A full length feature film titled "Salyut 7: The Story of a Feat" is currently being produced in Russia. The film is based on the daring mission of Soyuz T-13, flown by Soviet cosmonauts Vladimir Dzanibekov and Viktor Savinikh, to resuscitate the failed Salyut 7 space station. It has been released on 12 October 2017
The Russian Apollo 13 mission
Something was seriously wrong on board Salyut 7. But Moscow officials kept lying about the situation, even made the crew take off their warm clothing during live TV broadcasts to Earth to conceal the true conditions. After the magnificent rescue by the crew and Mission Control, nobody got any credit in public because that would have been a humiliating admission to the original lying. Those of us who wrote what we had figured out was happening, and expressed admiration for the courage and skills of the Russians who succeeded in saving the station, made many friends within the Soviet space program. It was years before the Russian press told the full story, it took the collapse of the Soviet regime.
February 11, 1985, Salyut 7 fell silent and unresponsive.
You can read the full story The little-known Soviet mission to rescue a dead space station. In short, On February 11, 1985, while Salyut 7 was in orbit on autopilot awaiting its next crew, mission control (TsUP) noticed something was off. Station telemetry reported that there had been a surge of current in the electrical system, which led to the tripping of overcurrent protection and the shutdown of the primary radio transmitter circuits. Without waiting for the specialists to arrive, or perhaps not bothering to call them in the first place, the controllers on the next shift decided to reactivate the primary radio transmitter. he controllers, acting against established tradition and procedures of their office, sent the command to reactivate the primary radio transmitter. Instantly, a cascade of electrical shorts swept through the station, and knocked out not only the radio transmitters, but also the receivers. At 1:20pm and 51 seconds on February 11, 1985, Salyut 7 fell silent and unresponsive.
Fly a repair crew to the station to fix it from the inside, manually.
On June 6, 1985, nearly four months after contact with the station had been lost, Soyuz T-13 launched with Vladimir Dzhanibekov as commander and Victor Savinikh as flight engineer. After two days of flight, the station came into view. The successful docking to the station was a great victory, and demonstrated for the first time in history that it was possible to rendezvous and dock with virtually any object in space, but it was early to celebrate.
Drama but success
On June 16—flight day 10 and two days after water supplies were initially supposed to run out—“Rodnik” was fully operational. There were finally enough working systems and enough supplies to continue the mission. Although the station itself now is gone, its legacy of triumph over adversity remains. Salyut 7 experienced some of the most serious problems of any station in the Salyut series, but while earlier stations were lost, the skill and determination of the designers, engineers, ground controllers, and cosmonauts of Salyut 7 kept the station flying. That spirit lives on today in the International Space Station, which has flown continuously for over 15 years. It too experiences systems failures, coolant leaks, other problems, but like their predecessors who worked on Salyut 7, the designers, engineers, ground controllers, cosmonauts, and astronauts exhibit that same determination to keep flying.