Woman Sneaks Into Russian Rocket Plant, Takes Photos

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Lana Sator may be something of a real-life Lara Croft (played in the film Tomb Raider by Angelina Jolie), in that she managed unauthorized access to very unique places -- in this case, a Russian liquid-fueled rocket plant. Sator apparently first studied the plant, NPO Energomash Academician, located on the outskirts of Moscow, from the outside -- both online and on foot before gaining access through a fence. The plant is an active facility owned by a company (NPO) that has participated in some of the leading rocket activities of our time.

Sator's online blog postings about her unauthorized experiences include amazing photographs (click the image) and have elicited letters from authorities warning her to stop posting them. A recent Sator blog post gives thanks in part to NPO for its (loosely translated) "irresponsible approach to the protection of its plant." Sator described her entry as facilitated by repairs being made to a fence at the facility's perimeter and open doors. Sator appears to argue that if the fence is not intact, and doors are not secured, then, by law, entry can not be considered trespassing. Her motives appear to be a long-time dream to see the inside of the plant and climb the tower used to ventilate exhaust during rocket tests. It seems her adventure provoked "unforgettable feelings" that "make life worth living." She writes about crossing the expanse of the plant in poetic terms; "Silence. Beauty. Snow falls... ." And her photography reveals as much. Click on the image at right to reach Sator's blog and photo gallery of her unauthorized tour of the NPO Energomash facility.