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Sergei Korolev facts for kids

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Sergei Korolyov
Сергей Королёв
SKorolow.jpg
Born
Sergey Pavlovich Korolev
Сергей Павлович Королёв

12 January [O.S. 30 December 1906] 1907
Zhitomir, Volhynian Governorate, Russian Empire
Died 14 January 1966(1966-01-14) (aged 59)
Resting place Kremlin Wall Necropolis, Moscow
Nationality Russian, Ukrainian
Education Kiev Polytechnic Institute, Bauman Moscow State Technical University
Occupation Rocket engineer, Chief Designer of the Soviet space program
Spouse(s) Ksenia Vincentini
Nina Ivanovna Kotenkova
Children 1
Military career
Allegiance Soviet Union
Service/branch Red Army
Years of service 1945–1952
Rank Polkovnik (colonel)
Signature Sergei Korolyov Signature.svg

Sergei Pavlovich Korolev or Sergey Pavlovich Korolyov (Russian: Сергей Павлович Королёв; IPA: [sʲɪrˈɡʲej ˈpavləvʲɪtɕ kərɐˈlʲɵf]; Ukrainian: Сергій Павлович Корольов; January 12 [O.S. December 30] 1907 – 14 January 1966) was a lead Soviet rocket engineer and spacecraft designer during the Space Race between the United States and the Soviet Union in the 1950s and 1960s. He is regarded by many as the father of practical astronautics. He was involved in the development of the R-7 Rocket, Sputnik 1, launching Laika, Belka and Strelka and the first human being, Yuri Gagarin, into space.

Although Korolev trained as an aircraft designer, his greatest strengths proved to be in design integration, organization and strategic planning. Arrested on a false official charge as a "member of an anti-Soviet counter-revolutionary organization" (which would later be reduced to "saboteur of military technology"), he was imprisoned in 1938 for almost six years, including some months in a Kolyma labour camp. Following his release he became a recognized rocket designer and a key figure in the development of the Soviet Intercontinental ballistic missile program. He later directed the Soviet space program and was made a Member of Soviet Academy of Sciences, overseeing the early successes of the Sputnik and Vostok projects including the first human Earth orbit mission by Yuri Gagarin on 12 April 1961. Korolev's unexpected death in 1966 interrupted implementation of his plans for a Soviet crewed Moon landing before the United States 1969 mission.

Before his death he was officially identified only as Glavny Konstruktor (Главный Конструктор), or the Chief Designer, to protect him from possible Cold War assassination attempts by the United States. Even some of the cosmonauts who worked with him were unaware of his last name; he only went by Chief Designer. Only following his death in 1966 was his identity revealed and he received the appropriate public recognition as the driving force behind Soviet accomplishments in space exploration during and following the International Geophysical Year.

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