Main results obtained with the help of SPECTRE equipment one can find in our publications. Here I want to recall my impressions from the ARAKS experiment and my participation in it. I started my work at IZMIRAN (Institute of Terrestrial Magnetism, Ionosphere and Radiowave Propagation) immediately after graduation from the Physical Faculty of the Lomonosov Moscow State University. I graduated from Radiophysical Department but my specialty was the science, radiophysics, not device engineering. So I was very surprised when I was requested to start the design of the wideband receiver. For the few years I converted into the radio engineer. I looked for transistors, studied the requirements for electronic elements to use them in space, thought about how to register the wideband signal. It is difficult to imagine how it was in the beginning of 70-th. No computers, no digital processing, no flash memory, everything is analogous technique. We decided to use the video tape recorder. The Japanese JVC-871P was selected, and we received enormous money (for this time) as a support to acquire this recorder (near 10,000 USD). The main problem for me was the fighting with the receiver excitation. Actually, the receiver was a wideband (0.1 – 5 MHz) amplifier. I overcome the problem few days before device delivering to flight tests. Our French partners did not believe in our idea at all, and they made everything possible to limit our participation. During the first half of the first rocket launch our equipment was switched off to let to work only the French radiospectrometer, and after that it was active only every second sequence of the electron gun for the same reason. One can see this in the first figure where the dynamic wideband spectra are presented.

Fig. 1 Dynamic HF spectra registered by the wideband SPECTRE equipment during the ARAKS NORD launch 26 of January 1975


But my personal victory was the second flight when the French HF device failed, and only my device gave results for HF spectra stimulated by electron gun. These results are presented in the Figure 2. This project was a great and very important experience for me, regardless I was not permitted to go to the Kerguelen Island. I never been there, but our results were never repeated in active experiments, and our approach was revolutionary for the wave-particle interaction studies.


It’s a pity that the results were not widely known due to changes in the IZMIRAN directorship and explicit loss of interest of our French partners to continue the ARAKS results exploration.


Fig. 2 Dynamic HF spectra registered by the wideband SPECTRE equipment during the ARAKS EAST launch 15 of February 1975