Baikonur tour: Soyuz MS-15 launch
September turned out to be a cosmic month. More than 400 tourists, representatives of the mass media and space agencies from around the world visited cosmodrome Baikonur for the 70th, landmark launch of the Soyuz-FG rocket from the Gagarin’s Start. We witnessed the last start from Site 1, the modernization plan of the launch site is designed for three years and the next spacecraft launch will be relocated and also launched on new Soyuz-2.1a rockets.
The actual participants and curious observers of this large-scale event are united by their interest in the history of space exploration. The atmosphere in the city and at the cosmodrome during the days of the launching process is special and festive. Open-talks on our road trips showed the profound space knowledge of our tourists.
Three days passed quickly as we have been extremely busy with capturing the roll-out and installation of the rocket, its ”verticalization”, and the launch itself. In between these major events we took part in prelaunch events, excursions visited the most important facilities of the cosmodrome and the city of Baikonur — the Proton launch complex, the Energia launch center, visited museums and monuments, entered a full-size mock-up of Buran orbiter, passed by the alley of astronauts.
Baikonur is a special place where history is made. The steppe, where nothing grows, resembles Mars on Earth and has been wittily called the Rich Valley (Kaz.) For more than 60 years, it attracts to its expanses the smartest people of our time — brilliant constructors, outstanding scientists, engineers, cosmonauts, and today, also tourists.
Looking back at the traversed space path, we understand that nothing more ambitious and reliable has been created so far. It’s probably impossible to get closer to the cosmic theme than here. We wish a successful mission to the ISS-61 Crew and invite everyone to join our main tourist crew on December 6 to watch the preparation process for the launch of Progress MS-13 space cargo vehicle to ISS.