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Questions tagged [vostok-program]

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33
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4answers
6k views

How did the USSR track Gagarin's Vostok-1 orbital flight? Was tracking capability an issue in the choice of orbit?

For the USA's Mercury flights, a number of tracking stations were installed around the globe. John Glenn's first orbital flight was tracked with them, plus a number of ships. (Tracking stations used ...
7
votes
1answer
136 views

How was the Vostok capsule stabilized for spin during descent, after the equipment/maneuvering module had detached?

The spherical Vostok capsule separated from the rest of the spacecraft when beginning descent. The center of gravity was "below" the cosmonaut's couch, so the capsule didn't tumble. But what prevented ...
5
votes
1answer
183 views

What kept Vostok/Voskhod from tipping or rolling upon landing?

Considering that the reentry capsule of Vostok and Voskhod were spherical, what kept them from rolling or tipping after landing? Soyuz has a flatter bottom, so I would expect this to be less of an ...
4
votes
1answer
142 views

What radio frequencies were used by the Soviet space program circa 1961? (“Lost Cosmonaut” recording)

The recent Joe Scott video The Mysterious "Lost Cosmonaut" Recording | Random Thursday describes radio recording said to have been made by the Judica Cordiglia brothers from Italy in the early 1960's. ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

Has USSR/Russia launched humans on any rocket not derived from R-7?

The Soviet Union's first crewed launch, Vostok 1, was on a Vostok booster, derived from the R-7 ICBM and Sputnik satellite launcher with an additional stage added. The Soyuz boosters used today by ...
5
votes
1answer
236 views

Did the heat shield of the Vostok 1 capsule ablate during reentry?

This Wikipedia article (in german) has some information about the heat shield of Vostok 1. The heat shield was made from asbestos, its thickness was increased from 3 cm to up to 18 cm. The weight of ...
18
votes
3answers
5k views

How did the Vostok ejection seat safely eject an astronaut from a sealed space capsule?

Wikipedia's Yuri Gagarin says: At about 23,000 feet (7,000 m), Gagarin ejected from the descending capsule as planned and landed using a parachute. and the section Vostok_programme; Vostok 3KA ...
2
votes
1answer
253 views

When did soviet capsules begin using retropropulsion immediately before landing?

Wikipedia's Yuri Gagarin says: At about 23,000 feet (7,000 m), Gagarin ejected from the descending capsule as planned and landed using a parachute. and the section Vostok_programme; Vostok 3KA ...
4
votes
1answer
303 views

Could Vostok 1 deorbit on its cold gas thrusters?

Citing the Wikipedia article: The orbit's perigee and apogee had been selected to cause reentry due to orbital decay within 10 days (the limit of the life support system function) in the event of ...
15
votes
2answers
1k views

What was the globe instrument in Vostok 1?

This image was attached to the Wikipedia article on Vostok 1 with a perfunctory caption "Part of the Vostok 1 instrument panel". I'm interested in the globe in the center. What is the name of this ...