Science Museum to present major Russian Cosmonaut exhibition
The Science Museum in London is preparing to host the largest exhibition of Soviet-era space memorabilia ever held outside Russia.
Entitled 'Cosmonauts: Birth of the Space Age', the new exhibition will tell the story of Russia's role in the space race, from the work of late 19th century Cosmist thinkers to life aboard the International Space Station in the present day.
It will also examine the remarkable breakthroughs made by Soviet scientists during the 1950s and 60s, including the launch of the first satellite Sputnik in 1957 and Yuri Gagarin's pioneering journey as the first human in space in 1961.
“Cosmonauts is a once-in-a-lifetime exhibition that has taken years of dedication and skill from the Science Museum team to make a reality," said Ian Blatchford, Director of the Science Museum.
"The Russian space programme is one of the great intellectual, scientific and engineering successes of the 20th century and I am thrilled that we have been able to bring together such an outstanding collection of Russian space artefacts to celebrate these achievements. I want to thank all our partners and funders who have made this exhibition possible.”
Amongst the star items of the exhibition will be on display in the exhibition will Vostok-6, the actual capsule in which Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman in space, travelled safely back to earth in 1963.
Further highlights will include the futuristic illustrations of rocket pioneer Konstantin Tsiolkovsky created in the 1930s; the original 1957 model of Sputnik, created by lead Soviet rocket engineer and designer Sergei Korolev; and the monumental five metre tall LK-3 lunar lander, designed to take Cosmonauts to the moon but never pressed into service.
“Cosmonauts tells the story of the Russian space programme as never before – and in doing so it also tells the story of Russia through its history, technology, culture and its people,” added Bob Dudley, Group Chief Executive of exhibition sponsor BP.
“BP has a long-standing relationship with the Science Museum aimed at increasing public engagement with science and technology. Our support of Cosmonauts is also an extension of BP’s broader efforts in Russia to promote the development of science and engineering as well as excellence in arts and culture.”
'Cosmonauts: Birth of the Space Age' opens at the Science Museum in London on September 18.
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