|Mitrofan Ivanovich Nedelin|
|Born||November 9, 1902
Borisoglebsk, Voronezh Governorate, Russian Empire
|Died||24 October 1960
|Buried at||Kremlin Wall Necropolis|
|Service/branch||Artillery, Strategic Rocket Forces|
|Years of service||1920 — 1960|
|Rank||Chief marshal of the artillery|
|Commands held||13th Artillery Regiment (1939-40)
Artillery 160th Rifle Division (1940-41)
4th Anti-Tank Brigade (1941)
Artillery 18th Army (1941)
Artillery 37th Army (1941-43)
Artillery 56th Army (1943)
V Artillery Corps (1943)
Artillery South-Western Front (1943)
Artillery 3rd Ukrainian Front (1943-45)
Artillery Southern Soviet Group of Forces (1945-46)
Chief Artillery Directorate (1948-50)
CinC Artillery (1950-52, 1953-55)
Deputy Minister of War (1952-53)
Deputy Minister of Defence (1955-60)
CinC Strategic Missile Force (1959-60)
|Battles/wars||Russian Civil War,
Spanish Civil War,
Winter War,
World War II
|Awards||Hero of the Soviet Union|
Mitrofan Ivanovich Nedelin (rus. Митрофа́н Ива́нович Неде́лин) (November 9, 1902, Borisoglebsk, Voronezh Governorate — October 24, 1960, Baikonur Cosmodrome) was a Soviet military commander who served as Chief marshal of the artillery, a position he held from May 8, 1959 until his untimely death. A member of Communist Party from 1924, he was honored as a Hero of the Soviet Union on Apr 28, 1945 for his service in the Second World War.
Nedelin joined the Red Army in 1920. In 1939 he was appointed to command 13th Artillery Regiment. Then in 1940 he was appointed to command the artillery of 160th Rifle Division. In 1941 he was appointed commander of first 4th Anti-Tank Brigade, then the artillery of 18th Army, and then the artillery of 37th Army where he stayed until 1943, then he moved to command the artillery of 56th Army. In 1943 he was appointed Deputy Commanding Officer of the artillery of the Northern Caucasian Front. From there he moved to command V Artillery Corps, and then the artillery of the South-western Front, and then the artillery of the 3rd Ukrainian Front where he stayed from 1943 to 1945, playing an especially important part in the capture of Hungary.
In 1946 he became chief of staff of the chief artillery directorate of the Red Army, and then chief of staff of artillery, and then Deputy Commander in Chief of Artillery. He became head of the chief artillery directorate of the Soviet Army in 1948, and Commander in Chief of Artillery from 1950 to 1952 and again from 1953 to 1955.
Nedelin inadvertently played a key role in ushering in the space age by concluding that rockets were the ideal means to deliver a nuclear warhead to USA instead of bombers and ordered Sergei Korolev to develop the massive R-7 ICBM to carry a large warhead to the USA. This rocket and its derivatives, while never an effective ICBM, was powerful enough to launch Sputnik and then Vostok manned space vehicles into orbit enabling the USSR to beat the US to space.
Nedelin was killed in a test rocket explosion on October 24, 1960 at Baikonur Cosmodrome along with approximately 120 other victims in an incident that became known as the Nedelin catastrophe. The tragedy was covered up by the Soviet authorities, with details only emerging in the 1990s. Until then, Nedelin's death was officially listed as having occurred in a plane crash.
Honours and awards
- "Rockets and people" – B. E. Chertok, M: "mechanical engineering", 1999. ISBN 5-217-02942-0 (Russian);
- «Korolev: Facts and myths» - J. K. Golovanov, M: Nauka, 1994, - ISBN 5-02-000822-2;
- "Testing of rocket and space technology - the business of my life" Events and facts - A.I. Ostashev, Korolyov, 2001.;
- «A breakthrough in space» - Konstantin Vasilyevich Gerchik, M: LLC "Veles", 1994, - ISBN 5-87955-001-X;
- "Look back and look ahead. Notes of a military engineer" - Rjazhsky A. A., 2004, SC. first, the publishing house of the "Heroes of the Fatherland" ISBN 5-91017-018-X.
- A.I. Ostashev, Sergey Pavlovich Korolyov - The Genius of the 20th Century — 2010 M. of Public Educational Institution of Higher Professional Training MGUL ISBN 978-5-8135-0510-2.
- "Unknown Baikonur" - edited by B. I. Posysaeva, M.: "globe", 2001. ISBN 5-8155-0051-8
- "Rocket and space feat Baikonur" - Vladimir Порошков, the "Patriot" publishers 2007. ISBN 5-7030-0969-3
- "Bank of the Universe" - edited by Boltenko A. C., Kiev, 2014., publishing house "Phoenix", ISBN 978-966-136-169-9
- Mitrofan Ivanovich Nedelin //Family history
- The newspaper Moskovsky Komsomolets // The disaster at Baikonur (Russian)
- The official website of the city administration Baikonur // Baikonur commemorated a test rocket and space technology.(Russian)
- The official website of the city administration Baikonur - Honorary citizens of Baikonur
In other media
- Marshall Nedellin appears as a character in the 2005 BBC docudrama TV series, Space Race. He is played by English actor Tim Woodward.
- Nedelin Disaster // RussianSpaceWeb.com (English)
- Memoirs of Nikita Khrushchev, Volume 2, Reformer 1945-64, by Nikita Sergeevich Khrushchev and Sergeĭ Khrushchev, pub Penn State Press, 2006, ISBN 0-271-02861-0, p817.
- The Generals of WWII – Nedelin
Media related to Mitrofan Nedelin at Wikimedia Commons