Partner Series

Welcome to “On This Day … in Space!” where we peer back in our archives to find historic moments in spaceflight and astronomy. So enjoy a blast from the past with Space.com’s Hanneke Weitering to look back at what happened on this day in space!


On June 16, 1963, Valentina Nikolayeva Tereshkova became the first woman to travel into space. 


Tereshkova, a cosmonaut with then-Soviet Russia, launched into space on the Vostok 6 mission and orbited Earth 48 times in 70.8 hours. That’s nearly three days alone in space!


The goal of Vostok 6 was to better understand the female body’s reaction to spaceflight. Tereshkova was given the title “Hero of the Soviet Union” when she returned from her voyage. Vostok 6 was her only space mission.


Catch up on our entire “On This Day In Space” series on YouTube with the playlist here.



Email Hanneke Weitering at hweitering@space.com or follow her @hannekescience. Follow us @Spacedotcom, Facebook and Google+.