History of Space Exploration
Yuri Gagarin was the pilot of Vostok 1. He was the first human to go to space, when his Vostok spacecraft created an orbit around the Earth on April 12th, 1961. The flight lasted 108 minutes. The mission ended with the de-orbiting firing of the reentry rocks. He ejected the capsule at 7 km altitude because the landing from the capsule was too dangerous for people. He had no control of his spacecraft. There was a logical lock that he could put a combination in in case he got nervous. To use the controls he had to prove that he could put in the combination.
The first manned spaceflight to last a day and the second manned orbital flight. It made 17.5 orbits, the pilot was Gherman S. Titov who was Yuri Gagarin's backup. Titov landed safely in a seperate parachute landing in an ejector couch. The flight was an investigation to see if a man was able to work for a long period of time in weightlessness.
Vostok 3 and 4
Vostok 3 and 4 took off on the same launch pad a day apart and were placed in such accurate orbits that the spacecraft passed within 6.5 km of each other. They landed a few minutes apart. The Soviet Air Force selected Andriyan Nikolaev and Pavel Popovich for the flight. The Vostok-3 mission lasted 94 hours and Vostok-4 spent 71 hours in flight. The Soviet manned spaceflight record exceeded the America's only three-orbit mission by 60 orbits.
Vostok 5 and 6
This flight was another double launch. This time the first woman in space is involved. She was 26 and her name is Valentina Tereshkova. On June 16, 1963 she was launched in the spacecraft Vostok 6, which completed 48 orbits in 71 hours. At the same time in space was Valery F. Bykovsky, who had been launched two days earlier in Vostok 5. They both landed on June 19th.