Sharing a Miscellaneous Indrajal at 50th anniversary of the first human space flight & 30th anniversary of the space shuttle flights.
People have been dreaming of going into space for centuries. Russia, formerly the Soviet Union, has long been at the forefront of the space frontier, beginning 50 years ago with the historic Oct. 4, 1957 launch of Sputnik - the world's first artificial satellite.
1st Human in Space: On April 12 1961, aboard the Vostok 3KA-3 (Vostok 1), Soviet spaceman & pilot Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin (March 9, 1934 - March 27, 1968) circled Earth at a speed of 27,400 kilometers per hour, and then parachuted to a landing 108 minutes later in a Russian field. At the highest point, Gagarin was about 327 kilometers above Earth.
On the eve of the 50th anniversary of human space flight, Russia sent a fresh crew to the International Space Station. The Soyuz FG rocket carrying the Soyuz TMA-21 (named Gagarin) spacecraft with a crew of three lifted off from Site 1 in Baikonur Cosmodrome on April 5, 2011, at 02:18:20 Moscow Summer Time. The vehicle departed from the same facility, which hosted the historic launch of Yuri Gagarin and the blastoff of the world's first artificial satellite. After a nine-minute powered flight, Soyuz TMA-21 entered orbit safely, the docking of the Soyuz TMA-21 spacecraft with the MIM-2 Poisk module of the International Space Station took place on April 7, 2011, at 03:09:17 Moscow Time.
2nd Human in space: The accomplishment was a serious blow to American pride. Less than a month after Gagarin's flight - on May 5 1961, Freedom 7 (the first piloted Mercury spacecraft No. 7) carrying Alan B. Shepard, Jr. (Nov 18, 1923 - July 21, 1998), was launched from Cape Canaveral by Mercury Redstone (MR3) launch vehicle. It was the first American space flight involving human beings. He reached a speed of 8160 kilometers per hour and his flight lasted 14.8 minutes only. At the highest point, he was about 187 km kilometers above Earth.
Sergei Pavlovich Korolev (December 30, 1907 - January 14, 1966), sometimes spelled "Korolyov," is considered the father of the Soviet space program. Largely due to the efforts of Korolev, the former Soviet Union became the first nation to put a satellite into orbit around the Earth, send a person into space, and land an unpiloted spacecraft on the moon.
Dr. Wernher Magnus Maximilian Freiherr von Braun (March 23, 1912 - June 16, 1977) is considered as the father of USA space program. Without his efforts; US couldn’t be just inches back from Soviet Union & finally winning Human landing at the Moon.
As of April 5, 2010, a total of 517 humans from 38 countries have gone into space according to the FAI guideline, (523 people have qualified when including the Department of Defense classification). Of those totals, 3 people completed only a sub-orbital flight, 514 people reached Earth orbit, 24 traveled beyond low Earth orbit and 12 walked on the Moon. Space travelers have spent over 29,000 person-days (or a cumulative total of over 77 years) in space including over 100 person-days of spacewalks.
At present Russia, USA & China have capability sending into space & returning safe only. 5 more countries: India (2016), Iran (2017), European Union ESA (2020), Japan (2025) & Romania (to be announced) are planning to join this elite club.
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Scanned by Anurag Dixit.
Edited by me.
All thanks & credits go to Anurag.
For more details, read:
Yuri Gagarin (wikipedia)
Sergei Korolev (wikipedia)
Wernher Von Braun (wikipedia)
Soviet Space Program (wikipedia)
Spaceflight Records (wikipedia)
List of space exploration milestones 1957-1969 (wikipedia)
First satellites of countries (wikipedia)