(1) A Soviet cosmonaut became the first man in space in 1961. Yuri Gagarin’s space flight was dangerous
, but his Vostok 1 spacecraft protected him from the hazards of space. Almost five years later, another Soviet cosmonaut would become the first man in space, outside of a spacecraft. Alexei Leonov performed the first spacewalk in 1965. Leonov’s spacewalk proved that a person could survive
in space, outside of a spacecraft. Today, astronauts and cosmonauts use spacewalks to perform
all sorts of tasks.
(3) Today, astronauts have to perform repair
missions and close inspections that cannot be done from inside of a spaceship. Some of the most useful spacewalks repaired the Hubble Space Telescope. In 1990, NASA launched the Hubble into Space. It was supposed
to be the most powerful telescope
ever launched into orbit
, but it was broken. During several
spacewalks, astronauts repaired the Hubble’s faulty
mirror. After the repairs, the telescope
worked better than scientists had hoped. The Hubble success
proved that astronauts could safely perform complicated
tasks during a spacewalk.