Konstantin Feoktistov
Konstantin Petrovich Feoktistov was a Soviet cosmonaut
An astronaut or cosmonaut is a person trained by a human spaceflight program to command, pilot, or serve as a crew member of a spacecraft....

 and an eminent space engineer
An engineer is a professional practitioner of engineering, concerned with applying scientific knowledge, mathematics and ingenuity to develop solutions for technical problems. Engineers design materials, structures, machines and systems while considering the limitations imposed by practicality,...

. Feoktistov also wrote several books on space technology and exploration. The Feoktistov crater
Feoktistov (crater)
Feoktistov is a small lunar crater on the far side of the Moon. It lies in the northern hemisphere, to the northwest of the Mare Moscoviense. This crater has a small outward extension along the northern side, giving it the appearance of two overlapping craters that have merged together. There are...

 on the Far Side of the Moon
The Moon is Earth's only known natural satellite,There are a number of near-Earth asteroids including 3753 Cruithne that are co-orbital with Earth: their orbits bring them close to Earth for periods of time but then alter in the long term . These are quasi-satellites and not true moons. For more...

 is named in his honor.

During the Nazi occupation of Voronezh
Voronezh is a city in southwestern Russia, the administrative center of Voronezh Oblast. It is located on both sides of the Voronezh River, away from where it flows into the Don. It is an operating center of the Southeastern Railway , as well as the center of the Don Highway...

, at the age of just 16, Feoktistov fought with the Soviet Army
Soviet Army
The Soviet Army is the name given to the main part of the Armed Forces of the Soviet Union between 1946 and 1992. Previously, it had been known as the Red Army. Informally, Армия referred to all the MOD armed forces, except, in some cases, the Soviet Navy.This article covers the Soviet Ground...

 against the Nazi German invaders
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, carrying out reconnaissance
Reconnaissance is the military term for exploring beyond the area occupied by friendly forces to gain information about enemy forces or features of the environment....

 missions. After being captured by an Waffen-SS
The Waffen-SS was a multi-ethnic and multi-national military force of the Third Reich. It constituted the armed wing of the Schutzstaffel or SS, an organ of the Nazi Party. The Waffen-SS saw action throughout World War II and grew from three regiments to over 38 divisions, and served alongside...

 Army patrol, Feoktistov was shot by a German officer. However, the bullet went right through his chin and neck and did not kill him. Feoktistov was able to crawl out later and then make his way to the Soviet lines.

After the war was over, Feoktistov enrolled in the Bauman Moscow Higher Technical School as an engineering student, and he graduated in 1949. Feoktistov also later earned a doctorate in physics
Physics is a natural science that involves the study of matter and its motion through spacetime, along with related concepts such as energy and force. More broadly, it is the general analysis of nature, conducted in order to understand how the universe behaves.Physics is one of the oldest academic...

. He joined Mikhail Tikhonravov's OKB
OKB is a transliteration of the Russian acronym for "Опытное конструкторское бюро" - Opytnoe Konstructorskoe Byuro, meaning Experimental Design Bureau...

 (design bureau), and in 1955, Feoktistov formed part of the team that went on to design the Sputnik satellite
In the context of spaceflight, a satellite is an object which has been placed into orbit by human endeavour. Such objects are sometimes called artificial satellites to distinguish them from natural satellites such as the Moon....

s, the Vostok space capsule
Vostok spacecraft
The Vostok was a type of spacecraft built by the Soviet Union. The first human spaceflight in history was accomplished on this spacecraft on April 12, 1961, by Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin....

, the Voskhod space capsule
Voskhod spacecraft
The Voskhod was a spacecraft built by the Soviet Union's space program for human spaceflight as part of the Voskhod programme. It was a development of and a follow-on to the Vostok spacecraft...

, and the Soyuz space capsule
Soyuz spacecraft
Soyuz , Union) is a series of spacecraft initially designed for the Soviet space programme by the Korolyov Design Bureau in the 1960s, and still in service today...

 under the leadership of the Soviet Chief Designer Sergey Korolev. During this time, Feoktistov also worked on a design for an ion-propelled
Ion thruster
An ion thruster is a form of electric propulsion used for spacecraft propulsion that creates thrust by accelerating ions. Ion thrusters are categorized by how they accelerate the ions, using either electrostatic or electromagnetic force. Electrostatic ion thrusters use the Coulomb force and...

 spacecraft to be capable of taking humans to Mars
Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun in the Solar System. The planet is named after the Roman god of war, Mars. It is often described as the "Red Planet", as the iron oxide prevalent on its surface gives it a reddish appearance...


In 1964, Feoktistov was selected as part of a group of engineers for cosmonaut training, and in October of that very same year, he was hastily assigned to the multi-disciplinary Voskhod 1
Voskhod 1
Voskhod 1 was the seventh manned Soviet space flight. It achieved a number of "firsts" in the history of manned spaceflight, being the first space flight to carry more than one crewman into orbit, the first flight without the use of spacesuits, and the first to carry either an engineer or a...

 crew. He was the first civilian to make a space flight, and the only cosmonaut in the Soviet Union who was not a member of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. During his space flight, he spent just over 24 hours and 17 minutes in space.

After the flight of Voskhod 1
Voskhod 1
Voskhod 1 was the seventh manned Soviet space flight. It achieved a number of "firsts" in the history of manned spaceflight, being the first space flight to carry more than one crewman into orbit, the first flight without the use of spacesuits, and the first to carry either an engineer or a...

, Feoktistov's training for any further space mission was discontinued for medical reasons. However, Feoktistov continued his outer space engineering work, and he later became the head of the Soviet space design bureau that designed the Salyut
The Salyut program was the first space station program undertaken by the Soviet Union, which consisted of a series of nine space stations launched over a period of eleven years from 1971 to 1982...

 and Mir
Mir was a space station operated in low Earth orbit from 1986 to 2001, at first by the Soviet Union and then by Russia. Assembled in orbit from 1986 to 1996, Mir was the first modular space station and had a greater mass than that of any previous spacecraft, holding the record for the...

 space station
Space station
A space station is a spacecraft capable of supporting a crew which is designed to remain in space for an extended period of time, and to which other spacecraft can dock. A space station is distinguished from other spacecraft used for human spaceflight by its lack of major propulsion or landing...


Feoktistov resigned from his engineering position with Energia
S.P. Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation Energia
OAO S.P. Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation Energia , also known as RKK Energiya, is a Russian manufacturer of spacecraft and space station components...

and then returned to Bauman Moscow Higher Technical School as a professor in 1990.
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