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Site 81 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome is a launch site used, along with Site 200, by Proton rockets. It consists of two launch pads, areas 23 and 24. Area 24 is used for Proton-K and Proton-M launches, while Area 23 is inactive.

Site 81
Proton Zvezda.jpg
A Proton-K with the Zvezda Service Module of the International Space Station during launch from LC-81/23.
Launch siteBaikonur Cosmodrome
OperatorRVSN, VKS, RKA
Total launches188
Launch pad(s)2
Min / max
orbital inclination
49° – 99°
Site 81/23 launch history
First launch16 July 1965 (1965-07-16)
UR-500 / Proton 1
Last launch27 March 2004
Proton-K/DM-2 / Globus No.17L
Site 81/24 launch history
First launch22 November 1967
Proton-K/D / Soyuz 7K-L1 No.5L
Last launch13 July 2019
Proton-M/Briz-M / Blagovest-11L
Proton-M (active)

Several planetary probes have been launched from Site 81. Area 23 was used to launch Mars 3, Mars 4, Mars 6 and Venera 11, whilst Area 24 was used by Mars 2, Mars 5, Mars 7, Venera 9, Venera 10 and Venera 12. Several Luna probes were also launched from both areas.

The Zarya and Zvezda modules of the International Space Station, as well as Salyut 2, 3 and 5, and the Spektr and Priroda modules of Mir, were launched from Area 23. Area 24 was used to launch Salyut 1, 4 and 6.

On 2 July 2013, a Proton-M/DM-03 launched from Site 81/24 carrying three GLONASS navigation satellites. Immediately after liftoff, the rocket began to pitch over, and rolled out of control. The rocket fell close to the launch pad and exploded, the extent of any damage to Site 81 or the Baikonur Cosmodrome is unclear.


  • Wade, Mark. "Baikonur LC81/23". Encyclopedia Astronatica. Archived from the original on 2 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
  • Wade, Mark. "Baikonur LC81/24". Encyclopedia Astronatica. Archived from the original on 2 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-15.

Coordinates: 46°04′15″N 62°59′05″E / 46.07083°N 62.98472°E / 46.07083; 62.98472