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Manned space mission

A manned space mission is a space exploration mission with human crew, and possibly passengers (in contrast to unmanned space missions which are remotely-controlled or robotic space probes).

As of the beginning of 2003 they have been carried out by the United States and the Soviet Union/Russia only. In addition, China has announced to carry out a manned space mission before the end of 2003.

Manned space missions beyond Earth orbit have been carried out by the United States only: to the Moon. NASA's Apollo program landed twelve people on the Moon and returned them to Earth: Apollo 11-17, except 13, i.e. six missions, with each time three astronauts of which two landed on the Moon.

On occasion, passengers of other species (dogs, chimpanzees, monkeys) have ridden aboard spacecraft.

The first manned space mission was the Vostok 1 on April 12, 1961: Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin made one orbit around the earth.

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