50 YEARS AGO TODAY: Yuri Gagarin Was The First Man In Space

yuri gagarin, vostock 1

[credit provider=”NASA” url=”http://www.nasa.gov/topics/history/features/gagarin/gagarin.html”]

On April 12, 1961 the first human flew in space. “I see Earth! It is so beautiful!” said 27-year old Yuri Gagarin, the Russian cosmonaut who was chosen among thousands for the mission. 

The flight lasted only 108 minutes and orbited the Earth only once. Gagarin was back in time for a grand state dinner to tell about this journey in space.

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permalink=”on-12-april-1961-yuri-gagarin-27-became-the-first-human-to-travel-into-space-1″
title=”On 12 April 1961, Yuri Gagarin, 27, became the first human to travel into space.”
content=”On 12 April 1961, Yuri Gagarin became the first human to travel into space, launched into orbit on the Vostok 3KA-3 spacecraft (Vostok 1).”
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[slide
permalink=”gagarin-seen-dressing-in-a-heatingcooling-garment-worn-under-his-orange-pressure-suit-2″
title=”Gagarin seen dressing in a heating/cooling garment worn under his orange pressure suit.”
content=”Yuri Gagarin seen dressing in a heating/cooling garment worn under his orange pressure suit.”
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[slide
permalink=”the-control-panel-of-vostok-1-spacecraft-which-was-designed-to-carry-a-single-cosmonaut-gagarin-flew-on-autopilot-through-the-whole-mission-and-never-manually-operated-the-spacecraft-3″
title=”The control panel of Vostok 1 spacecraft, which was designed to carry a single cosmonaut. Gagarin flew on autopilot through the whole mission and never manually operated the spacecraft.”
content=”This image is of the control panel of Vostok 1 spacecraft, which was designed to carry a single cosmonaut. The mission was manned by 27-year-old Yuri Gagarin. The VostokThe primary and secondary backup cosmonauts for the mission were Gherman Titov and Grigori Nelyubov. The assignments were formally made on April 8, four days before the mission. On April 12, 1961, Gagarin became the first person to orbit the Earth.”
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permalink=”the-vostok-spacecraft-4″
title=”The Vostok spacecraft”
content=”This photo released by spacecraft manufacturer RSC Energia shows the Vostok spacecraft. On April 12, 1961, Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin launched into orbit on Vostok 1 to become the first human to fly in space.”
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[slide
permalink=”yuri-gagarin-pilot-of-the-vostok-1-is-on-the-bus-on-the-way-to-the-launch-the-cosmonaut-behind-gagarin-is-german-titov-the-back-up-pilot-who-became-pilot-of-vostok-2-5″
title=”Yuri Gagarin, pilot of the Vostok 1, is on the bus on the way to the launch. The cosmonaut behind Gagarin is German Titov, the back-up pilot who became pilot of Vostok 2.”
content=”In this image Yuri Gagarin, pilot of the Vostok 1, is on the bus on the way to the launch. The cosmonaut behind Gagarin is German Titov, the back-up pilot who became pilot of Vostok 2.”
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[slide
permalink=”on-the-way-to-the-launch-pad-6″
title=”On the way to the launch pad”
content=”Russian spacecraft designer S. P. Korolev (partially obscured, in fedora hat) and cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin approach the launch pad ahead of the April 12, 1961 launch of Vostok 1, the first human spaceflight.”
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[slide
permalink=”climbing-into-the-vostock-1-spacecraft-7″
title=”Climbing into the Vostock 1 spacecraft”
content=”In this collage of photos posted by Russia’s Federal Space Agency, cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin has arrived at the Vostok 1 spacecraft, and climbs inside ahead of the April 12, 1961 launch that made him the first human in space.”
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permalink=”the-vostok-3ka-3-spacecraft-vostok-1-8″
title=”The Vostok 3KA-3 spacecraft (Vostok 1)”
content=”The Vostok 3KA-3 spacecraft (Vostok 1) awaits the launch of Yuri Gagarin on April 12, 1961, which would make him the first human to travel into space.”
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permalink=”the-launch-9″
title=”The launch”
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[slide
permalink=”vostok-1-is-seen-with-charring-and-its-parachute-on-the-ground-after-landing-south-west-of-engels-in-the-saratov-region-of-southern-russia-10″
title=”Vostok 1 is seen with charring and its parachute on the ground after landing south west of Engels, in the Saratov region of southern Russia.”
content=”Here the re-entry capsule of the Vostok 3KA-3 (also known as Vostok 1) spacecraft (Vostok 1) is seen with charring and its parachute on the ground after landing south west of Engels, in the Saratov region of southern Russia.”
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permalink=”on-april-12-1961-the-era-of-human-spaceflight-began-when-the-cosmonaut-yuri-gagarin-became-the-first-human-to-orbit-the-earth-in-his-vostock-i-spacecraft-the-flight-lasted-108-minutes-11″
title=”On April 12, 1961, the era of human spaceflight began when the Cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first human to orbit the Earth in his Vostock I spacecraft. The flight lasted 108 minutes.”
content=”On April 12, 1961, the era of human spaceflight began when the Cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first human to orbit the Earth in his Vostock I spacecraft. The flight lasted 108 minutes.”
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[slide
permalink=”gagarin-never-went-back-to-space-he-was-hailed-as-a-national-treasure-and-was-never-sent-on-dangerous-missions-he-was-killed-in-an-acident-during-a-routine-training-flight-in-1968-at-age-34-12″
title=”Gagarin never went back to space — he was hailed as a national treasure and was never sent on dangerous missions. He was killed in an acident during a routine training flight in 1968 at age 34.”
content=”In 1968, cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin trained for another space mission, but was killed in a plane crash before doing so. Here, Gagarin is shown just before that flight in a photo released by the Russian aerospace firm RSC Energia.”
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[slide
permalink=”want-more-russian-history-check-out-13″
title=”Want more Russian history? Check out…”
content=”Amazing Photos Of Moscow: Then And Now >
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