Skip to content

Search the Roberta Bondar Site

International Day of Human Space Flight

On April 12, 1961, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first person to travel into space. He made a 108-minute orbital flight in the fully automated Vostok 1 space capsule.

Patch for Vostok

Gagarin did not land in his space capsule. Vostok 1’s reentry into the atmosphere had its excitements. The reentry module did not separate from the service module as planned and gyrated unexpectedly until reentry forces and heat uncoupled them!
Gagarin was ejected from the module at 7 km (4.4 mi) and parachuted safely to ground. The reentry module landed by its own parachute and is now on display at the museum of the Rocket and Space Corporation Energia.

Star City’s Gagarin Research & Test Cosmonaut Training Center is named after him.

This historic event was the first step on the way to space exploration for the benefit of humanity and life on this planet.

Fifty years later, convinced that humanity’s common interests could be served in the exploration and use of outer space, the United Nations General Assembly declared this day the International Day of Human Space Flight:

“to celebrate each year at the international level the beginning of the space era for mankind, reaffirming the important contribution of space science and technology in achieving sustainable development goals and increasing the well-being of States and peoples, as well as ensuring the realization of their aspiration to maintain outer space for peaceful purposes.”

B Bondar / Real World Content Advantage