A space capsule is an often manned spacecraft which has a simple shape for the main section, without any wings or other features to create lift during atmospheric reentry.

A space capsule is an often manned spacecraft which has a simple shape for the main section, without any wings or other features to create lift during atmospheric reentry. Capsules have been used in most of the manned space programs to date, including the world's first manned spacecraft Vostok and Mercury, as well as in later Soviet Voskhod, Soyuz, Zond/L1, L3, TKS, US Gemini, Apollo Command Module, Chinese Shenzhou and US, Russian and Indian manned spacecraft currently being developed. A capsule is the specified form for the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle.

A manned space capsule must have everything necessary for everyday life, including air, water and food. The space capsule must also protect astronauts from the cold and radiation of space. A capsule must be well insulated and have a system that controls the inside temperature and environment. It also must have a way that the astronauts would not be knocked around during launch or reentry. Additionally, since the inside will be weightless, there must be a way for the astronauts to stay in their seats during the flight. For this each seat has a system of straps and buckles. One of the most important things that a space capsule must have is a way to communicate with people back on Earth, or mission control.

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