Late Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin’s historic flight around the Earth in 1961 has been recreated in a movie.
There is no film to show what Gagarin saw through the view ports of his Vostok capsule, there is only an audio recording of his observations, which has now been matched to high-definition video shot from the station.
“When you combine these pictures of what he was genuinely able to see with the excitement and tingle in his voice, it’s quite amazing,” the BBC quoted film director and space historian Dr Chris Riley as saying.
Gagarin became the first human to venture above the Earth’s atmosphere when he blasted away from the Tyuratam missile range (now the Baikonur Cosmodrome) in Kazakhstan at 0607 GMT on 12 April 1961.
His 108-minute journey around the globe took him across the Soviet republics, across the Pacific Ocean, over the Straits of Magellan in South America, above the Atlantic and Africa before re-entry and a bailout back to the ground near the city of Engels in southwest Russia.
The view down to Earth along this same path has now been filmed from the International Space Station (ISS).
Riley said organising the filming onboard the busy space lab was not straightforward.
“My stipulation was that we had to film it at the same time of day that Gagarin had seen it, to get the Sun angles right. Those chances only happen every six weeks,” he explained.
FirstOrbit will have a YouTube premiere next month to celebrate Gagarin’s achievement 50 years on.