Znamensk, Astrakhan Oblast

Snamensk (Russian Знаменск; earlier Kapustin Yar -1, Russian Капустин Яр -1) is a city in the north of Russia's Astrakhan Oblast. She has (October 14, 2010 Status ) 29 401 inhabitants. and is located about 320 km north- west of the regional capital Astrakhan and 90 km east of Volgograd on the left bank of the Akhtuba. While extending the marshy Volga or Achtubawiesen the south and west, is located in a northeasterly direction almost uninhabited semi-desert and the Kazakh border.


From the military use to a new city

The emergence and development of the city is inextricably linked with the development of the first Soviet rockets. In 1946, the Army transferred the line Major General Vasily Ivanovich Wosnjuk ( Василий Иванович Вознюк ) the installation of a ballistic missile test site on the surface Kapustin Yar. With the construction of the first launch site was built a barracks and a little later the first log cabins were added to the families of scientists and other civilians. So was 1947 the first Soviet space rocket successfully stand out from here. This was an assembled under the victorious power Soviet Union in the Soviet-occupied zone of Germany A4 rocket. The following year, in 1948 launched the R-1, a replica of the German A4. The missile launch site was expanded to a spaceport for the race the conquest of space between the Soviet Union and the United States. Opened in 1954, the military administration the first kindergarten and the first school building in the village, followed by further residential and office buildings. The infrastructure was expanded, so that finally had been created for space travel here the material and technical base. On January 11, 1962, the residential development was a decision of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the RSFSR city status with the official name Kapustin Yar. From this time, the city developed rapidly: more solid houses were built, a hospital, a library and a children's music school were opened. The streets were attached. In 1966, Kapustin Yar had already three schools and a cinema.

In addition to the civil use of launch ramps, numerous missiles of the Russian military were started for experimental purposes, from Kapustin Yar. Also, here stood out even satellite missiles and sounding rockets. As were shot from 1956 missiles with nuclear warhead from here for test purposes in the Kapustin Yar -1 government declared - as the official name - to a closed city. This status was lifted only in 1992.

On 27 January 1993 Kapustin Yar was renamed Snamensk. As a concession to the times and customs of a church building could be constructed in the city, the Alexander Nevsky Church. At the launch site of the first rocket, the city administration has erected a memorial obelisk.

On 19 June 2008 starting at 8:36 CEST clock for the first time since 1999 that a Russian carrier rocket of the type Kosmos- 3M from the Baikonur Kapustin Yar and successfully promoted two commercial satellites into a 800 km high in orbit.


The following overview shows the evolution of populations of Snamensk.

Sources: Census data


Snamensk located on the side street of Volgograd on Akhtubinsk to Astrakhan, and on the railway line Volgograd -Astrakhan.

Sons and daughters of the town

  • Valery Tokarev (* 1952), Russian cosmonaut