History of Manned Flights
The day of April 12, 1961 became a triumph of the human mind.
A man-made vehicle with a man aboard first escaped into the Universe space, a voice of an Earth's citizen - our countryman Yuri Alexeyevich Gagarin - was head from there. It was a true deed of all participants of activities.
One orbit this spacecraft made around Earth ushered in the era of manned spaceflight. It was a real-life demonstration of the feasibility of space exploration and working in completely new and unfamiliar environments.
The spacecraft orbital insertion using Vostok launch vehicle, which was a space launcher version of the intercontinental ballistic missile R-7, its orbital flight and re-entry of the descent vehicle into atmosphere at orbital velocity, its descent and landing took only 108 minutes. This epoch-making achievement was the result of an enormous creative effort on the part of many dozens of companies and organizations, thousands of scientists, engineers, managers and specialists. Both Vostok spacecraft and its launch vehicle were developed and built by specialists of our organization. The entire work to implement this unique mission was carried out with our specialists playing the leading role under the direction of the father of spaceflight, the Chief Designer of rocket and space systems S.P.Korolev.
Within the years passed since that memorable day the world was many times delighted with achievements of Soviet and Russian manned cosmonautics.
The currently achieved duration of continuous manned missions to space has by now risen to 437 days. Semiannual missions to the International Space Station became regular. The number of cosmonauts and astronauts, the citizens of 37 countries of the world, now amounts to more than 500 persons, and their total time in space approaches 100 years.