Scientist Golubkin accused of submitting reports to the HEXAFLY-INT coordinator
Researcher at the Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute named after V.I. Zhukovsky, MIPT professor Valery Golubkin, who was accused of high treason in April of this year, provided some details of his criminal case. RBC quotes his letter from the Lefortovo pre-trial detention center.
As the professor said, the criminal case was opened “in connection with participation in research on an international scientific project to develop the concept of a high-speed passenger aircraft.” We are talking about the project HEXAFLY-INT (High-speed Experimental Fly Vehicles) – an experimental civil aircraft.
Research on this project began in 2014 and ended in 2019, involving scientists from eight countries, including Russia. The project was supervised by the European Space Agency (ESA). The target of HEXAFLY-INT was to be an aircraft capable of flying from Brussels to Tokyo in two hours, its cruising speed was declared at 5000-6000 km / h.
Golubkin writes that he participated in the project under an open program agreed with the Ministry of Industry and Trade. Due to the fact that all the results of work within the framework of HEXAFLY-INT were initially publicly available, the scientist did not agree with the charges brought against him. “There was no corpus delicti in my actions, so I rejected the investigator's offer to plead guilty,” the physicist notes. He separately stressed that he did not feel pressure from the investigator after his arrest, but he made it clear to the scientist that a confession would facilitate the work on the case.
On the website of the Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute. Zhukovsky has articles about experiments in the framework of HEXAFLY-INT authored by Golubkin and his immediate supervisor Anatoly Gubanov. The latter was detained by the FSB in early December 2020, and he was also accused of treason. Golubkin says in a letter that the only evidence of his guilt is the testimony of Gubanov, who made a deal with the investigation. “After the arrest of Gubanov, my arrest was only a matter of time – I understood this, since during the search I was warned that I might be next,” the scientist writes.
Golubkin's lawyer Ivan Pavlov on the Telegram channel said that Golubkin in November 2018 handed over reports on the work on the supersonic liner project to the HEXAFLY-INT coordinator Johan Stilant from ESA.
The investigation considers the employee of the European agency to be the “contact” of the Russian. Stylant is an ESA engineer, aerodynamics and hydrodynamics specialist, himself a native of Belgium and also a professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the Catholic University of Leuven. Stilant has many publications in scientific journals with a fairly high level of citation (25 according to the Hirsch index), his articles were published in Russia, including in collaboration with Golubkin and other employees of TsAGI.
Golubkin in the letter indicates that he passed information to Stilant on the orders of his leader. It contained only reports on research in the framework of HEXAFLY-INT, and the Russian himself did not have access to state secrets as part of his work. The physicist claims that head cases against scientists are a “modern trend” that not only offends human dignity, but also poses a real threat to the country's security. The accused of treason notes that such criminal trials actually decapitate national science, lead to a “brain drain” abroad, and refusal of researchers to work in the framework of international cooperation.
Pavlov wrote back in August that Golubkin's arrest was connected with his participation in HEXAFLY-INT. In the last message, the lawyer clarified that in the materials of the investigation, available to the defense, a certain conclusion of specialists from Roskosmos, the State Missile Center named after V.I. Academician Makeev and the Military Space Academy. Mozhaisky from the summer of 2020 (that is, until the arrest of Gubanov and Golubkin). The experts had to assess whether the materials submitted to them contain state secrets. The lawyers did not see the conclusion itself.