level, as the real-life stock ''Shkval'' [[spoiler: is unguided and is physically unable to retarget itself, being in effect an underwater rocket]], but [[RuleOfDrama was given imaginary capabilities for the sake of drama]].

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* In the first episode of ''Series/TheTick'' live action TV series, the Tick and Arthur must thwart the Red Scare, a robot made in the 1970s by the Soviet Union, programed programmed to destroy the US President. Unaware of the present year however, the Red Scare seeks to destroy ''former'' President Carter.
* The ''Series/{{JAG}}'' epispde episode "Iron Coffin" features the supercavitating Russian torpedo VA-111 Shkval (see real life below), which for an uninformed viewer might come across as pure fiction. However, [[spoiler: the [[spoiler:the Shkval in the episode has a serious design flaw as it retargets re-targets the submarine which launched it. The Americans have observed it before, but the Russians thinks the Americans are interfering.]]
** This example also counts on a ''meta'' level, as the real-life stock ''Shkval'' [[spoiler: is [[spoiler:is unguided and is physically unable to retarget re-target itself, being in effect an underwater rocket]], but [[RuleOfDrama was given imaginary capabilities for the sake of drama]].drama]].
* Subverted in ''Series/TheAmericans'', where the Soviet scientists are clearly struggling to catch up to their American counterparts, to the point that they're resorting to industrial espionage, theft, kidnapping, and an extremely ill-advised venture into developing biological weapons (because they've realized that they'll never close the gap with the US when it comes to nuclear weapons.)



* ''VideoGame/SidMeiersAlphaCentauri'' recycles this in space by bringing in a University of Planet faction, ostensibly just following a ForScience ideology, but actually being thoroughly Russian in terms of flavour.

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* ''VideoGame/SidMeiersAlphaCentauri'' recycles this in space by bringing in a University of Planet faction, ostensibly just following a ForScience ideology, but actually being thoroughly Russian in terms of flavour.flavor.



* ''VideoGame/{{Awesomenauts}}'' has Yuri, a 1960s space race monkey shot into orbit with a jetpack. Disappearing into a warp field and turning into a radioactive genius, he gets lasers, builds a computer all while playing his Russian musical anthem and chatting with a deep accented voice. The American character? He's a cowboy!

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* ''VideoGame/{{Awesomenauts}}'' has Yuri, a 1960s 1960's space race monkey shot into orbit with a jetpack. Disappearing into a warp field and turning into a radioactive genius, he gets lasers, builds a computer all while playing his Russian musical anthem and chatting with a deep accented voice. The American character? He's a cowboy!



* ''TheTick'' had the Russians working on a sentient beard, so the US developed a mustache.

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* ''TheTick'' ''WesternAnimation/TheTick'' had the Russians working on a sentient beard, so the US developed a mustache.



* Played with in an episode of ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill'' in which Bill learns that he was unwittingly part of an experiment to create super-soldiers who could fight in the Arctic, and this might be the cause of his weight gain. While the experiment sounds idiotic, Hank insists that it probably made sense at the time, because the US government seriously thought the Soviet Union had secret weapons up their sleeves.



* In the end, we cannot forget the example of Soviet Superscience that quite possibly defined the latter half of the 20th century: The plutonium-implosion bomb that detonated at 7:00am on the 29th of August, 1949, at Semipalatinsk in the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic. The bomb, developed five years quicker than the Anglo-US intelligence services believed possible, turned out to be 50% more destructive than the Soviet scientists had believed possible, as it destroyed one of the most elaborate nuclear test sites (a small mockup city, complete with metro system and a "garrison" of heavy military equipment and animals, was annihilated). Notably, the Soviet science teams made little use of the data they received from the Manhattan Project; their "Prince of Science", Igor Kurchatov, restricted the team to using the US designs only to check their work. The Soviet detonation had many names: RDS-1. Article 501. Joe-1. But it was the name the science teams gave to the test that will live in history: ''Pervaya molniya - "First Lighting" ''.

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* In the end, we cannot forget the example of Soviet Superscience that quite possibly defined the latter half of the 20th century: The plutonium-implosion bomb that detonated at 7:00am 7:00 am on the 29th of August, 1949, at Semipalatinsk in the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic. The bomb, developed five years quicker than the Anglo-US intelligence services believed possible, turned out to be 50% more destructive than the Soviet scientists had believed possible, as it destroyed one of the most elaborate nuclear test sites (a small mockup city, complete with metro system and a "garrison" of heavy military equipment and animals, was annihilated). Notably, the Soviet science teams made little use of the data they received from the Manhattan Project; their "Prince of Science", Igor Kurchatov, restricted the team to using the US designs only to check their work. The Soviet detonation had many names: RDS-1. Article 501. Joe-1. But it was the name the science teams gave to the test that will live in history: ''Pervaya molniya - "First Lighting" ''.
5th Jun '16 3:17:13 PM DDE
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All in all, the Soviets had a mixed record as far as science goes - they [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yuri_Gagarin put the first man in space]], but also brought the world [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lysenkoism Lysenkoism]], [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punitive_psychiatry_in_the_Soviet_Union the abuse of psychiatry for "rehabilitation" purposes]]. The USSR pioneered [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radial_Keratotomy modern corrective eye surgery]], yet fell behind in steel manufacturing, despite experimenting with it the longest. The Soviets, however, [[ILoveNuclearPower loved Nuclear Power]], the world's first nuclear power plant to generate electricity for a power grid went online in USSR. Too bad [[{{UsefulNotes/Chernobyl}} a certain accident]] [[NeverLiveItDown ruined that reputation]]. So, there are some roots for the trope to grow from. Of course, the inconsistencies can be [[HandWave handwaved]] by the means of an AlternateUniverse, as ''Videogame/CommandAndConquerRedAlert'' testifies.

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All in all, the Soviets had a mixed record as far as science goes - they [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yuri_Gagarin put the first man in space]], but also brought the world [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lysenkoism Lysenkoism]], Lysenkoism]] and [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punitive_psychiatry_in_the_Soviet_Union the abuse of psychiatry for "rehabilitation" purposes]]. The USSR pioneered [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radial_Keratotomy modern corrective eye surgery]], yet fell behind in steel manufacturing, despite experimenting with it the longest. The Soviets, however, [[ILoveNuclearPower loved Nuclear Power]], the world's first nuclear power plant to generate electricity for a power grid went online in USSR. Too bad [[{{UsefulNotes/Chernobyl}} a certain accident]] [[NeverLiveItDown ruined that reputation]]. So, there are some roots for the trope to grow from. Of course, the inconsistencies can be [[HandWave handwaved]] by the means of an AlternateUniverse, as ''Videogame/CommandAndConquerRedAlert'' testifies.



The fall of the Soviet Union is often used as a reason why long-abandoned SovietSuperscience is once again rearing its ugly head, it having been forgotten about, lost in the confusion or sold off by corrupt handlers in the post-Soviet restructuring of Russian society.

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The fall of the Soviet Union is often used as a reason why long-abandoned SovietSuperscience is once again rearing its ugly head, it having been forgotten about, lost in the confusion or sold off by corrupt handlers in the post-Soviet restructuring of Russian society.
society. Admittedly, the same story was used by many a charlatan in Russia as well.



** However, most supercavitating weapons fall into AwesomeButImpractical. The Shkval, for example, has virtually no way to guide itself (by virtue of being powered by [[CrazyAwesome a freaking jet engine underwater]]) and is designed to be fired back down the bearing of an incoming torpedo, and initially had a ''nuclear warhead'' on it because that was the only way to guarantee hitting anything. Less insane weapons designers noticed that such speed was pretty unnecessary (as compared to the normal Soviet R&D doctrine of "bigger" followed by "more") and while it's unclear if Shkvals are still deployed on Russian ships, other weaponry has certainly surpassed it.

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** However, most supercavitating weapons fall into AwesomeButImpractical. The Shkval, for example, has virtually no way to guide itself (by virtue of being powered by [[CrazyAwesome a freaking jet engine solid-fuel rocket underwater]]) and is designed to be fired back down the bearing of an incoming torpedo, and initially had a ''nuclear warhead'' on it because that was the only way to guarantee hitting anything. Less insane weapons designers noticed that such speed was pretty unnecessary (as compared to the normal Soviet R&D doctrine of "bigger" followed by "more") and while it's unclear if Shkvals are still deployed on Russian ships, other weaponry has certainly surpassed it.



* In the field of space, there's Polyus (the world's only space battle station, which fortunately for the West failed on launch) and a ground-mounted laser called Terra-3.

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* In the field of space, there's Polyus (the world's only space battle station, (a megawatt-class orbital laser testbed, which fortunately for the West failed on launch) and a ground-mounted laser called Terra-3.



** While the USAAF-CIA MOL space spy outpost never materialized, several of the Soviet stations were purely military installations armed with a 23 mm gun for defensive purposes.



** The stored NK-33 were refitted by Aerojet by getting rid of the old stock Soviet electronics, adapting the engines to US circuitry and modifying the steering systems. The result is called the AJ-26, and was used by Orbital Sciences in their Antares rocket. Emphasis on the past tense: in the great Soviet tradition AJ-26s soon began blowing up on test stands, and when one exploded in actual use - taking with it an Antares and a load of supplies for the International Space Station - Orbital Sciences had a change of mind and decided to leave this particular bit of Soviet Superscience to the history books.

to:

** The stored NK-33 were refitted by Aerojet by getting rid of the old stock Soviet electronics, adapting the engines to US circuitry and modifying the steering systems. The result is called the AJ-26, and was used by Orbital Sciences in their Antares rocket. Emphasis on the past tense: in the great Soviet tradition AJ-26s soon began blowing up on test stands, and when one exploded in actual use - taking with it an Antares and a load of supplies for the International Space Station - Orbital Sciences had a change of mind and decided to leave this particular bit of Soviet Superscience most of them ''manufactured'' during the Moon Race - to the history books.books.
** ...Except they proceeded to purchase modern Russian engines of the RD-170 family, with the full-size RD-170 proper being the world's most powerful liquid-fuelled rocket motor. In fact, America's significant (and increasing) dependency on Russian-made rocket engines is a major source of political controversy.



* The Soviet space program managed to build the longest lasting probes ever to touch the surface of Venus. While most probes were crushed to death before even coming within 25km of the surface, Venera 13 survived on the ground transmitting data for a record setting 127 minutes before being crushed, melted, and dissolved by the harsh Venusian atmosphere. Sure, Venus is a DeathWorld, [[MotherRussiaMakesYouStrong but at least it's not Siberia.]]
** The Russian manned space program is still very much active, while its US counterpart is currently defunct. So, at least in some sectors, (ex-)Soviets did get to bury Americans (in the original sense meant by Khrushchev--i.e. "we will outlast you so that we'll be at your funeral.")

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* The Soviet space program managed to build the longest lasting longest-lasting probes ever to touch the surface of Venus. While most probes were crushed to death before even coming within 25km of the surface, US had one probe launch the ground through dumb luck, Venera 13 survived on the ground transmitting data for a record setting record-setting 127 minutes before being crushed, melted, and dissolved by the harsh Venusian atmosphere. Sure, Venus is a DeathWorld, [[MotherRussiaMakesYouStrong but at least it's not Siberia.]]
** The last two Soviet landers were also piggybacked by French balloon probes.
** The Russian manned space program is still very much active, while its US counterpart is currently essentially defunct. So, at least in some sectors, (ex-)Soviets did get to bury Americans (in the original sense meant by Khrushchev--i.e. "we will outlast you so that we'll be at your funeral.")



** And don't even get us started on the amount of charlatanism being pushed in the post-Soviet Russia using this premise...



* While not exactly super-science now. The Soviet [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teletank Teletank]] was technically the first remote controlled attack drone built. And considering this was during WW2 and they had to keep up with Germany and their advances. They did manage to build a better RC tank than the German's tank buster, which was a bomb strapped to two treads and commanded through wired controls to blow up a tank.

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* While not exactly super-science now. The now, the Soviet [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teletank Teletank]] TT-26 teletank]] was technically the first remote controlled attack drone built. And considering this was during WW2 and they had to keep up with Germany and their advances. They did manage to build a better RC tank than the German's tank buster, which was a bomb strapped to two treads and commanded through wired controls to blow up a tank.AttackDrone built.




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** Except for the one chap called Sergei Korolev... and hence we get Tsiolkovsky [http://www.orbit.zkm.de/files/orbit/iss008e21921.jpg sharing the prime spot on the ISS Zvezda bulkhead with none less than Gagarin].
1st May '16 10:26:24 PM JackG
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* Honorable mention should go to Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, a self-taught rocket scientist who developed the principles of spaceflight long before Oberth and Goddard. Unfortunately despite being lauded in Soviet propaganda later in life, his role was minimal because few people outside Russia knew about his work.
1st May '16 10:15:14 PM JackG
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Added DiffLines:

* And let's not forget the nasty shock that Sputnik caused, triggering the race to the Moon.
24th Mar '16 10:58:27 AM SSJMagus
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** Before [[UsefulNotes/RedOctober the Russian Revolution]] and his subsequent departure to the United States, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Igor_Sikorsky Igor Sikorsky]] designed the first four-engine airliner "Russky Vityaz", and the first heavy bomber "Ilya Muromets". The latter resulted in one of Russia's current [[RealLife/CoolPlane Tu-160 "Blackjack"]] strategic bombers (all 35 of which are [[NamedWeapon individually named]] after famous Russians) being named "Igor Sikorsky".

to:

** Before [[UsefulNotes/RedOctober the Russian Revolution]] and his subsequent departure to the United States, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Igor_Sikorsky Igor Sikorsky]] designed the first four-engine airliner "Russky Vityaz", and the first heavy bomber "Ilya Muromets". The latter resulted in one of Russia's current [[RealLife/CoolPlane Tu-160 "Blackjack"]] strategic bombers (all 35 of which are [[NamedWeapon individually named]] after famous Russians) being named "Igor Sikorsky". This created some controversy, because Sikorsky is much more famous (even in Russia) for his development of American helicopters than for his Russian bomber.
5th Mar '16 3:23:58 PM FGHIK
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All in all, the Soviets had a mixed record as far as science goes - they [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yuri_Gagarin put the first man in space]], but also brought the world [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lysenkoism Lysenkoism]], [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punitive_psychiatry_in_the_Soviet_Union the abuse of psychiatry for "rehabilitation" purposes]]. The USSR pioneered [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radial_Keratotomy modern corrective eye surgery]], yet fell behind in steel manufacturing, despite experimenting with it the longest. The Soviets, however, [[ILoveNuclearPower loved Nuclear Power]]--the world's first nuclear power plant to generate electricity for a power grid went online in USSR--so there are some roots for the trope to grow from. Of course, the inconsistencies can be [[HandWave handwaved]] by the means of an AlternateUniverse, as ''Videogame/CommandAndConquerRedAlert'' testifies.

to:

All in all, the Soviets had a mixed record as far as science goes - they [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yuri_Gagarin put the first man in space]], but also brought the world [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lysenkoism Lysenkoism]], [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punitive_psychiatry_in_the_Soviet_Union the abuse of psychiatry for "rehabilitation" purposes]]. The USSR pioneered [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radial_Keratotomy modern corrective eye surgery]], yet fell behind in steel manufacturing, despite experimenting with it the longest. The Soviets, however, [[ILoveNuclearPower loved Nuclear Power]]--the Power]], the world's first nuclear power plant to generate electricity for a power grid went online in USSR--so USSR. Too bad [[{{UsefulNotes/Chernobyl}} a certain accident]] [[NeverLiveItDown ruined that reputation]]. So, there are some roots for the trope to grow from. Of course, the inconsistencies can be [[HandWave handwaved]] by the means of an AlternateUniverse, as ''Videogame/CommandAndConquerRedAlert'' testifies.
20th Jan '16 2:43:58 AM Fallingwater
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* A real-life example of "abandoned Soviet experiment" is the NK-33 closed circuit rocket engine. Originally intended for use in the attempt to get a man on the Moon, the prototypes were supposed to be destroyed once that project was cancelled. Sore losers the Soviets. Fortunately, several NK-33 engines were hidden in a warehouse by their designer, Nikolai Dmitriyevich Kuznetsov. That happened in the 70s. Fast forward to the 90s, when somewhat improved relations between East and West, and presumably some money, helped the old relics emerge from storage, where they proved to be still cutting edge tech despite being two decades old. If [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NK-33 Wikipedia is to be believed]], the NK-33 achieves the highest thrust-to-mass ratio among all currently existing rocket engines, and it, or variations thereof, are now used by satellite launch companies like Orbital Sciences Corporation and several future space projects plan to employ them as well.

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* A real-life example of "abandoned Soviet experiment" is the NK-33 closed circuit rocket engine. Originally intended for use in the attempt to get a man on the Moon, the prototypes were supposed to be destroyed once that project was cancelled. Sore losers the Soviets. Fortunately, several NK-33 engines were hidden in a warehouse by their designer, Nikolai Dmitriyevich Kuznetsov. That happened in the 70s. Fast forward to the 90s, when somewhat improved relations between East and West, and presumably some money, helped the old relics emerge from storage, where they proved to be still cutting edge tech despite being two decades old. If [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NK-33 Wikipedia is to be believed]], the NK-33 achieves the highest thrust-to-mass ratio among all currently existing rocket engines, engines.
** The stored NK-33 were refitted by Aerojet by getting rid of the old stock Soviet electronics, adapting the engines to US circuitry
and it, or variations thereof, are now modifying the steering systems. The result is called the AJ-26, and was used by satellite launch companies like Orbital Sciences Corporation in their Antares rocket. Emphasis on the past tense: in the great Soviet tradition AJ-26s soon began blowing up on test stands, and several future space projects plan when one exploded in actual use - taking with it an Antares and a load of supplies for the International Space Station - Orbital Sciences had a change of mind and decided to employ them as well.leave this particular bit of Soviet Superscience to the history books.
9th Jan '16 2:09:15 PM MarkLungo
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** Before [[RedOctober the Russian Revolution]] and his subsequent departure to the United States, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Igor_Sikorsky Igor Sikorsky]] designed the first four-engine airliner "Russky Vityaz", and the first heavy bomber "Ilya Muromets". The latter resulted in one of Russia's current [[RealLife/CoolPlane Tu-160 "Blackjack"]] strategic bombers (all 35 of which are [[NamedWeapon individually named]] after famous Russians) being named "Igor Sikorsky".

to:

** Before [[RedOctober [[UsefulNotes/RedOctober the Russian Revolution]] and his subsequent departure to the United States, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Igor_Sikorsky Igor Sikorsky]] designed the first four-engine airliner "Russky Vityaz", and the first heavy bomber "Ilya Muromets". The latter resulted in one of Russia's current [[RealLife/CoolPlane Tu-160 "Blackjack"]] strategic bombers (all 35 of which are [[NamedWeapon individually named]] after famous Russians) being named "Igor Sikorsky".
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