A SOVIET space rocket has been left to rot near a desert in an abandoned ship graveyard.
The rusting 2,650-ton Energia M rocket was once envisioned as the USSR’s lethal weapon that could take down Nasa’s space program.
Picture of the Energia M rotting away inside Russia’s Baikonur Cosmodrome launch facility[/caption]
A top view shows the nose cone of the rocket covered in bird poop.[/caption]
Rusty chains dangling around the rocket give away how long the rocket has been abandoned for[/caption]
A picture of the rocket showing its decaying boosters[/caption]
The sad remains of the warehouse where the rocket sits abandoned[/caption]
The sad remains of what was once thought to be the future of Russian space exploration was abandoned to the elements decades ago.
Several structures surrounding the rocket have been reduced to rubble, depicting the sorry state of the once-blooming launch pad.
Massive exposed pipes and metal chains in the cavern can be seen dangling inside the creepy warehouse.
Although the Baikonur Cosmodrome launch facility remains active, large parts of the grounds are now little more than a graveyard for the relics of the Soviet Union’s space program.
The USSR initially launched the project in what can only be described as a battle of egos with America, and their space program.
In the ’70s the Soviets began to develop the rocket Energia in a bid to rival Nasa‘s Saturn V launch vehicle – which was responsible for the Apollo mission to the moon.
The rocket was designed to serve as a “heavy-lift expendable launch system” and booster for the Soviet Buran space shuttle – the Soviet version of Nasa aircraft.
In 1993, a prototype of the rocket called “Energia M” was placed inside the hanger of the Baikonur Cosmodrome launch facility.
As a mockup, the rocket was not meant to be fuelled or launched into space – but experts said they were close to being able to do so.
I must say that the scale of this bloody rocket is enormous. I could not comprehend the rocket that cost millions was rusting away just like that
But with the collapse of the Soviet Union, and Russia’s crumbling economy in the ’90s, Boris Yeltsin was forced to cancel the space program entirely.
And for more than 30 years, the rocket has been left untouched inside the abandoned hanger of the Russian space pad.
Now, the machine and its cavern have become an adventure spot for photographers and urban explorers.
In 2022, photographer Greg Abandoned spotted the warehouse inside the launch facility while adventuring through the wilderness.
The explorer was left awestruck seeing the mammoth size of the rocket – and the sorry state of the hanger.
He said: “I must say that the scale of this bloody rocket is enormous.
“Standing there at the bottom and looking up at this monster was a remarkable experience.
“I could not comprehend the rocket that cost millions was rusting away just like that.”
Greg also discovered two Soviet space shuttles in an adjacent hanger.
One of them was called Ptichka which was meant to go to space at some point in the future but never left Earth.
The other one was a test vehicle that was never meant to fly.
To date both the spacecraft, along with the rocket, remain marooned in the hangar, providing a stark symbol of the decline of the Soviet Space program.
Other Soviet space shuttles, like Ptichka, have also been relegated to collecting dust[/caption]
The eerie hanger where the shuttle was left abandoned[/caption]
They may have survived the Cold War, but they’ve been destroyed by time[/caption]
Now, the abandoned spacecraft hangar has become a playground for adventurers[/caption]