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Vostok

The Vostok ("East") was a type of spacecraft built by the Soviet Union's space program for manned space flight.

The craft consisted of a spherical descent module (mass 2.46 tonnes, diameter 2.3 meters), which housed the cosmonaut, instruments and escape system, and a conical instrument module (mass 2.27 tonnes, 2.25 m long, 2.43 m wide), which contained propellant and the engine system. On reentry, the cosmonaut would eject from the craft at about 7km and descend via parachute, while the capsule would land separately. The launch vehicle was developed from the R-7 rocket.

The basic Vostok design has remained in use for some forty years, gradually adapted for a range of other uncrewed satellites.

A series of prototype Vostoks, including at least five with animals and sometimes a test dummy aboard tested the spacecraft.

Vostok 1 was the first manned spaceflight, and was followed by

Another seven Vostok flights were originally planned, going through to the April of 1966, but these were cancelled as the race to the moon intensified.

On March 18, 1980 a Vostok rocket exploded on its launch pad during a fueling operation killing 50.

The Vostok was succeeded by the Voskhod spacecraft.



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