||This article contains orbital elements but does not include an epoch, or date when those elements, which typically vary over time, were correct.|
Model of the Vostok capsule with its upper stage
|Operator||Soviet space program|
|Harvard designation||1961 Tau 1|
|Mission duration||1 day, 1 hour, 18 minutes|
|Manufacturer||Experimental Design OKB-1|
|Launch mass||4,731 kilograms (10,430 lb)|
|Callsign||Орёл (Oryol - "Eagle")|
|Start of mission|
|Launch date||August 6, 1961, 06:00UTC|
|Launch site||Baikonur 1/5|
|End of mission|
|Landing date||August 7, 1961, 07:18UTC|
|Landing site||Krasny Kut
|Perigee||183 kilometres (114 mi)|
|Apogee||244 kilometres (152 mi)|
Vostok 2 (Russian: Восток-2, Orient 2 or East 2) was a Soviet space mission which carried cosmonaut Gherman Titov into orbit for a full day on August 6, 1961 to study the effects of a more prolonged period of weightlessness on the human body. Titov orbited the Earth over 17 times, exceeding the single orbit of Yuri Gagarin on Vostok 1 − as well as the suborbital spaceflights of American astronauts Alan Shepard and Gus Grissom aboard their respective Mercury-Redstone 3 and 4 missions. Indeed, Titov's number of orbits and flight time would not be surpassed by an American astronaut until Gordon Cooper's Mercury-Atlas 9 spaceflight in May 1963.
The flight was an almost complete success, marred only by a heater that had inadvertently been turned off prior to liftoff and that allowed the inside temperature to drop to 50 °F (10 °C),:113 a bout of space sickness, and a troublesome re-entry when the reentry module failed to separate cleanly from its service module.
Unlike Yuri Gagarin on Vostok 1, Titov took manual control of the spacecraft for a short while. Another change came when the Soviets admitted that Titov did not land with his spacecraft. Titov would claim in an interview that he ejected from his capsule as a test of an alternative landing system; it is now known that all Vostok program landings were performed this way.
As of 2013, Titov remains the youngest person to reach space. He was a month short of 26 years old at launch.
|Pilot||Andrian G. Nikolayev|
- Mass: 4,731 kg (10,430 lb)
- Perigee: 183 km (114 mi)
- Apogee: 244 km (152 mi)
- Inclination: 64.93°
- Period: 88.46 minutes
Gherman Titov launched from Gagarin's Start at Baikonur Cosmodrome on 6 August 1961 at 0600 UTC aboard the Vostok 2 space capsule. Radio personality Yuri Levitan interrupted Radio Moscow programming with an announcement of the flight at 0745 UTC.
Nausea set in as Titov escaped Earth's gravity, which caused him to vomit when he tried to eat one of his planned meals. Soviet space program officials suspected disturbance of Titov's vestibular system was to blame, leading them to begin early investigations into what is now known as space adaptation syndrome, or space sickness. Titov is believed to be the first spacefarer to experience the condition.
Titov took manual control of the capsule's attitude for a time as he passed over Africa on his first orbit and would again at the end of the seventh orbit; the controls were reported to function well. Titov exchanged greetings with Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev as he passed over the Soviet Union at the end of his first orbit, replicating Gagarin's feat. During his flight the first manual photographs were taken from orbit, thus setting a record for modern space photography. He also was the first person to film the Earth using, for ten minutes, a professional quality Konvas-Avtomat movie camera.
A camera aboard the capsule transmitted smiling pictures of Titov to the ground as he passed over Soviet territory on the fifth orbit. Titov settled down to sleep during the seventh orbit; he awoke over eight hours later, 37 minutes after the scheduled end of his sleep period. Sleep did not relieve Titov's serious discomfort; he still felt very ill after awaking. After 12 orbits Titov suddenly began to recover, and became "completely functional and fully fit".:293–294
Detailed information about the radio frequencies used by the spacecraft were made public before Titov's flight; listening posts around the world picked up voice and telemetry signals from Vostok 2, allaying suspicions that the spaceflight might have been faked.
As on Vostok 1, the Vostok 2 service module failed to detach from the reentry module when commanded and reentry began with the former still attached; the conjoined modules gyrated violently until aerodynamic heating burned through the straps still holding them together. Titov ejected from the capsule as planned and parachuted separately to land at 0718 UTC on 7 August 1961, near Krasny Kut, Saratov Oblast.
In 1964, the Vostok 2 capsule was reused as a ballast weight in a test of an experimental parachute system planned for the Voskhod capsule. The prototype malfunctioned, shattering Vostok 2 into tiny pieces.:117
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