Vostok 6 and the first women in space

Vostok 6 was the first human spaceflight to carry a woman, cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova, into space.

Vostok 6 was the first human spaceflight to carry a woman, cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova, into space.

Vostok 6 was the first human spaceflight to carry a woman, cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova, into space.

After the successful launch of Vostok 5 on 14 June, Tereshkova began final preparations for her own flight. She was 26 at the time. On the morning of 16 June 1963, Tereshkova and her backup Solovyova were both dressed in spacesuits and taken to the launch pad by bus. Following the tradition set by Gagarin, Tereshkova also urinated on the bus tire, becoming the first woman to do so.

After completing her communication and life support checks, she was sealed inside the Vostok. After a two-hour countdown, Vostok 6 launched faultlessly, and Tereshkova became the first woman in space.

Her call sign in this flight was Chaika (English: Seagull; Russian: Ча́йка), later commemorated as the name of an asteroid, 1671 Chaika.