My profile in IEEE Spectrum

(jpg version)




I also wrote, illustrated and designed a book on the history of Gagarin's pioneering mission:


Pioneering Vostok missions in color!

My contribution to Partners in Space focused on the Russian side of the International Space Station project:


I am a writer, artist and 3D animator specialized in history of space exploration. Native of Moscow, then Soviet Union, I attended School of Journalism at Moscow State University. Upon moving to the United States in 1993, I earned bachelor's degree from Syracuse University's Newhouse School of Public Communications. Currently, I contribute space reporting to the Popular Mechanics, the Air & Space Smithsonian and the Aerospace America magazines and publish this web site -- a unique collection of news, historical information, photography and interactive graphics on space exploration. In 2013, I completed writing and illustrating a large-format book on the history of Russian plans for space exploration published by Apogee Prime.

Back in Moscow, I worked as a contributing editor for the Astronomy and Cosmonautics series of Moscow Polytech Society and later as an aviation and space reporter for Nezavisimaya Gazeta, the first independent daily in Russia. I visited all leading Russian space centers including Baikonur Cosmodrome and interviewed many legendary personalities in the Russian space program, among them Yuri Semenov and Alexei Leonov.

My articles, artwork, animations and photography appeared in practically every major space publication around the world, and many general news media outlets including:

  • Aerospace America
  • Air & Cosmos, France
  • Air & Space Smithsonian, US
  • BBC, UK (See online samples: Lunar base)
  • Bild am Sonntag, Germany
  • Channel I Ostankino, Russian television
  • Discover, US
  • Financial Times, UK
  • Flieger Revue, Germany
  • Focus BBC, UK
  • GEO, Germany
  • Gong, Germany
  • IEEE Spectrum, US
  • Illustreret Videnskab, Denmark
  • Journal of the British Interplanetary Society, UK
  • Nonproliferation Review, UK
  • Popular Mechanics, Russian edition
  • Science, US
  • Science and Technology Trends, Quarterly Review, Japan
  • Space Illustrated, US
  • Spaceflight, UK
  • Space Travel Guidebook, Random House, Japan
  • Süddeutsche Zeitung, Germany
  • Technology Review, US
  • Twenty-First Century Bimonthly, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, China
  •, US
  • X Prize Cup and Google Earth

I also provided commentary and was quoted by numerous publications, including:

The New York Times

The Washington Post, (2)

The Los Angeles Times

Nature magazine

Science magazine

Popular Mechanics (2)

...also, see my interview with Space Safety magazine



The Russian Ancestors of SpaceX's New Dragon

Another Disaster for Russia’s Space Workhorse

Did the Soviets Actually Build a Better Space Shuttle?

The Hidden History of the Soviet Satellite-Killer

Inside Russian spacesuit factory

Russia Is Building an Inflatable Space Module of its Own

Photo-essay from Moscow's Air and Space Show, MAKS-2013

Inside Russia’s Spectacular Rocket Disintegration


Air and Space

Journalistic portfolio

"Not a Woman’s Profession"

The Spaceport in Siberia

Space cooperation: A U.S. bargaining chip in the Ukraine standoff?

Planes, Ships…and Caspian Monsters

Valentina Tereshkova’s Journal Sheds New Light on Her Historic Spaceflight

Scenes from MAKS-2013 Airshow

Disaster in Xichang ("The best long-form story on the web!" See Feb. 12, 2013, entry:

Mission Possible (Preview of the Phobos-Grunt mission)

Lunar Clipper (With rich tourists traveling to Earth orbit, can a cruise around the moon be far behind?)

The rest of the rocket scientists (Story of the German rocket team in USSR)

Tsiolkovsky (Biography of the Russian space pioneer)

Fallen Star (How Mir came down)

Copies of published articles are available in PDF format upon request



What would Mars probe failure mean for Russian space?

Russia, India plan return to the Moon

China considers big rocket power

Russian future ship to leave the drawing board

Difficult rebirth for Russian space science

Russia to resume ISS construction

Russia plots return to Venus

Crunch time for Russia Mars probe

Russia 'to save its ISS modules'

Russia mulls rocket power 'first'

Russia to unveil spaceship plans

Russia to approve new Moon rocket

Why did the USSR build a "copy" of the space shuttle?

Forgotten cradle of the space age

Future Russian-European spacecraft (3D artwork, consulting)


Aerospace America

Collateral Damage: Impacts of Russian-Ukrainian conflict extend beyond the here and now



Russia's Post-Shuttle Space Plans


The Back Story

Russia Reveals Vision for Manned Spaceflight

Russian Return to a Martian Moon

Russia to Delay Martian Moon Mission

Europe to Join Russia in Building Next Space Shuttle

Highlights of the 2005 Paris Air Show

Russians Propose A New Space Shuttle

U.S.-Russian Space Cooperation in Doubt

Saving the station (The prospects and challenges of the International Space Station)

Can Russia Fill NASA’s shoes? (The station outlook after the Columbia tragedy)

Rockets R' Us (A review of Russia's rocket fleet)

Arianespace Picks Up the Pieces (Interview with Clayton Mowry, President of Arianespace)

Russia gives International Space Station a lift

Taking tourists for a ride (in space) (A look at the Russian suborbital tourist cruiser)

US Rocket with Russian engine gets to work (Inaugural Atlas-V launch)

Russia’s Nuclear Submarine Wastes Still Far From Secure


Space News

Industry Insiders Foresaw Delay of Russia’s Phobos-Grunt




I work to inform general public, as well as policy makers and aerospace industry professionals on developments and trends in the Russian space program and about other space-related issues:


Space Security 2014: Implementation and Compliance

A Conference at the United Nations Insitute for Disarmament Research, UNIDIR, Geneva, Switzerland, March 19-20, 2014.


“Russia’s Space Plans”

Secure World Foundation, Washington, D.C., November 2011



I regularly appear as a guest on various TV and radio programs around the world, including Russia Today, the Voice of Russia, CNN Next, CNN International's Foreign Correspondents, BBC, German Public Radio, Voice of America, France 25, and on various other radio and TV shows.


The Voice of Russia:

Prospects for methane-fueled rockets

Uphill battle for Phobos-Grunt

The last launch

Yuri Gagarin: First man in Space


The Space Show with Dr. David Livingston:

Today and tomorrow of the Russian space program


John Batchelor's HOTEL MARS radio show:

Proton's return to flight, (October 2013)

October 2013

August 2013



Space Station Mir, N1 Moon rocket, Soyuz spacecraft, Venera-75 spacecraft





In the morning fog at Gagarin's pad of Baikonur Cosmodrome, witnessing the launch of the first expedition to the International Space Station, October 2000.

Inside the Assembly and Testing Building, MIK, at Site 31 at Baikonur Cosmodrome, during the preparations for the launch of the European Cluster spacecraft, July 2000.

On the assembly floor at the Baikonur Cosmodrome before the launch of the first space tourist to the International Space Station in April 2001.

With Yuri Grigoriev, Deputy Designer General of RKK Energia inside the company's Control and Testing Station, KIS, in Korolev, Russia.

At the Launch Complex 39A of the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, with the Space Shuttle Atlantis on the launch pad.

Next to the flown and now lost Buran orbiter (top) and its full-scale prototype at Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan.

In the clean room of RKK Energia processing building at Site 254, Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan.

Working in the field. See what can be achieved with a simple camera. Moscow Aviation Institute

Searching for a mysterious Soviet lunar lander at the demo room of the Moscow Aviation Institute.

At the helm of the Almaz (OPS-4) military space station at the NPO Mash development center in Reutov, Russia.

A unique "selfie" inside of a gigantic thermal testing chamber of the NIIKhIMMash research facility near Sergiev Posad, in the company of Vladimir Galyaev, a leading specialist. The fuselage of the Buran orbiter, Mir space station and other spacecraft went through rigorous trials here. Giant mirrors inside the facility are used to imitate solar radiation.

Near the monument to the legendary Soviet rocket designer Mikhail Yangel on the grounds of KB Yuzhnoe development center. Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine.

First journalist on the closed Gorodomlya Island in the Seliger Lake, which was a home of the German rocket team in the USSR in 1946-1953.

Discussing the Soyuz spacecraft on CNN's NEXT.

Discussing NASA return to the Moon on CNN's Foreign Correspondents.


"Piloting" a full-scale simulator of the Kliper winged reusable orbiter at RKK Energia's Control and Test Station, KIS, in Korolev, Russia.


Navigating the Kourou River through the rain forest of French Guiana near the European space launch site in the equatorial South America.


Next to the very descent module of the Vostok spacecraft which carried Yuri Gagarin into space and back to Earth during the historic first human mission into space on April 12, 1961.