Astronaut John Glenn in Earth orbit

Astronaut John Glenn in Earth orbit

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Credit: NASA/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: American astronaut John Glenn (1921-2016) in the Friendship 7 spacecraft during his first Earth orbit on 20 February 1962. This was the first American mission to put a human in Earth orbit, the Soviets had previously placed a cosmonaut in orbit on 12 April 1961. The mission was successful and Glenn completed three orbits in 4 hours and 55 minutes.

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