This day in history we feature Zhai Zhigang. He is a Chinese astronaut who performed China’s first spacewalk on this day in 2008.
Trivia – Zhai Zhigang
Zhai was born in Longjiang County, Heilongjiang Province. He enrolled at the PLA Air Force Aviation University and studied to be a fighter pilot and then as a squadron leader. Zhai became a lieutenant colonel and pilot trainer in the PLAAF after logging 1000 hours of flying time. In 1996, Zhai was selected to trial for the taikonaut program and was selected to be the first group of fourteen in 1998. He was one of three members of the final group to train for the Shenzhou 5 flight. Yang Liwei was picked for the flight, with Zhai Zhigang ranked second ahead of Nie Haisheng. Zhai was one of the six taikonauts in the final training for Shenzhou 6.
On 26 September 2008, jumping from a Pilatus Porter at an altitude of 2,500 metres (8,200 ft) over Calais, France, Rossy crossed the English Channel with a single jet-powered wing strapped on his back, wearing only a helmet and a flOn 27 September 2008, Zhai became the first Chinese astronaut to spacewalk, completely outside the craft. Fellow crew member Liu Boming stood by at the airlock and could be seen straddling the portal. Zhai successfully completed his spacewalk at 18:25 CST. Zhai wore the Chinese developed Feitian space suit, while Liu wore the Russian derived Orlan-M space suit. Zhai was selected as commander to fly on the Shenzhou 13 alongside Wang Yaping and Ye Guangfu as his second spaceflight mission to the Tiangong space station. On 7 November 2021, Zhai carried out his second spacewalk alongside Wang who became China’s first woman to perform a spacewalk. On 26 December 2021, Zhai carried out his third spacewalk with Ye.
Source – Wikipedia
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