Eerie pictures show abandoned tanks, fighter jets and warships rotting away
Rows upon rows of tanks, the last Soviet-made locomotive and a unique invention are among the rusting objects captured in haunting images of abandoned military equipment from around the world.
At first glance, these boats, tanks and planes look ready for action, but in reality they are rotting.
St. Petersburg photographer and history buff, Dmitry Osadchy, has traveled through swamps, forests and deserts in more than 50 countries to reach closely guarded facilities that the public normally never sees.
The 38-year-old uses a drone to take his aerial photos and has traveled the world tracking down abandoned military aircraft and vehicles from his native Russia to the UAE since buying his first drone five years ago.
RUSSIA: A lun-class ekranoplan, designed to move troops and equipment quickly over bodies of water
RUSSIA: Rows upon rows of tanks
UAE: The Lockheed Tristar L-1011, wide-body passenger airliner that Osadchy describes as ‘perhaps the coolest abandoned plane I’ve ever seen’
‘I mainly started photographing ships, then sunken ships. Then I realized I was interested in photographing abandoned equipment,” he said.
‘Almost all equipment is not very accessible. You have to go to distant lands and then often walk through forests, swamps or deserts – even then it’s still quite far for the drone to fly,” Osadchy explained, adding that the facilities are “usually also closed or heavily guarded.” .
Between rows and rows of tanks and abandoned planes, Osadchy photographed what he called “the last and most beautiful Soviet locomotive” – the P36, which was nicknamed the “General.”
St. Petersburg photographer and history buff, Dmitry Osadchy, has traveled through swamps, forests and deserts in more than 50 countries to reach closely guarded facilities that the public normally never sees. Pictured: An abandoned plane in Russia
RUSSIA: Helicopters and planes rust on a disused runway
RUSSIA: On the right is ‘the last and most beautiful Soviet locomotive’, the P36, which was nicknamed ‘General’
Another interesting find was a lun-class ekranoplan, which was designed to quickly transport troops and equipment over bodies of water. Only one was built.
Reflecting on what appeals to him about the rusting machines, he said, “I enjoy looking at them. It’s hard to explain, but in this decay lies a kind of indescribable beauty that can’t be found anywhere else.
‘That’s why I’m attracted to abandoned places. It is the spirit of history and the unknown.’
RUSSIA: Rows of disintegrating helicopters
RUSSIA: A flooded rusty torpedo retriever has been in the waters off Kronstadt for years, Osadchy said. The same boat is depicted frozen in the ice in winter
RUSSIA: “Ten helicopters and two wingless An-2 carcasses rust in the dense forests of the Leningrad region,” Osadchy wrote on Instagram
This is the only lun class ekranoplan ever completed
The 38-year-old uses a drone to take his aerial photos as above, taken in Russia
UAE: The plane is part of the collection of Sheikh Hamad bin Hamdan Al Nahyan, Osadchy wrote on Instagram
RUSSIA: Sovremenny Class Destroyer waits to be scrapped near Saint Petersburg
RUSSIA: The guns of the Sovremenny Class Destroyer warship have been dismantled and the gun shafts covered with planks as it waits to be scrapped
RUSSIA: More helicopters rest peacefully in the forest
RUSSIA: On his Instagram, the photographer often complains about the amount of money spent on military machines that is now left to rust. “Russia’s gold and foreign exchange reserves,” he captioned this image
RUSSIA: A fighter plane lies in the bushes of a semi-abandoned military base not far from Saint Petersburg
RUSSIA: Rows and rows of tanks in the Russian snow
RUSSIA: An AH-8 military transport aircraft, the place of which has become ‘a place of pilgrimage for all drone pilots in [the] St Petersburg and Leningrad Region,” wrote Osadchy
Rows of tanks await repair at what Osadchy describes as ‘the largest tank cemetery in the European part of Russia’