Scientist Cosmonaut Ordinard Kolomiytsev
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11 Scientist Cosmonaut Ordinard Kolomiytsev
1. See Ordinard P. Kolomiytsev, Antarktika—kosmonavtika: Ekstremalnaya
tonalnost zhizni (Moscow and Troitsk: IZMIR AN, 2011). Kolomiytsev’s
published bibliography comprises 96 items; see Vasiliy V. Tsibliyev,
ed., Nauchnyye trudy sovetskikh i rossiyskikh kosmonavtov. Materialy k
He has coauthored a number of articles in English, including “The
Upper Atmosphere Response to the Solar-Geographical Variations on
a Final Stage of Flight of MOF ‘Mir,’” Acta Astronautica 53 (2003):
75–84; “Modeling of the Properties of Decameric Wave Propagation
in the Equatorial Ionosphere during the Sunrise,” Geomagnetism and
Astronomy 43 (2003): 772–777; and “Response of the Midlatitude
Ionoshpere to Extreme Solar Events in October-November 2003,”
Geomagnetism and Astronomy 45 (2005): 84–91.
2. On Soviet Antarctic expeditions, see Valeriy V. Lukin et al., eds.,
Sovetskiye i rossiyskie antarkticheskie ekspeditsii v tsifrakh i faktakh (1955–
2005 gg.) (St. Petersburg: AANII, 2006); Yukhan Smuul, Ledovaya
kniga (Moscow: Molodaya gvardiya, 1968).
3. Aleksandr Yakovlevich Marchenko (1916–1991) was a bomber pilot dur-
ing World War II. Once asked by a journalist about the most difficult day
in his life, Marchenko replied, “It was August 26, 1943. I was bombing
my home town of Yenakiyevo. German tanks grouped there. I saw my
own street. It had more tanks than others. I saw my own house. I saw
linen drying on lines. I knew that my mother, my sister, and my sick
father were in the house. I dived [for bombing]. Everything darkened
before my eyes. Next to me my friends dived, dropping bombs . . . For
three days I walked like intoxicated. Then the town was liberated. The
squadron commander immediately told me, “Go there!” I approached
my house; it had no windows, no door. Burnt tanks were everywhere.
Then I saw a grey-haired woman coming out of the garden . . . I walked
toward her; it was my mother! All three were alive; they stayed in a trench
in the garden during the bombing”; Vasiliy Peskov, Belyye sny (Moscow:
4. Nikolay Ivanovich Tyabin.
5. See Ordinard P. Kolomiytsev, Issledovaniye povedeniya sloya F2 ionosfery
v magnitospokoynyye periody v okolopolyusnoy oblasti yuzhnogo polushariya
(Moscow: IZMIR AN, 1969).
6. Nikolay Vasilyevich Pushkov (1903–1981), director of IZMIR AN
between 1940 and 1969.
7. Georgiy Vasilyevich Bukin, Mars Nugaliyevich Fatkullin (1939–2003),
Rudolf Alekseyevich Gulyayev (1934–), Ordinard Panteleymonovich
Kolomiytsev, Anatoliy Ivanovich Kudrevskiy, Vsevolod Lvovich Rozin,
Anatoliy Dmitriyevich Shevnin, and Vladimir Vasilyevich Viskov.
8. Out of 24 candidates nominated by the Academy of Sciences, only 4
passed medical screening: Kolomiytsev, the mathematician Valentin
Ershov and the astrophysicists Mars Fatkullin and Rudlof Gulyayev. They
formed the Academy of Sciences cosmonaut group, led by the optical
electronics specialist Georgiy Katys, who had already been in the cosmo-
naut corps. See Asif Siddiqi, Challenge to Apollo: The Soviet Union and
the Space Race, 1945–1974, NASA SP-2000–4408 (Washington, DC:
NASA, 2000), pp. 623–624; Igor Marinin, “Rossiyskiye kosmonavty-
uchenyye,” Novosti kosmonavtiki, no. 3/118 (January-February 1996):
49–54; Georgiy P. Katys, Moya zhizn v realnom i virtualnom prostran-
stvakh (Moscow: MGOU, 2004). The Air Force apparently agreed to
train the academy’s cosmonauts at the Cosmonaut Training Center in an
attempt to forestall the efforts of Korolev’s Special Design Bureau No. 1
and the Ministry of Health to create a separate center for training civil-
ian cosmonauts; see Nikolay Kamanin, Skrytyy kosmos, vol. 2 (Moscow:
Infortekst, 1997), p. 378.
9. For bibliographies of Fatkullin’s and Gulyayev’s research publications,
see Tsibliyev, ed., Nauchnyye trudy sovetskikh i rossiyskikh kosmonavtov,
pp. 271–278, 346–363.
10. Georgiy Petrovich Katys (1926-); Valentin Gavrilovich Yershov
11. Mstislav Vsevolodovich Keldysh (1911–1978), president of the Soviet
Academy of Sciences (1961–1975).
12. Invented by the Soviet otolaryngologist Konstantin Khilov (1893–
1975), the Khilov swing maintains the horizontal position of the seat
throughout the swing cycle. The Khilov swing was used for studying
and training the vestibular system.
13. After the completion of the eight jumps with forced parachute activa-
tion, the candidates performed two regular jumps with the PD-47–5
parachute from the 1,000 m altitude.
14. A small mounted telescope used for surveying and tracking weather
15. Zhanna Dmitriyevna Yerkina (1939–); Tatyana Dmitriyevna Kuznetsova
16. Yuriy Alekseyevich Gagarin (1934–1968), who flew the Vostok mission
in April 1961, was killed in a MiG-15 UTI crash during a training flight
on March 27, 1968. Cosmonaut trainees participated in three parabolic
flights on MiG-15 UTI. During the first, they experienced zero gravity
and conducted radio communication with the ground. During the sec-
ond, their movement coordination, sight, and the ability to eat and drink
were tested. During the third flight, their physiological parameters were
registered. See Ivan I. Kasyan, Pervyye shagi v kosmos (Moscow: Znaniye,
1985), p. 36.
17. The “tip” (konets) in colloquial Russian refers to the male organ.
18. Sergey Pavlovich Korolev (1907–1966), the chief designer of Soviet
rockets and spacecraft, was the head of the Special Design Bureau No. 1
(OKB-1), which in the years 1966–1974 was called the Central Design
Bureau of Experimental Machine Building. Vladimir Nikolayevich
Chelomey (1914–1984) was the head of the Joint Design Bureau No. 52
(OKB-52), which in the years 1965–1983 was called the Central Design
Bureau of Machine Building.
19. Vladislav (Vadim) Nikolayevich Volkov (1935–1971) flew on Soyuz 7
(1969) and on Soyuz 11 to the Salyut space station (1971); Petr Ivanovich
Kolodin (1930–) left the cosmonaut group in 1983.
20. Major General Nikolay Fedorovich Kuznetsov (1916–2000), the com-
mander of the Cosmonaut Training Center in the years 1963–1972.
21. Nikolay Petrovich Kamanin (1908–1982), assistant chief of the Air
Force for combat training for spaceflight (1960–1971), responsible
for cosmonaut selection and training, crew assignments, and mission
22. Valery Spitkovsky noticed that the cosmonaut group of the Academy
of Sciences was effectively disbanded in July 1968, around the time of
the publication of Academician Andrey Dmitriyevich Sakharov’s (1921–
1989) Reflections on Progress, Peaceful Coexistence, and Intellectual
political leadership might have feared that a scientist cosmonaut would
become an outspoken political activist like Sakharov, and they did not
want to give a scientist a high public profile that would come with the
cosmonaut status. Although such a deliberate action on the part of the
Soviet authorities would be hard to prove, it might be possible that the
scandal around Sakharov’s manifesto sufficiently damaged the Academy
of Sciences politically, so it could not effectively lobby in support of its
Yuriy Mikhailovich Baturin (1949–) flew on Soyuz TM-28 to the Mir
space station (1998) and on Soyuz TM-32 to the International Space
12 “Second Backup”: Valentina Ponomareva
1. Valentina Vladimirovna Tereshkova (1937–) flew the Vostok-6 mission
on June 16–19, 1963.
2. Valentina Ponomareva, Zhenskoye litso kosmosa (Moscow: Gelios,
2002); Ponomareva, “Nachalo vtorogo etapa razvitiya pilotiruemoy
kosmonavtiki (1965–1970 gg.),” in Issledovaniya po istorii i teorii
razvitiya aviatsionnoy i raketno-kosmicheskoy tekhniki, vyp. 8–10,
edited by Boris Raushenbakh (Moscow: Nauka, 2001), pp. 150–174;
Ponomareva, “Osobennosti razvitiya pilotiruyemoy kosmonavtiki
na nachalnom etape,” in Iz istorii raketno-kosmicheskoy nauki i tekh-
niki, vyp. 3, edited by Vsevolod S. Avduyevskiy et al. (Moscow: IIET
R AN, 1999), pp. 132–167. For a bibliography of 27 items, see Vasiliy
V. Tsibliyev, ed., Nauchnyye trudy sovetskikh i rossiyskikh kosmonavtov.
3. Sergey Pavlovich Korolev (1907–1966), the chief designer of Soviet
rockets and spacecraft, the head of the Special Design Bureau No. 1
4. Nikolay Petrovich Kamanin (1908–1982), assistant chief of the Air Force
for combat training for spaceflight (1960–1971), responsible for cosmo-
naut selection and training, crew assignments, and mission program-
ming. On October 23, 1961, Kamanin received a letter from Korolev
requesting the selection of a group of cosmonauts, composed of 28 pilots
and 22 cosmonauts of other professions (engineers, scientists, and com-
munications specialists), including five women, to perform space flights
in 1962–1964. See Nikolay Kamanin, Skrytyy kosmos, vol. 1 (Moscow:
Infortekst, 1995), p. 62 (diary entry for October 24, 1961).
5. Kamanin wrote in his diary, “After Gagarin’s flight, I persuaded
Vershinin, Korolev, and Keldysh to agree to the selection of a small group
of women”; ibid. Konstantin Andreyevich Vershinin (1900–1973), the
chief of the Air Force (1946–1949, 1957–1969); Mstislav Vsevolodovich
Keldysh (1911–1978), president of the Soviet Academy of Sciences
6. Kamanin wrote in his diary, “In my view, it is necessary to prepare women
for space flights mainly for the following reasons: 1. Without doubt
women will fly into space, and it is therefore necessary to start prepara-
tions for women’s flights now. 2. Under no circumstances can one allow
that the first woman in space becomes an American. This would hurt the
patriotic feelings of Soviet women. 3. The first Soviet woman-cosmonaut
will become an agitator for communism as great as Gagarin and Titov”;
ibid. Yuriy Alekseyevich Gagarin (1934–1968) flew the Vostok mission in
April 1961; Gherman Stepanovich Titov (1935–2000) flew the Vostok 2
mission in August 1961.
7. In 1959 a privately funded Women In Space Earliest program was
founded. Thirteen women pilots passed the same physical tests as the male
astronauts selected for the Mercury program; the top four women scored
as highly as the men. Yet NASA refused to select any women astronauts,
citing the formal requirement that astronauts must be graduates of mili-
tary jet test piloting programs. Thus none of the women could qualify,
since women were barred from the Air Force training schools at the
time. In July 1962, a special Subcommittee of the House Committee on
Science and Astronautics held public hearings on the case. See Margaret
A. Weitekamp, Right Stuff, Wrong Sex: America’s First Women in Space
8. Kamanin, Skrytyy kosmos, vol. 1, p. 89 (diary entry for January 19,
9. On the selection and training of the women’s cosmonaut group, see
Asif Siddiqi, Challenge to Apollo: The Soviet Union and the Space Race,
1945–1974, NASA SP-2000–4408 (Washington, DC: NASA, 2000),
10. Irina Bayanovna Solovyeva (1937–), a candidate cosmonaut, the first
backup on the Vostok 6 mission in 1963. From 1960 to 1962 Solovyeva
was a member of the USSR national skydiving team.
11. Kamanin wrote in his diary, “Out of 58, we have selected 23 women
whom we’ll send to the medical tests first, and then we’ll send the
rest. My first impression after looking through their personal files is
disappointment and dissatisfaction. The Voluntary Association for the
Advancement of the Army, Aviation, and the Navy has selected too few
candidates, and most do not meet our requirements”; Kamanin, Skrytyy
12. Besides Ponomareva, Solovyeva, and Tereshkova, the group included
Zhanna Dmitriyevna Yerkina (1939–) and Tatyana Dmitriyevna
13. Star City.
15. “We were faced with developing a vehicle that would have a ‘man on
board’ rather than a pilot flying! Would he need a manual control sys-
tem?”; Boris Chertok, Rockets and People: Hot Days of the Cold War,
vol. 3 (Washington, DC: NASA, 2009), p. 61.
16. Valentina Ponomareva, “Chelovecheskiy faktor v osvoenii kosmosa:
sovetskiy i amerikanskiy podkhody k probleme,” in Institut istorii estest-
voznaniya i tekhinki: Godichnaya nauchnaya konferentsiya, 1998, edited
by Vladimir Orel (Moscow: IIET, 1999), pp. 614–618.
18. The manual attitude control system was used during the Voskhod 2 mis-
sion in March 1965. See Siddiqi, Challenge to Apollo, pp. 457–458.
19. Vladimir A. Shatalov, Trudnyye dorogi kosmosa, 2nd ed. (Moscow:
Molodaya gvardiya, 1981), p. 129. Vladimir Aleksandrovich Shatalov
(1927–) performed the first manual docking of two piloted spacecraft,
Soyuz 4 and Soyuz 5 (January 1969) and flew Soyuz 8 (October 1969) and
Soyuz 10 (April 1971). See Shatalov’s interview in this collection.
20. Konstantin Petrovich Feoktistov (1926–2009), a spacecraft designer at
OKB-1, flew on the Voskhod mission in October 1964. In one interview,
he said, “A man assigned to cope only with control functions is an unjus-
tifiable luxury. No craft is designed to carry dead weight. It must have a
payload that performs a kind of useful work. This can be, for example,
research. Therefore, steps must be taken to render spacecraft control
simple and executable without high skills and during a minimum time”;
Viktor D. Pekelis, Cybernetic Medley, trans. Oleg Sapunov (Moscow:
Mir, 1986), p. 287.
23. Valeriy Fedorovich Bykovskiy (1934–) flew the Vostok 5 mission simulta-
neously with Tereshkova’s Vostok 6 mission in June 1963.
24. Ponomareva, Zhenskoye litso kosmosa, p. 195. The two dogs were
launched aboard Voskhod 3KV spacecraft (publicly named Kosmos-110) in
25. Andriyan Grigoryevich Nikolayev (1929–2004) and Vitaliy Ivanovich
Sevastyanov (1935–2010) flew the Soyuz 9 mission in June 1970. For
details, see Siddiqi, Challenge to Apollo, pp. 724–729.
26. Korolev died on January 14, 1966.
27. Vladimir Mikhaylovich Komarov (1927–1967) was killed on April 24,
1967, during the crash landing of his spacecraft, Soyuz 1, because of a
parachute malfunction. See Siddiqi, Challenge to Apollo, pp. 581–590.
28. Pavel Romanovich Popovich (1930–2009). The incident occurred dur-
ing Popovich’s Vostok 4 mission in August 1962. See Siddiqi, Challenge
to Apollo, p. 360.
29. Pavel Ivanovich Belyayev (1925–1970) commanded the Voskhod 2 mis-
sion in March 1965.
30. For details of the Voskhod 2 mission, when manual attitude control was
for the first time used in an emergency, see Siddiqi, Challenge to Apollo,
pp. 454–460. Belyaev evidently did not explicitly ask for a permission to
switch to manual control, but merely reported a failure of the automatic
attitude control system.
31. Gennadiy Vasilyevich Sarafanov (1942–2005) and Lev Stepanovich
Demin (1926–1998) on Soyuz 15 failed to dock with the Salyut 3
(Almaz) space station in August 1974. See Dennis Newkirk, Almanac
See also a description of this incident in Vladimir Shatalov’s interview in
32. Ponomareva, Zhenskoye litso kosmosa, p. 104. A new version of Soyuz—
Soyuz T—was equipped with the Argon-16 computer complex for the
control of rendezvous and reentry. In June 1980, during its very first
piloted mission, Soyuz T-2, when the ship was approaching the Salyut
predicted and actual velocities, concluded that the automatic ren-
dezvous system was malfunctioning, and shut it off. The Soyuz T-2
commander Yuriy Malyshev successfully performed manual approach
and docking. See Boris Chertok, Rockets and People: The Moon Race,
vol. 4, pp. 507–508. In her account of this event, Ponomareva claims
that the automatic docking system actually failed, and only the pres-
ence of an onboard computer allowed the crew to perform manual
control; see Valentina Ponomareva, “Zachem na bortu kosmonavt,”
in Kosmonavtika, edited by by Yelena Ananyeva (Moscow: Avanta+,
2004), p. 365. According to another version of events, traceable to
Aleksey Yeliseyev, the computer was functioning correctly, but the
crew turned it off because they did not trust its recommendations;
see Rex Hall and David J. Shayler, Soyuz: A Universal Spacecraft
(Chichester, UK: Springer/Praxis, 2003), p. 293; Newkirk, Almanac
Przhiyalkovskiy also mention this episode in their interviews in this
33. The Gemini computer, built by IBM, performed calculations dur-
ing several critical mission phases: prelaunch, ascent backup, orbital
insertion, catch-up, rendezvous, and reentry. See James E. Tomayko,
Computers in Spaceflight: The NASA Experience, NASA History Office,
Contractor Report 182505, March 1988, p. 10.
34. The method of parallel navigation is less economical but requires sim-
pler calculations than the method of free trajectories. See Konstantin
Feoktistov, Traektoriya zhizni (Moscow: Vagrius, 2000), p. 197.
35. The Division of Applied Mathematics of the Mathematical Institute of
the USSR Academy of Sciences in Moscow, led by Mstislav Keldysh. In
1966 the division was reorganized into a separate Institute of Applied
Mathematics. The Division/Institute of Applied Mathematics performed
calculations for the Soviet space program.
36. Arkadiy Aleksandrovich Kosmodemyanskiy (1909–1988), a leading
specialist in rocket dynamics, who also authored biographies of Russian
37. Zhukovskiy Air Force Engineering Academy in Moscow.
38. Viktor Nikolayevich Sokolskiy (1924–2002) was the head of the History
of Aviation and Cosmonautics Section of the Institute of the History of
Natural Science and Technology.
39. For details of Gagarin’s landing, see Siddiqi, Challenge to Apollo,
40. The Russian State Archive of Scientific and Technical Documentation in
Moscow holds documents related to the Soviet space program.
13 Stress Psychiatrist Ada Ordyanskaya
1. Abram Moiseyevich Genin (1922–1999) participated in the medical part
of the Soviet space program from the very first test flights with dogs. In
the years 1955–1975 he worked at the Institute of Aviation Medicine
(later the Institute of Aviation and Space Medicine) of the Ministry of
Defense, heading the department of life support systems. From 1975 to
1999, he worked at the Institute of Biomedical Problems (IMBP) of the
Academy of Sciences in Moscow.
2. On the Moscow Scientific-Research Institute of Psychiatry, see “FGBU
‘Moskovskiy nauchno-issledovatelskiy institut psikhiatrii’ Ministerstva
zdravookhraneniya Rossiyskoy Federatsii,” accessed May 21, 2014,
3. On the Institute of Biomedical Problems, see Oleg Gazenko and Dmitriy
Malashenkov, “Vekhi razvitiya kosmicheskoy meditsiny,” Zemlya i
Vselennaya, no. 6 (1996), accessed May 21, 2014,
port program for cosmonauts was created at the institute in 1975. Its
activities were threefold: (1) providing non-work-related news: TV and
radio reports and family news; (2) organizing communication sessions
with family members, famous actors, singers, etc.; and (3) sending parcels
with personal gifts up to 11 lbs. Psychologists also occasionally served
as a “lightning rod” for outpouring of cosmonauts’ negative emotions.
See Victoria Garshnek, “Soviet Space Flight: The Human Element,”
Nick Kanas, “Psychological Support for Cosmonauts,” Aviation, Space,
and Environmental Medicine 62 (1991): 353–355.
4. Psychologists use counseling and psychotherapy to provide mental
health care, whereas psychiatrists are medical professionals treating men-
5. According to Nick Kanas, “Psychosomatic symptoms have been reported
during space missions. These symptoms have included headaches, gas-
trointestinal problems, and fears of developing various physical illnesses
during the mission”; Nick Kanas, “Psychological, Psychiatric, and
Interpersonal Aspects of Long-Duration Space Missions,” Journal of
Spacecraft and Rockets 27:5 (1990): 459.
6. This notion is close to “adjustment disorder,” which reflects “a maladap-
tive reaction to a clear stressor” with “extended and excessive feelings
of anxiety, depressed mood, or antisocial behaviors”; Ronald J. Comer,
Fundamentals of Abnormal Psychology, 7th ed. (New York: Worth
Publishers, 2010), pp. 17, 108.
7. “Decompensation” refers to the loss of an organism’s ability to “compen-
sate,” or function in spite of stressors and other deficiencies. According
to Sarah Sifers, “The most seriously disruptive reaction to stress is
decompensation. When the stressor situation is extremely demanding
or prolonged . . . any adaptive capacities of the individual may be over-
whelmed. Efficiency is lost, vulnerability to other stressors is increased,
disorders develop, and complete exhaustion makes any self-sustaining
effort impossible. Decompensation usually is both biological and psycho-
logical”; Sarah Sifers, Abnormal Psychology (HarperCollins Publishers
8. Cognitive therapy was pioneered by the American psychiatrist Aaron T.
Beck in the early 1960s. Under this approach, “therapists help clients
recognize the negative thoughts, biased interpretations, and errors in
logic that dominate their thinking and, according to Beck, cause them
to feel depressed. Therapists also guide clients to challenge their dys-
functional thoughts, try out new interpretations, and ultimately apply
the new ways of thinking in their daily lives”; Comer, Fundamentals of
9. Behavior therapy (Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy, or REBT) was
developed by the American psychotherapist Albert Ellis in the mid-
1950s. “In Ellis’s view, mental distress is produced not so much by
upsetting events as it is caused by rigid and maladaptive ways in which
we interpret those events. . . . Like Beck’s approach, REBT consists of
helping the client zero in on these irrational beliefs and then challenging
them.” REBT often involves role playing. “A very shy client, for example,
may be encouraged to sing loudly in a subway or flirt with men she finds
attractive, so that she may come to realize that her life does not fall
apart as a result. Success in challenging false beliefs ultimately eliminates
them, perhaps eliminating the resultant psychological disorder as well”;
Luis A. Cordón, Popular Psychology: An Encyclopedia (Westport, CT:
Greenwood Press, 2005), p. 54.
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