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Valentina Tereshkova AnniversaryMarch 6, 2017
Today on March 6, 2017 Valentina Vladimirovna TERESHKOVA – the world’s first female cosmonaut, Hero of the Soviet Union, candidate of technical science, Professor of N.E. Zhukovsky Air Force Engineering Academy, Major-General of aviation celebrates her anniversary.
On June 16, 1963 Valentina Vladimirovna performed her legendary flight on the Vostok-6 spacecraft heralding a new era of space exploration by the beautiful half of mankind. This flight was preceded by a long way.
Valentina TERESHKOVA was born on March 6 in the Maslennikovo village, Tutaev district, Yarovlavl region. Her family worked in agriculture. Father Vladimir Aksenovich TERESHKOV was a tractor driver (killed in the Soviet-Finish War) and her mother Elena Fedorovna TERESHKOVA (nee Kruglova) worked on a collective farm. The family had three children. Valentina had older sister Ludmila and younger brother Vladimir. In summer 1945 Elena Fedorovna with her three children moved to Yaroslavl and began to work at Industrial Complex of Technical Fabrics Krasny Perekop.
Valya went to school in 1945. The family financial position was poor, because of this fact Valentina immediately after finishing the seventh class had to work at the tires production plant. Later in 1955 she finished the evening school.
In 1955 TERESHKOVA went to work at Yaroslavl Industrial Complex of Technical Fabrics Krasny Perekop and became a roving worker at the roving shop. From 1960 to 1962 she was appointed a full-time Secretary of the Komsomol Committee of this plant. In 1959 Valentina began to practice parachuting in Yaroslavl flying club and made 163 parachute jumps, which is a serious indicator for a woman. TERESHKOVA received a category and from this point her way into space began.
In February 1962 Valentina TERESHKOVA on her own initiative was enrolled in listeners-cosmonauts. It was then that noted designer of rocket-space technology Sergei Pavlovich KOROLEV first voiced the idea to send a woman to conquer space. This idea was approved by the leadership of the Communist Party of the USSR.
From March to November 1962 Valentina Vladimirovna was engaged in general space training and having passed the state exams successfully she was enrolled in the cosmonaut corps as a female soldier. In January 1963 she began to pass training for the Vostok-6 spacecraft flight under the female flight program in the group together with Irina SOLOVIOVA, Valentina PONOMAREVA and Zhanna YORKINA.
During this training TERESHKOVA together with other members of the cosmonaut detachment trained for the human body resistance to space factors. Her training included the use of a thermal chamber where it was necessary to have a flying suit on at a temperature of 70°C and humidity of 30% and an anechoic chamber (the room isolated from sounds) where each female candidate had to spend 10 days.
The training passed in weightlessness on MiG-15. During the parabolic steep climb inside the aircraft weightlessness was provided for 40 seconds and there were 3-4 such sessions in flight. During each session it was necessary to perform a specific task: write a name, try to eat and talk using a portable radio transmitter. Special attention was given to parachute training as a cosmonaut just before landing ejected and landed separately on a parachute. As there was always a risk to land on water there were trainings for parachute jumping in the sea with the process (not fit to size) suit on.
Initially a simultaneous flight of two women’s crews was preposed but in March 1963 this plan was refused and there was a task of selecting one of 5 candidates. As result for a number of criteria TERESHKOVA was appointed the main candidate for the flight.
Valentina Vladimirovna (call sign Chaika) performed her space flight on June 16-19, 1963 as commander of the Vostok-6 spacecraft under the program of the group flight with Vostok-5 spacecraft piloted by Valery BYKOVSKY. The spacecraft was launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome at 12:29:51. The spacecraft with TERESHKOVA made 48 orbits around the Earth.
During the flight a large scope of biomedical research was conducted, as well as test and modernization of the manned spacecraft systems in the joint flight. During the flight the world’s first female cosmonaut kept a logbook and made pictures of the horizon, which were later used to detect aerosol layers in the atmosphere.
The Vostok-6 decent capsule successfully landed in the Baevsk district of the Altai Territory.
Lieutenant-General Nikolai KAMANIN engaged in the selection and training of cosmonauts described the launch of TERESHKOVA in his memoirs:
The preparation of the launch vehicle, spacecraft and all maintenance operations were extremely clear. By efficiency and coordination of operation of all services and systems the launch of TERESHKOVA reminded me the launch of Gagarin. As on April 12, 1961, on June 16, 1963 the launch was prepared and its beginning was perfect. Everyone who saw TERESHKOVA during the launch processing and injection of the spacecraft into orbit, listened to her radio reports, unanimously declaired that she performed the launch better than Popovich and Nikolaev. Kamanin said that he was very glad that he was not mistaken in selecting the first female cosmonaut.
After her famous flight Valentina Vladimirovna worked as a cosmonaut-instructor of the cosmonaut corps of the 1st Department, 1-st Division of the group of orbiters and space stations.
However she continued an active state and social activity. Thus, from 1968 to 1987 Valentina TERESHKOVA was Chairman of the Committee of the Soviet Women.
Valentina TERESHKOVA was elected deputy of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR (1966-1989), Member of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR (1974-1989), Vice President of the International Democratic Federation of Women (1969-1987) and Member of the World Peace Council.
In 1987-1992 Valentina TERESHKOVA was Chairman of the Presidium of the Union of Soviet Societies for Friendship and Cultural Relations with Foreign Countries.
From 1992 to 2004 – Chairman of the Presidium of the Russian Association for International Co-operation.
In 1992-1993 – Deputy Chairman of the Russian Agency for International Co-operation.
From 1994 to 2004 Valentina TERESHKOVA was Head of the Russian Center for International Scientific and Cultural Co-operation at the Government of the Russian Federation (from 2002 – at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation) and member of Collegium of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation from 2002 – 2004.
From 2008 to 2011 Valentina Vladimirovna was a deputy of the State Duma of Yaroslavl Region (now it is the Yaroslavl Regional Duma) of the fifth convocation of the United Russia party. From March 25, 2008 – Deputy Chairman of the Yaroslavl Regional Duma.
On December 4, 2011 Valentina TERESHKOVA was elected deputy of the
Now Valentina TERESHKOVA is deputy of the State Duma of the seventh convocation of the United Russia party, Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Committee for federal structure and local self-government problems.
ROSCOSMOS Press Service