This answer notes that Voskhod:

...added a small solid-fuel rocket to the parachute lines. It fired as the descent module neared touchdown, providing a softer landing.

How exactly did they safely and reliably add a "solid-fuel rocket to the parachute lines"? I'm thinking that the rocket's exhaust could burn and sever the line directly below, defeating the purpose.

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    $\begingroup$ Rockets pulling on lines have long been a thing. Check out the unbelievable Stanley Yankee ejection system. youtu.be/8Yw8g1Soigk?t=45 $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 0:17
  • $\begingroup$ @OrganicMarble enjoying the video, made my morning! $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 0:40
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    $\begingroup$ An engineer from Stanley gave a presentation to our aerospace engineering society when I was in college. I've never forgotten it! $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 0:42

1 Answer 1


I found a diagram that explains it better than words. The landing rocket module was at the base of the parachute lines, not above them:

enter image description here

The linkage appears to be hinged, but I'm guessing it's a solid piece of metal rather than easily-burned fiber.

According to Space Biology & Medicine: Space and its Exploration, the capsule would be falling at 7-8 m/s (~25 fps) on the parachutes, and the rocket would slow it to 3-5 m/s (~13 fps), so impact would have been survivable, if not pleasant, if the rockets didn't activate for any reason.

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    $\begingroup$ Great diagram!! $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 0:44
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    $\begingroup$ "Mechanical altimeter" - So a stick that pokes into the ground? $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 10:08
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    $\begingroup$ Hey, it was good enough for the Apollo LM... $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 10:56
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    $\begingroup$ @MarkusAppel Presumably. But, being certified for space flight, it would have been a very expensive stick. $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 14:55
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    $\begingroup$ Hopefully any surface soft enough to avoid triggering the altimeter would be soft enough to safely land on without the rockets. $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 15:23

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