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Valentina Tereshkova

Valentina Tereshkova

NAME: Valentina Tereshkova (Russian)

BORN/DIED: 6th March 1937

JOB: Astronaut, Engineer, Politician

KEY FACTS: Valentina Tereshkova was born in central Russia. she became interested in skydiving from a young age, making her first jump at the age of 22. In 1922, Valentina was selected to join Russia’s ‘Cosmonaut Corps’. At the time, they were looking for a parachutist under the age of 30 – Valentina fitted this description.

After undergoing lots of training, Valentina piloted the Vostok 6 flight, aged just 26. During this flight she orbited the earth 48 times and spent almost three days in space. She went on to train as a cosmonaut engineer. She was also chosen for several political positions.

ACHIEVEMENTS: She is the first woman to have flown into space. She is seen as a hero in post Soviet Russia for her political work.

Sally Rides

Sally Rides
Sally Rides

NAME: Sally Rides

BORN/DIED: May 26, 1951 – July 23, 2012

JOB: Astronaut, Physicist

KEY FACTS: Ride joined NASA in 1978 and became the first American woman in space in 1983. She remains the youngest American to travel into space, aged 32 at the time. After leaving NASA she worked as a professor of physics and also involved herself in public-outreach programs for NASA.

ACHIEVEMENTS: She has won many awards including the National Space Society’s von Braun Award and the NASA Space Flight Medal. Two schools in America are also named after her.

Elon Musk

Elon Musk
Elon Musk

NAME: Elon Musk

BORN/DIED: 28th June 1971

JOB: Entrepreneur, Inventor, Investor, Engineer

KEY FACTS: Elon grew up in South Africa and developed a real love for reading. He was severely bullied at school. At the age of 12 he taught himself computer programming. He went on to study physics at University and became a U.S. citizen. Throughout his career so far, Musk has been involved in many entrepreneurial projects including co-founding PayPal, becoming the CEO of Tesla Motors and founding Space X. He also unveiled the concept of a high-speed transport network called Hyperloop.

ACHIEVEMENTS: Musk has won many awards such as entrepreneur and innovator of the year and is estimated to be the 80th most wealthy person in the world. His work with projects such as Space X and Hyperloop aims to change the world by creating sustainable methods of transport and reducing global warming.

Chris Hadfield

Chris Hadfield 1

NAME: Chris Hadfield

BORN: 29th August 1959

JOB: Astronaut

KEY FACTS: When she was 10yrs old, Helen saw the Star Wars film and this inspired her to work with robots. She made this dream come true by going on to co-found a robotics company called iRobot. The company designs and builds robots for both military use and for inside and outside the home.

Hadfield is Canadian. He was raised on a farm and became interested in flying from a young age when he saw the Apollo 11 mission on television. He learnt to fly during his time in the Canadian Armed Forces and went on to complete his fighter plane training. He also completed a degree in mechanical engineering.

In 1992, Hadfield was selected to be one of four new Canadian astronauts. He spent twenty years working for NASA in various roles including as the voice of mission control and supporting shuttle launches.

Hadfield participated in some space missions during his time working for NASA. In 2012 he travelled to the International Space Station. He made headlines for singing in space including his tribute to David Bowie.

ACHIEVEMENTS: He received the order of Canada in 2014 amongst other awards.

Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart
Amelia Earhart

NAME: Amelia Earhart

BORN/DIED: 24th July 1897 – 2nd July 1937 (the date she disappeared)

JOB: Pilot and aviation pioneer

KEY FACTS: Amelia was born in Kansas, USA and always had a strong sense of adventure. She was seen as a bit of a ‘tom-boy’ and once hurt herself whilst travelling down a home-made ramp, inspired by a rollercoaster she had seen. She also developed an interest in aeroplanes. She became determined to fly and worked hard to afford the flying lessons. She eventually succeeded, becoming the 16th woman to be issued with a pilots licence. She went on to be the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. in 1937, whilst attempting to fly around the world, Earhart’s plane disappeared and was never found.

ACHIEVEMENTS: She was the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. She broke many records for this, becoming a celebrity figure. She also received the U.S. Distinguished Flying Cross for this accomplishment.

Leonardo Da Vinci

Leonardo Da Vinci
Leonardo Da Vinci

NAME: Leonardo Da Vinci (Italian)

BORN/DIED: 15th April 1452 – 2nd May 1519

Job: Artist, Botanist, Inventor, Scientist

KEY FACTS: Leonardo was born in Florence, Italy. Little is known about his early life. When he was 14 he became apprenticed to a famous artist and went on to become a famous artist himself. However, he was interested in lots of other areas including architecture, mathematics, engineering, geology, astronomy and paleontology. He kept journals full of his sketches which included scientific sketches and drawings of ideas he had for inventions.
Leonardo was fascinated by fossils. He was ahead of his time in recognising that they contained the remains of prehistoric animals. He recorded these observations in his journals.

ACHIEVEMENTS: He is regarded as one of the most famous artists in history with paintings including ‘The Last Supper’ and the ‘Mona Lisa’. He is also remembered for his designs for inventions such as a flying machine.

Neil Armstrong

Neil Armstrong

NAME: Neil Armstrong

BORN/DIED: 5th August 1930 – 25th August 2012

JOB: Astronaut, Space engineer

KEY FACTS: Neil Armstrong was born in Ohio, USA. He developed a love of flying from the age of 2 when his father took him to an air show. He earned a student flight certificate when he was 16yrs old, before he had his drivers license! He was an active boy scout and went on to earn the rank of Eagle Scout. Armstrong studied aeronautical engineering at university and spent some time as a fighter pilot for the navy. in 1962, Armstrong applied and was accepted onto a NASA astronaut program. He famously travelled into space on the Apollo 11 mission and was the first man to walk on the moon.

ACHIEVEMENTS: Armstrong will always be remembered as the first man to walk on the moon. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest honour a civilian can earn from the US government. He is also known for working as a professor of aerospace engineering.

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