Thursday, November 06, 2008

Drunk, Flying Pigs


Yosh sent me this photo a few days ago. I had no idea what it is, but his wife speaks Russian and did a little research, and the results follow:
Never seen those before. I googled it in Russian and mostly sites with these pics come up, with no useful info but “smart ass” remarks, most posts are from October 2008. But I did find a site-library with various documents/articles that had to do with the Russian space programs (http://epizodsspace.testpilot.ru/bibl/e-g/svin.html). There was an article from 2006 about the story behind those photos. They seem to be real. The label on the bottle of wine says “1936” and the stamp says something about “Military Department”. There were no details in the documentation found in the archives, so they actually found a physics professor who participated in the tests, so he was able to explain quite a bit. The article says that the army was testing (under a close supervision of Beria – an NKVD monster similar and very close to Stalin) the effect of speeds over 12G on the body in jet-propelled rockets.. Beria’s idea was to use similar rockets to descent special forces across the front line. So they shot the poor piggy in the rocket prototype. The article say that they could not get a chimpanzee because they were testing it in 1942 and pigs happen to have internal organs very similar to humans’. This kind of testing happened in Kapustin Yar (a testing ground a little too close to Uralsk – later they even tested nuclear weapons there). They were giving the piglet wine to minimize stress on the animal.

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