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An aerial view of Baikonur
|Country|| Kazakhstan |
|• Total||57 km2 (22 sq mi)|
|Elevation||100 m (300 ft)|
|• Density||630/km2 (1,600/sq mi)|
|Area code(s)||+7 73622|
|Vehicle registration||N, 11 ( ), 94 ( )|
Baikonur (Kazakh : Байқоңыр, Baiqoŋyr, بايقوڭىر; Russian : Байконур, romanized: Baykonur), formerly known as Leninsk (also, see Tyuratam), is a city of republic significance [ citation needed ] in Kazakhstan on the northern bank of the Syr Darya river, rented and administered by the Russian Federation. It was constructed to service the Baikonur Cosmodrome and was officially renamed Baikonur by Russian president Boris Yeltsin on December 20, 1995. During the Soviet period, it was sometimes referred to as Звездоград (Zvezdograd), Russian for 'Star City'.
In 2009, the population of Baikonur was 36,175 (2009 Census results), while in 1999, it was 28,776 (1999 Census results).
The rented area is an ellipse measuring 90 kilometres (56 mi) east to west by 85 km (53 mi) north to south, with the cosmodrome situated at the area's centre.
The original Baikonur (Kazakh for "wealthy brown", i.e. "fertile land with many herbs") is a mining town 320 kilometres northeast of the present location, near Dzhezkazgan in Kazakhstan's Karagandy Region. Starting with Vostok 1 in April 1961, the launch site was given this name to cause confusion and keep the location secret. (The original Baikonur's residents took advantage of the confusion by ordering and receiving many scarce materials before government officials discovered the deception.)Baikonur's railway station predates the base and retains the old name of Tyuratam. This was the original Soviet railway station (railhead) on the Moscow to Tashkent Railway that the Cosmodrome was initially named after.
The fortunes of the city have varied according to those of the Soviet or Russian space program and its Baikonur Cosmodrome. Foreign visitors need pre-approval from the Russian authorities to visit both the town of Baikonur itself and the Cosmodrome. Foreign visitors need to obtain a written approval which is completely separate from having a regular Russian Visa.
The Soviet government established the Nauchno-Issledovatel'skii Ispytatel'nyi Poligon N.5 (NIIIP-5), or Scientific-Research Test Range N.5 by its decree of 12 February 1955. The U-2 high-altitude reconnaissance plane found and photographed the Tyuratam missile test range (cosmodrome Baikonur) for the first time on 5 August 1957. See right for a composite satellite image of the early Tyuratam launch complex, the cosmodrome (30 May 1962).[ citation needed ]
Without the specifics of the sights, Baikonur's guide will not be complete. The town has unique ties with space, and hence the history of the rocket building and space binds all the sights in the area and the cosmodrome. However, there are only a few exceptions: old locomotive, an Orthodox Church and a new mosque.
Baikonur features a cold desert climate (BWk). Summers are hot with July highs averaging slightly over 34 °C (93 °F), while winters are cold, with longer periods of sustained below-freezing temperatures.
|Climate data for Baikonur|
|Average high °C (°F)||−5.6|
|Daily mean °C (°F)||−9.6|
|Average low °C (°F)||−13.6|
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||12|
South of city center, near the Syr Darya River there is a large park with several sports and amusement facilities. Among these is a ferris wheel, which is no longer in use. The park is located at coordinates.
The Baikonur Cosmodrome is a spaceport in an area of southern Kazakhstan leased to Russia.
Plesetsk Cosmodrome is a Russian spaceport located in Mirny, Arkhangelsk Oblast, about 800 km north of Moscow and approximately 200 km south of Arkhangelsk, the cosmodrome dates from 1957. Originally developed as an ICBM site for the R-7 missile, it also served for numerous satellite launches using the R-7 and other rockets. Its high latitude makes it useful only for certain types of launches, especially the Molniya orbits, so for much of the site's history it functioned as a secondary location, with most orbital launches taking place from Baikonur, in the Kazakh SSR. With the end of the Soviet Union, Baikonur became a foreign territory, and Kazakhstan charged $115 million usage fees annually. Consequently, Plesetsk has seen considerably more activity since the 2000s.
Tyuratam is a station on the main Moscow to Tashkent railway, located in Kazakhstan. The name is a word in the Kazakh language and means "Tóre's grave"; Tóre, or more formally, Tóre-Baba, was a noble, a descendant of Genghis Khan. Tyuratam is near the Baikonur Cosmodrome, a Russian – formerly Soviet – spaceport, and near the city of Baikonur, which was constructed to service the cosmodrome.
The Nedelin catastrophe or Nedelin disaster was a launch pad accident that occurred on 24 October 1960 at Baikonur test range, during the development of the Soviet R-16 ICBM. As a prototype of the missile was being prepared for a test flight, an explosion occurred when the second stage engine ignited accidentally, killing an unknown number of military and technical personnel working on the preparations. Despite the magnitude of the disaster, news of it was suppressed for many years and the Soviet government did not acknowledge the event until 1989. The disaster is named after Chief marshal of Artillery Mitrofan Ivanovich Nedelin, who was killed in the explosion. As commanding officer of the Soviet Union's Strategic Rocket Forces, Nedelin was head of the R-16 development program.
Svobodny was a Russian rocket launch site located approximately 15 km north of Svobodny, Amur Oblast. The cosmodrome was originally constructed as a launch site for intercontinental ballistic missiles called Svobodny-18. It was initially selected as a replacement for Baikonur Cosmodrome in the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic, which became independent as Kazakhstan after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. However the development of Svobodny was subsequently ended in 2007 in favour of a totally new space port, the Vostochny Cosmodrome.
Mikhail Kuzmich Yangel, was a Soviet engineer and the leading missile designer in the Soviet Union.
Sergey Alexandrovich Afanasyev was a Soviet engineer, space and defence industry executive, and the Minister of General Machine Building (1965–1983).
Gagarin's Start, also known as Baikonur Site 1 or Site 1/5 is a launch site at Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, used for the Soviet space program and now managed by Roscosmos.
The Vostochny Cosmodrome is a Russian spaceport above the 51st parallel north in the Amur Oblast, in the Russian Far East. It is intended to reduce Russia's dependency on the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The first launch took place on 28 April 2016 at 02:01 UTC. As of January 2021, six launch attempts have been made with five successes.
Baikonur Site 31, also known as Site 31/6 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome, in Kazakhstan, is a launch site used by derivatives of the R-7 Semyorka missile. From 2011 onwards, it was supposed to be the launch site for crewed Soyuz missions to the International Space Station, when launches switched from the Soyuz-FG launch vehicle to the Soyuz-2, which was unable to use the launch pad at Site 1/5. However, Site 1/5 has undergone modifications that allow the crewed ISS missions to be launched from it. Only a few crewed missions to the International Space Station (ISS) are launched from Site 31/6, when Site 1/5 is unavailable.
Mitrofan Ivanovich Nedelin was a Soviet military commander who served as Chief Marshal of the Artillery in the Soviet Armed Forces. A long-time member of the Red Army, Nedelin was a veteran of numerous wars and was honored as a Hero of the Soviet Union for his service during the Second World War. On 8 May 1959, Nedelin was promoted to Chief Marshal of the Artillery, and became an important figure in the development of ICBMs and the Space Race. On 24 October 1960, Nedelin was killed in an explosion at Baikonur Cosmodrome during the eponymous Nedelin catastrophe.
The National Space Agency of the Republic of Kazakhstan, also known as KazCosmos, or KazKosmos, is Kazakhstan's national space agency, and was officially established on 27 March 2007.
Andranik Gevondovich Iosifyan was a Soviet Armenian scientist in the field of electrical and aerospace engineering.
Arkady Ilyich Ostashev was a Soviet-Russian scientist, a mechanical engineer who participated in the launch of the sputnik, and then the first first cosmonaut. He was a Candidate of Technical Sciences, docent, laureate of the Lenin and state prizes, senior test pilot of missiles and space-rocket complexes of OKB-1 as well as a companion of Sergey Korolev, the head of the Soviet space program.
Yevgeny Ilyich Ostashev, 22 March 1924 – 24 October 1960, was the test pilot of rocket and space complexes, participant in the launch of the first artificial Earth satellite, head of the 1st control polygon NIIP-5 (Baikonur), Lenin prize winner, Candidate of Technical Sciences, engineer-podpolkovnik.
Site 41 was a complex of three launch pads at the Baikonur Cosmodrome originally built for flight testing of Intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBMs) using storable propellant. The need to develop such missiles was determined by low-tactical-technical and operational characteristics of the first Soviet ICBM R-7 created by the OKB-1 under the guidance of Sergei Pavlovich Korolev. May 13, 1959 by a special decree of the Central Committee of the CPSU and the CM of the design Bureau «Yuzhnoye» assigned to develop an Intercontinental ballistic missile on storable components of propellant, which has received designation R-16 and index – 8К64. Together with 41 platform built platform No. 42 – technical and No. 43 – for residing of serving military personnel and representatives of the industry.
Irtysh, also named Soyuz-5, formerly codenamed Fenix in Russian and Sunkar in Kazakh, is a planned Russian rocket that is being developed by JSC SRC Progress within the "Project Feniks". Initially it will replace the capability of Zenit-2 and Proton Medium, and in the future will serve as the base of a super heavy-lift launch vehicle rocket (Yenisei) to match the Energia/Buran capabilities. As of February 2021, Irtysh is expected to launch from the Baikonur Baiterek, the ex Zenit-2 launch site, in a partnership with the government of Kazakhstan, with a planned debut in late 2023.
Baikonur Krayniy Airport is the airport serving the city of Baikonur in Kazakhstan. It is located on the right bank of the Syr Darya river, 6 km west of Baikonur.
Konstantin Vasilyevich Gerchik was a Soviet military leader, Colonel-General of the Soviet Army, Professor of the Academy of Military Sciences of Russia, a veteran of the Great Patriotic War, and the second head of the Baikonur Cosmodrome (1958–1961).
The space program of Kazakhstan is originated from the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, when Kazakhstan declared their independence. The Kazakh space program consist of cosmonaut and satellite missions. The only launch site situated at Kazakhstan is Baikonur Cosmodrome, which is leased to Russia. The program is led by KazCosmos since 2007.
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