Cosmonauts think perhaps the most superstitious people on the planet. In flight they take on the tradition with a sprig of sage, as it keeps longer than other plants, and smell like the earth, and on the launch pad crew decided to accompany the song «Earth through the porthole.»
Black Monday and the unlucky date
The beginning of «cosmic superstition» put the famous chief designer Sergei Korolev. It is known that the Kingdom did not like starts on Monday and always bore the date when it fell on Monday. Why — and remains a great mystery.
Nevertheless, his point of view Queens stood at the top, because of this, even ignite serious conflicts. Spaceships on Monday in the Soviet Union did not fly — the first three years of the space age. Then they began to fly, there were 11 accidents. Since 1965, Monday as the Soviet and now Russian space program almost official «does not start» day.
There are at Baikonur and «unlucky date.» Home has never appointed on October 24. On this day, do not spend on the launch pad no serious work. October 24th, 1960 at the Baikonur launch pad explosion rocket ICBM R-16, killing dozens of people. October 24th, 1963 at the launch pad broke rocket R-9A. Eight people were burned.
Another superstition of the famous designer was «happy» operator, which has always pushed the team to «start», the captain Smirnitsky. Not a single missile launch did not do without Smirnitskaya. Even when that was eczema, he still pressed the button, because the king believed that the man «light hand».
The same Korolev, strictly forbidden to appear on the launch pad during launch one of its constructors (one day during his watch there was some trouble), and personally saw to it that he did not seem to even bow.
Astronauts never give autographs before the first flight. Some put the principle avoid autograph in black ink. However, the entire crew must sign for the bottle of vodka, you drink on the ground, in the Kazakh steppe after a successful flight.
We are pleased to leave the astronauts autographs at the hotel room door, where they spent the night before the launch. Paint or wash these autographs is strictly prohibited.
For the first time «to use» can be — 12 days prior to the start, when the primary and backup crews arrived to Baikonur on «stints». Astronauts 'double' must pass on 100 grams of pure industrial alcohol. «The basic structure» can only drink a sip of champagne — after approval by the state commission in the crew.
For half an hour before the start of the astronauts drink-doubles «for luck» core team, along with journalists. Doubles only twice did not participate in this tradition. The cases were unsuccessful, and since then kept holy tradition of a half-hour. After returning from a flight, the astronauts planted a tree on his estate to the alley of astronauts in Baikonur.
The woman on the board
They say that because of the superstition Valentina Tereshkova were afraid to send into space — all remembered the old sea will take on the expense of women on the ship. But the Soviet leadership did not differ superstition. In 1963, the eve of International Women's Conference in Moscow, was to fly to space was a woman.
Themselves with a mustache
In the space for a long time were not allowed baleen. During the flight, mustachioed Victor Zholobova were the problem, and the program had to stop early.
Other oddities kosmonavtskie
Together with the crew in space goes soft toy, which plays a role not just a mascot, but also helps astronauts to capture the moment when a state of weightlessness.
Start a ship astronauts would never call the «last»: for example, «the last start for the Mir space station ...» would prefer to be called «extreme», «final». Also, the astronauts will never say goodbye to the mourners.
Astronauts from the stairs before landing in the cabin have to wave goodbye.
At the launch site at Plesetsk before launching rocket on it, they will say, «Tanya.» They say it's name led to the first rocket in love with a certain officer, Tanya. Once, when forgot to bring the case to a happy name, the rocket exploded before launch.
One day prior to the start made to watch the movie «White Sun of the Desert», for more than 30 years, so do all the astronauts. This is due to a tragic chapter in the history of the domestic space: the death of June 30, 1971 while returning to Earth as part of the crew Dobrowolski, Volkov and Patsaeva.
The next flight to the «Soyuz-12» was held successfully, and the astronauts found that before the flight crew saw the movie «White Sun of the Desert.» The following crews, too, to see this picture. After all flew into space without any problems.
Astronauts have considered it a rule to pee on the wheel of a bus carrying them to the launch pad. After that, the suit fastens it tight, and the next opportunity to be presented only to relieve a few hours even in outer space.
The ritual went like as from the time of Yuri Gagarin, who asked to stop the car in the Kazakh steppe on the way to the «Baikonur». Others believe the founder of this tradition, the general designer Sergei Korolev, who always watered the rocket before launch.
Finally before the start of the astronauts get a kick from the head of a user-friendly.
But with the number 13 have any special superstition Russian astronauts and rocket scientists are not connected. Of course, this number is very few people like that, but madness in «Friday the 13th» we do not have one. Then in the NASA 13th the number of hate — have already been unpleasant incidents. For example, the famous moon «Apollo 13» off the ground to the satellite on April 11 and April 13 on board the ship there was an explosion — blew up a tank of oxygen.