Some of our greatest achievements in space are some of the least known. Consider the iconic pop artist Andy Warhol and his secret art gallery on the Moon. It's a very real thing, thanks to a tiny ceramic chip smuggled aboard Apollo 12.
There's more to space than Sputnik, Apollo, and the Space Shuttle. Stepping on the Moon was certainly a big one, well done America! But when it comes to less known achievements (and casualties) in space, take a look at what the Soviets were up to!
10.) Warhol's dick on the Moon
Warhol was supposed to do a stylized spaceship or his initials, but he clearly drew a penis:
The secret modern art exhibit on the moon. This tiny ceramic chip was smuggled aboard Apollo 12 with drawings by Robert Rauschenberg, David Novros, John Chamberlain, Claes Oldrnburg, Forrest Myers, and Andy Warhol. Warhol, of course, drew the dick. It was stuck in the wrapping blankets of the landing module and is still there. The only art museum in space.
9.) A sexy dress for space
Having sex in zero gravity is not an easy task, but Vanna Bonta came up with the solution:
The 2Suit. Designed in 2008 for sex in space. Although I don't think it was actually used in space so I'm not sure that counts. I think the operation of the suit (but not sex) was tested in a reduced gravity aircraft.
8.) Apollo-Soyuz Test Project
Cold war or not, both sides wanted to show that the Space Race was over:
Although it's fairly well known among people who know about this, the 1975 Apollo-Soyuz joint flight remains an event of underrated importance. Only people with a reasonable knowledge of the space race know about this event, even though it is probably the best example of the détente between the USA and the USSR. Could you ever imagine two rival superpowers sharing their common triumph?
It was the last flight of the Apollo module.
7.) The Soviets checking out Venus
macshome thinks the Soviet Venera program was pretty remarkable:
Between 1961-1985 The Soviets sent probes to 10 landings, 2 balloon probes, 4 orbiters, and 11 flybys or impacts on Venus. They even sent back pictures from the surface.
The Devil Drives a Rotary agrees:
This was my suggestion as well, and I will comment to promote it. A little trivia: the Venera probes were the first probes to successfully reach another planet and enter it's atmosphere. When Venera 7 and 8 landed, it was revealed that the surface temperature of Venus is 470°C with a pressure of 90 atmospheres. Not a very friendly place for man or machine.
6.) Voyager 2
Spiegel Q. Hernandez ESQ. is fed up with the negligence of the less-known Voyager probe:
V2 was launched earlier than V1 but due to the positioning of earth at launch time V1 overtook V2. Everybody knows about Voyager 1 like they know about Ali. But none o'yall know about Voyager 2.
The George Foreman of space.
Don't know about V2, but you can check out what the V1 does here!
5.) Huygens photographing Titan
philaDLJ sent us a photo of the Saturn's moon:
Huygens hitching a ride on Cassini and successfully landing on Titan (the only moon with a dense atmosphere) on January 14, 2005. It even managing to snap a photo before peaceing out. It was the most distant landing of any craft launched from Earth.
Actually, they gathered a whole movie worth of data:
Suggested By: philaDLJ, Photo Credit: Getty Images
4.) The Soviet Moonwalker
JayHova puts it simply:
Lunokhod 1 - the first remote controlled object to be successfully operated on another celestial body.
And Luna 2, the first man-made object to land on another celestial body.
3.) Shots from the other side
First one to send back images from the far side of the moon. Which is why most (if not all) the features on that side have Russian names. And the mechanics of doing that are pretty complex. The whole craft was the camera, and had to me maneuvered to face the moon. Once the pictures were taken, the film was developed, scanned and sent back to Earth fax-like. It had a photocell which detected the Moon and started the whole process automatically.
All that in 1959.
2.) The other Space Shuttle
Yeah-yeah, I know. The Buran never worked, and the Russians let it rot, or get turned into a restaurant:
It was the Jaguar XJ220 of space shuttles, and the fall of the Soviet Union didn't help. But listen to JimSlade for a second:
The Russian 'Space Shuttle', the Buran, actually took off, orbited, and returned to earth by REMOTE. that's right folks, not a person on board. Sadly, it was destroyed once Communist Russia broke apart in the early 90s, but that's a major feat in my book.
Suggested By: JimSlade, Photo Credit: Getty Images
1.) Aleksey Leonov's walk in the park
JustHereForTheFood will tell you about one badass Russian:
The first EVA by Alexey Leonov. He only had a 50 foot piece of wire to tether him to the space craft and the Russians didn't account for the pressure (or lack there of) in space so his space suit ballooned up to the point where he couldn't get back though the hatch. So he had to release some pressure by undoing the seal around his glove so he could fit back in, of course this also caused him to get the bends. When the craft finally did begin re-entry into the atmosphere, they lost navigation and ended up crash landing somewhere in Siberia... where he had to wait for three days for rescue... in the middle of winter... with the bends.
Welcome back to Answers of the Day - our daily Jalopnik feature where we take the best ten responses from the previous day's Question of the Day and shine it up to show off. It's by you and for you, the Jalopnik readers. Enjoy!
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