Airbus Defence and Space

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50 years of manned spaceflight

50 years of enthusiasm for technology that has enabled mankind to make an incredible quantum leap: since Yuri Gagarin’s brief but momentous voyage beyond the confines of the Earth’s atmosphere several hundred human beings have experienced first-hand what it is like to venture into space. In a few short decades, space has moved from the realm of fantasy into science fact, and is proving to be as awe-inspiring and rich with potential as anything imagined by science fiction.

Since Yuri Gagarin’s brief but momentous voyage beyond the confines of the Earth’s atmosphere several hundred human beings have experienced first-hand what it is like to venture into space. In a few short decades, space has moved from the realm of fantasy into science fact, and is proving to be as awe-inspiring and rich with potential as anything imagined by science fiction.

Today, in the International Space Station 400 kilometres above the Earth, men and women are living and working to add a new dimension to scientific research. A fabulous international programme, marking a major step on the path to discovery.

What thoughts does the progress made inspire? What does the future hold?

Manned flightHuman spaceflight