97

Yes, the three crew members of Soyuz 11: Georgy Dobrovolsky, Vladislav Volkov, and Viktor Patsayev. On 29 June 1971, their spacecraft undocked from Salyut 1, the first space station, to return to Earth. In the process, however, a breathing ventilation valve between the Soyuz's orbital and descent modules was accidentally loosened. This caused a fatal ...


49

The first people who landed in a different vessel than they took off in were Aleksei Yeliseyev and Yevgeny Khrunov. In January 1969, they took off in Soyuz-4 and returned in Soyuz-5. Crew exchange between directly docked spacecraft was the primary purpose of the Soyuz-4/Soyuz-5 mission. Mission details: The First Crew Exchange in Space --- The first ...


38

SHORT ANSWER Jodrell Bank's first 'coup', tracking Sputnik 1 in 1957 (without Soviet assistance), put it in the news and helped secure funding. It also led to a congratulatory telegram from the Soviets. After doubts were expressed about Luna 1 (Jan 1959) being real, the Soviets sent the coordinates for Luna 2 (Sept 1959) to Jodrell Bank head Bernard Lovell ...


37

In 1991 Central Committee of the CPSU Archive released several documents related to Gagarin's flight. Amongst them was Gagarin's own after-action report to the government commission. Sadly, Russian State Archive of Socio-Political History, which inherited the CC CPSU archives, doesn't have a digitised version online, but it was published in the "Communist" ...


35

It is depending on your definition of a Russian. Gagarin was born in the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, so he was the first Russian in space. Sergei Krikaljow (also a Russian) started as a citizen of the Soviet Union, when the Soviet Union was dissolved on December 26, 1991 he was in space. So he was the first citizen of the Russian ...


33

I've seen this story a number of times since Another Earth was released in 2011, usually something along lines like this article. The problem is that I've never seen anything about it in any of the official histories or biographies of Gagarin. Also, the stories all seem to think Gagarin's mission was to last 25 (or 28 depending on the story) days. In fact, ...


32

TL; DR: Landing on the moon was covered in the Soviet press, and was well known in the Soviet Union. It received much less attention than Soviet space missions, though. Just to add something factual to previous answers. NASA on U.S.S.R. reaction NASA's Astronautics and Aeronautics, 1969 (15 MB PDF file) contains some useful information on press coverage ...


23

The only astronauts who have ever died in space are the crew of Soyuz 11: Georgy Dobrovolsky, Vladislav Volkov, and Viktor Patsayev. This took place in 1971. Perhaps that you are thinking about the legend of the lost cosmonauts.


17

Well, the USSR did not conceal the event from the public. The official position can be described as follows: The landing once more time confirms the materialistic worldview. The American consmonauts did not see angels or devils there, neither the God. The landing shows the extent which a human can reach with labor and technological progress, it shows that ...


16

Religion as a motivation for Armstrong's solo visit is very unlikely. Armstrong was actually the 2nd U.S. Astronaut that travelled to the Soviet Union - the first was Frank Borman, who arrived in Moscow on July 2nd, 1969 after being invited by the U.S.S.R. Institute for Soviet-American Relations.1 Borman was among the more religious of the Apollo ...


15

Well, according to all sources I can find they issued free travel vouchers - in the form of "First Moon Flights" Club cards - that could be redeemed for a trip to the moon when the service started. Image source According to a Wired article on Virgin Galactic (as well as Wikipedia...) some 98,000 people placed reservations and one individual attempted to ...


13

Googling "history of Venus knowledge" yields a link to this: The discovery of hot millimeter waves radiation omitted [sic] by Venus made from Earth-based radioastronomy observations at the end of the 1950’s was the first evidence that Venus is a hot planet Mayer et al. (1958). [Update] and this: The first successful flyby of Venus was performed by ...


12

According to books like Profiles of the Future by Arthur C. Clark and Rockets, Missiles and Space Travel by Wily Ley, many scientists and engineers misunderstood the physics enough to claim that space travel was impossible or impractical in reaction to discussions of the theories of Goddard, Oberth, and other space travel pioneers in the early 20th century. ...


11

Answer Subsequent to following the suggested lead by Snow's Answer (@Snow deserves credit for this) I have been personally provided the following information by Colin A. Fries, archivist at NASA’s HQ History Division... The pilots of the T-38 missing man flyover for the January 31, 1986 memorial service for the STS-51-L Challenger crew were Johnson Space ...


11

The complete transcript of all the communication of Yuri Gagarin with the command center during the flight on April 12, 1961, as well as the transcript of everything Gagarin recorded with the tape recorder he had on board the space ship was published in the Russian language in the official journal of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in April 1991. ...


9

I have serious trouble believing anyone in the physics community actually believed rockets wouldn't work in a vacuum. The principle that allows them to operate there is Newton's Third Law, which by the 20th century had been around quite a while. True, random people off the street may have believed that, but random people off the street today often have ...


9

The outcome of the Cold War would likely not have been different if the "Space Race" did not occur. To answer your question, the space race played a small role in the outcome of the Cold War. The result of the Cold War was largely due to the inability of the USSR economy to ever takeoff. The failure of the Five Year Plans, the constant need to try and ...


9

NASA had known experimentally what near weightlessness felt like at least since 1959, when the famous "Vomit Comet" had enabled humans to experience the condition for up to 25 seconds at a time. This plane followed a nearly parabolic flight path to produce the sensation of weightlessness. Hence there was no reason before the first human spaceflight to ...


8

Personally I think that's a rather backwards way of looking at things. One of the main points about the big multistage missiles required to launch things into space is that you need pretty much the same capability to be able to launch things at another country tens of thousands of miles away. So a large part of the space race was always showing the other ...


7

The Apollo-Soyuz Test Project was the first spaceflight to include two participating nations working together with their own national spacecraft. The Americans sent up an Apollo command module, while the Russians launched a Soyuz spacecraft. The Soyuz and Apollo spacecraft docked on July 17, 1975, in a demonstration of how well the rendezvous and docking ...


7

Question: Why did Jodrell Bank assist the Soviet Union to collect data from their spacecraft in the mid 1960's?....... He (BBC's Tim O’Brien) does indeed describe something more like assistance than spying..... Was this purely scientific camaraderie (pardon the pun), or inter-government cooperation or something else? Clearly the Soviet Union's space ...


6

Clarke later apologized for misquoting Wooley on the subject of spaceflight. The passage in question came from a radio interview, so there isn't a solid paper trail, but there's no doubt that summing up Wooley's position as "spaceflight is utter bilge" is totally unfair. Wooley was talking about the popular idea that interplanetary flight would soon be ...


6

I'm afraid that the reality of the 1961 Soviet Union was rather different... According e.g. to the Russian Wikipedia and its sources during Vostok-1 landing near Engels it was tracked by the local air-defence battalion. While Gagarin was still near the landing site the soldiers from that battalion arrived acompanied by some villagers from the local kolhoz. ...


6

I asked an expert on Gagarin to review the question: "I never heard the story about unexplained ticking, but I do know that he wore Sergei Korolev's wrist watch. At least that is the Russian legend." Personal correspondence with Cathleen Lewis, curator in the Division of Space History, Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum She notes she has not ...


6

If you are talking about ethnicity, then the answer is Gagarin, who was an ethnic Russian.


6

"International Geophysical Year" (IGY) ran from from 1 July 1957 to 31 December 1958. Eisenhower's speech in October 1957 was being made in that context. Image source Wikimedia The United States' Explorer 1 satellite was launched as one of the projects for that year. The US intention to launch an artificial satellite during the IGY had been announced in ...


5

Manned exploration of the Moon has an aspect that is now seldom remembered, but was pretty obvious at the time. Both sides prospected for a permanent Moon presence, soon followed by a populous, self-sufficient Moon colony. Repeating the "New World" scenario. I don't think such colony would remain non-military (i.e. civilian), but surely expansion into an ...


5

We know the Soviets feared the shuttle. In response they developed their own: Buran programme, for, among other goals: carrying out military-applied research and experiments to ensure the creation of large space systems using weapons on known and new physical principles (ru:WP) But it was really just to stay on-par or not get too much behind. The logic ...


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