'Is My Hair Gray?': The Story of Soyuz 4 and 5 (Part 2)

Possible scenario for how the ill-fated re-entry of Boris Volynov may have occurred. Soyuz 5 began its fall from orbit with the descent module’s hatch facing into the direction of travel, thus exposing the least-protected part of the spacecraft to the most extreme thermal stresses. Image Credit: Joachim Becker/SpaceFacts.de

To Yevgeni Khrunov the first […]

'For the Tenth Time': The Story of Soyuz 4 and 5 (Part 1)

Artist’s concept of the EVA transfer of cosmonauts Yevgeni Khrunov and Alexei Yeliseyev from Soyuz 5 to Soyuz 4 in January 1969. Image Credit: Orbiter-Forum

At first glance the flight of Soyuz 4 seemed certain to suffer misfortune. Its lone pilot, Vladimir Shatalov, arrived at the Baikonur launch pad in the desolate steppe of […]

'Creeping and Unpleasant': The Near-Space Experience of Soyuz 18A

In April 1975, cosmonauts Oleg Makarov (left) and Vasili Lazarev endured one of the most harrowing missions in the annals of human space exploration. Photo Credit: Joachim Becker / SpaceFacts.de

Thirty years ago, Soviet cosmonauts Vladimir Titov and Gennadi Strekalov came within a whisker of death when their booster exploded on the Baikonur launch […]