Maneuver(redirected from Prague maneuver)
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a deliberate change in a spacecraft’s orbit, as a result of which the craft switches from one orbit (the initial orbit) to another (the final orbit).
Examples of maneuvers include transferring an artificial earth satellite from an inclined orbit to an equatorial orbit, launching a spacecraft toward the moon from an orbiting earth satellite, moving a lunar spacecraft into the orbit of a lunar satellite on its approach to the moon, and bringing two craft together. Particular cases include correcting the trajectory of a spacecraft and correcting the orbit of an artificial satellite. The most common method of carrying out a maneuver is called impulse maneuvering, where the transfer to the new orbit is accomplished by briefly starting the engine of the craft (once or, in complex cases, several times).
the movement of troops (or naval forces) during preparation for combat and in actual combat or in taking up a new operational axis, ordinarily involving a change in the previously assigned mission; the redirecting of weapons against the most important enemy objects (targets). There may also be maneuvers involving various technical equipment and matériel.
The objective of the maneuver is to create a more favorable grouping of forces and weaponry relative to the enemy in a particular segment of the terrain (region), along an axis, or in a theater of operations in order to defeat the enemy. According to their scale, maneuvers may be strategic, operational, or tactical, depending on the forces of the maneuvering troops and the missions that they are performing. Troop maneuvers are carried out by marching or transporting by rail, water, or air. When directly in the zone of combat action troops carry out maneuvers, depending on the situation, in battle, approach march, or march formation. The most typical forms of maneuvers in the course of combat actions are envelopment, outflanking, and retreat.
In ancient times and during the Middle Ages maneuvers were carried out within the battle area. The forces of the warring sides approached to a short distance and waged combat actions on comparatively small and primarily open segments of the terrain using column and other deep formations that were difficult to control and relatively immobile; heavy infantry was placed in the center and delivered a frontal attack. Maneuvers were carried out by the more mobile forces (light infantry, cavalry, and war chariots), which were set on the flanks and delivered strikes against the enemy flanks and rear. As firearms and artillery spread and were improved (17th century), troops began to carry out maneuvers during their approach to the field of battle before entering the zone of enemy artillery fire. In the wars of the feudal absolutist states (17th and 18th centuries), which were waged by comparatively small mercenary armies, an essential element was troop maneuvers on enemy lines of communication to cut off supplies, threaten the destruction of enemy armed forces, and win the war without waging battle. With the advent of mass armies in the 19th century, maneuvering forces and weaponry to concentrate them along the decisive axis became more important. The maneuver became a necessary condition in preparation for a general battle.
In the wars of the 20th century, which have taken place over enormous areas and involved armies with millions of troops, maneuvering with strategic and operational troop reserves (or naval forces) has become very important. As a result of the rapid development of new weapons, maneuvers with large masses of troops began to be carried out in World War 1(1914-18). During the Civil War of 1918-20 in Russia maneuvers with armies, including horse cavalry armies, were carried out. The maneuver was developed extensively during World War II (1939-45) and especially in the Great Patriotic War (1941-45). The development of motorized and mechanized armies significantly increased troop mobility on the field of battle and facilitated rapid maneuvering. Strategic and operational maneuvers with forces and weapons going from one theater of operations to another, from the rear to the front, and along the front were carried out to create groupings of forces during the preparation for new operations, to exploit successes, and to repulse counterstrikes in the course of the war. The Soviet armed forces developed maneuvering further with the objective of encircling and crushing the enemy (the Battle of Stalingrad of 1942-43, the Byelorussian operation of 1944, and many others). With the appearance of nuclear weapons, the refinement of conventional means of combat, and the increased level of technical equipment available to the troops (and naval forces), maneuvering with forces and weapons has become even more important in the course of the battle and operation and in the war as a whole.
N. N. FOMIN