Leonov, Aleksei Arkhipovich

Leonov, Aleksei Arkhipovich ŭlˌyĭksyāˈ ärkhˌyĭpôˈvyĭch [key], 1934–2019, Soviet-Russian cosmonaut and military officer. While serving as copilot of Voskhod 2 (Mar. 18–19, 1964), he became the first person to perform extravehicular activity. Leonov was also command pilot for Soyuz 19 in the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project (July 15–21, 1975), the first Soviet-American space mission. He became an air force major general in 1975 and later served as chief cosmonaut and in other posts before he retired in 1992. He and former U.S. astronaut David Scott wrote Two Sides of the Moon: Our Story of the Cold War Space Race (2006).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2024, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Space Exploration: Biographies