Category Archives: Baikonur Cosmodrome

About 300 Russian servicemen to look for space flies in Kazakhstan


A rescue team of Russia’s Central Military District arrived in Kazakhstan Friday to secure the landing of the Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft with fruit flies on board. The fruit flies were bred during research of influence of zero gravity on multi-cellular organisms.

The press service of the Central Military District said the research is essential to further space exploration.

About 300 soldiers of the Central Military District will take part in the rescue operation. There are 14 Mi-8 helicopters, 2 An-26 aircraft and 6 rescue-evacuation cars.

It’s not the first experiment of zero gravity influence on multi-cellular organisms. Such organisms as geckos, silkworm eggs, dried seeds, fruit flies, and mushrooms were sent to space earlier.


Crews of ISS Moved to Baikonur


The primary and backup crews for the 39/40 long-duration mission aboard the International Space Station have left by air for the Baikonur spaceport from Chkalov airfield outside Moscow, an official at the Cosmonauts’ Training Centre told Itar-Tass.

Traditionally, the crews left for Baikonur by different planes for safety reasons. One of the planes carries the primary crew – cosmonauts of Roscosmos (Federal Space Agency) Alexander Skvortsov, Oleg Artemyev, as well as NASA astronaut Steve Swanson. The other Baikonur-bound plane is carrying backup pilots – Alexander Samokutyayev, Yelena Serova, and Barry Wilmore.

Prior to departure, the space crews met with journalists in the Zvyozdny Gorodok (Star City), and had a photo picture taken near the monument to Yuri Gagarin.

At Baikonur, the crews will go ahead with getting ready for the forthcoming orbital mission and inspect the spacesuits and a spaceship. The launch of the manned transport spaceship “Soyuz TMA-12M” is scheduled for March 26.

Russia Launches Freighter Rocket


Russia launched a freight rocket to the International Space Atation from Kazakhstan’s Baikonur space centre.

The Soyuz-U rocket, carrying a Progress M-19M cargo spacecraft, lifted off Wednesday. The launch was carried out as scheduled. The docking of the Progress M-19M with the International Space Station is set for 4.27 p.m. Moscow time April 26. The Progress M-19M will bring over 2.5 tons of cargo to the ISS, including payloads for the crew’s work, fuel for the space station, food supplies, water and oxygen for cosmonauts and astronauts.

The previous three Progress space freighters traveled to the orbital outpost under a “shortened” programme, delivering cargo in six hours rather than usual two days.

Russia to Launch Angara Rocket in 2014


The Russian military expects the first launch of a new Angara carrier rocket to take place in 2014. The maiden launch of the light-class Angara was previously expected in 2013.

The Angara rockets, designed to provide lifting capabilities of between 2,000 and 40,500 kg into low earth orbit, have been in development since 1995. The Angara rockets have a modular design similar to the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV), based on a common Universal Rocket Module (URM).

The main purpose of the Angara rocket family is to give Russia independent access to space. The rockets will reduce Russia’s dependence on the Baikonur space centre.

Russia to Make 14 Commercial Launches from Baikonur


Kazakhstan allowed Russia to make at least 14 commercial launches from the Baikonur Cosmodrome this year. Russia will use the launch to send 15 rockets into outer space. A Russian government source said the number was 14. Russia initially received permission to launch 12 Proton rockets, although it requested 17.

The final number is not lower than last year’s 14 blastoffs. Proton rockets are the Russian workhorse of choice for delivering satellites into orbit. The agreed quota is in addition to launches related to the International Space Station.

Russia pays $115 million a year to rent the Baikonur Cosmodrome for military and commercial satellite launches, in addition to carrying astronauts and freight to and the International Space Station.

Baikonur Dispute Ending


Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, said that they had agreed to end their dispute over the Baikonur Cosmodrome, which Russia rents from the Central Asian nation.

Most of Russia’s space launches take place at Baikonur, but it has recently experienced problems connected with the use of the facility. Russia pays $115 million per year to lease the Baikonur facility, once a Soviet property, and Kazakhstan determines the number of launches Russia is allowed. Russian space officials sought 17 launches this year, but Kazakh authorities are allowing only 12, citing possible environmental damage from rocket fuel.

Both presidents said that they had found common ground on the Baikonur issue, RIA-Novosti reported, citing the leaders. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said later that the media had “exaggerated” the situation that and it was a “working issue.”

Presidents Agree to End Baikonur Dispute


Kazakh President  Nursultan Nazarbayev and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, said that they had agreed to end their dispute over the Baikonur Cosmodrome, which Russia rents from the Central Asian nation.

Most of Russia’s space launches take place at Baikonur, but it has recently experienced problems connected with the use of the facility.

Russia pays $115 million per year to lease the Baikonur facility.

Russian space officials sought 17 launches this year, but Kazakh authorities are allowing only 12, citing possible environmental damage from rocket fuel.

Both presidents said that they had found common ground on the Baikonur issue.

Analysts said Kazakhstan is not interested in pressuring Russia on the Baikonur issue, as both countries are part of the customs union and Russia sees Kazakhstan as its main ally in Central Asia.