Encyclopedia Astronautica
1969.10.12 - Soyuz 7


Tested spacecraft systems and designs, manoeuvring of space craft with respect to each other in orbit, conducted scientific, technical and medico-biological experiments in group flight. Was to have docked with Soyuz 8 and transferred crew while Soyuz 6 took film from nearby. However failure of rendezvous electronics in all three craft due to a new helium pressurization integrity test prior to the mission did not permit successful rendezvous and dockings.

Rain all night at the cosmodrome, but clearing at dawn. Kamanin's bosses Mozzhorin and Efimov tag along for the day. They wake the Soyuz 7 crew at 07:30. The State Commission meets at Area 2 at 10:30, finds that all is ready, and sets launch for 13:44:42. Launch proceeds normally and the crew transmits television from the spacecraft on their first orbit. At 16:18 Shonin and Kubasov aboard Soyuz 6 conduct the first Svinets experiment, tracking the launch of a ballistic missile. There is no firm verbal report on how it went, but telemetry confirmed the operation of the device, so it must have been successful. The Air Force officers meet with Mishin. Kamanin is still worried that the modified capsule separation mechanism has not been proven in space since the Soyuz 5 failure. Mishin assures them that all is in control. In the afternoon the officers go duck hunting, bagging 3 ducks and 1 goose.

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