Baikonur Cosmodrome

I found this 2001 Air & Space article during my research about Sputnik-1, the world’s first artificial satellite. It’s a very good first person account of a visit out to the Baikonur Cosmodrome and some of the run-ups and rituals for launching from there. The writer was there for a launch of the first permanent International Space […]

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Soviet AntiSatellite History

Popular Mechanics has a great post, The Hidden History of the Soviet Satellite-Killer, of the history of Soviet/Russian antisatellite (ASAT) systems.  Did you know the first successful satellite interception test probably happened a little over 45 years ago?  And the Soviets were the ones to do it? It’s a worthwhile read, if you’re interested.  For the rest […]

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Buran Buran: when notorious space programs die on planet earth, where do the buildings go? Rio?

Well, “the reflex”-ive answer is “Nowhere, of course!!”  But what does happen to space launch facilities once a program goes away?  Maybe some people “save a prayer” for them,” but in most of the modern world, facilities tend to be reused.  Space launch complex-6 (SLC-6) at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, is a good example […]

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Russian spacesuits, showers, and toilets for space operators

Popular Mechanics posted this article and these pictures of an old Soviet spacesuit factory.  According to the article, the Tomilino, Russia-based factory is still manufacturing things (but doesn’t really say spacesuits, specifically).  They apparently manufactured spacesuits for cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin–and for dogs named Laika, too. The toilet looks, um, functional. Related articles Skydiver record could affect spacesuit […]

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