"Research Institute of Space and Aviation Materials" was established in 1987. This was the time of the beginning of the collapse of Russian science and production. The founders of the Institute Aristov Vasily Fedorovich and Anikin Vladimir Mikhailovich at that time worked in the State Research Institute of Chemical-Photographic Industry (Pereslavl branch). State funding of this institute was initially sharply reduced, as a result of which the need arose to reduce the majority of employees, and since 1990 funding has completely ceased and subsequently the Pereslavl branch of GosNIIKhimPhotoProekt was completely liquidated and all its employees were laid off.
In order to keep the opportunity to engage in science Aristov V.F. and Anikin V.M. create in 1987 the scientific and production cooperative "Thought", which in 1996 was reorganized into CJSC Scientific Research Institute of Space and Aviation Materials (CJSC NIIKAM). From 1987 to 2016, the institute did not receive funding from the State budget of the USSR or Russia.
The first materials of the institute were developed during the collapse of the USSR. At that time, the entire production of materials for screen-vacuum thermal insulation of spacecraft was concentrated in Latvia (Riga) at SKB “Vacuum Coatings” (development) and “Sidrab” (production). After Latvia gained independence, the production of these materials was discontinued and the Russian space industry was left without a number of heat-shielding and heat-insulating materials. At that time, science was not funded, and it was impossible to get funds for the development of these materials, so the institute received an advance payment for the supply of materials under the “honest word”. For this little money, non-working equipment was collected, which was thrown out by the enterprises of Pereslavl - Zalessky and Moscow. On their own, this equipment was “revived” and redone, developed technology and produced the ordered materials.
The NIIKAM complex includes scientific laboratories (institute), and a space materials production plant. At our factory, we produce only what is developed (and usually patented) at our institute. The main owner and CEO at the institute and the factory is one - Vasily Fedorovich Aristov.
The Institute collaborates with enterprises in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, the USA, France, and India on the development, manufacture, and supply of modern materials for spacecraft.
To date, NIIKAM has developed and mastered the production of more than 90 different materials for automatic spacecraft and manned spacecraft.