Soyuz 40

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Soyuz 40
Soiuz 40.jpg
Soyuz 40 is launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome on 14 May 1981.
COSPAR ID 1981-042A
SATCAT no. 12454
Mission duration 7 days, 20 hours, 41 minutes, 52 seconds
Orbits completed 124
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft type Soyuz 7K-T
Manufacturer NPO Energia
Launch mass 6,800 kilograms (15,000 lb)
Crew size 2
Members Leonid Popov
Dumitru Prunariu
Callsign Dnieper
Start of mission
Launch date 14 May 1981, 17:16:38 (1981-05-14UTC17:16:38Z) UTC
Rocket Soyuz-U
Launch site Baikonur 1/5
End of mission
Landing date 22 May 1981, 13:58:30 (1981-05-22UTC13:58:31Z) UTC
Landing site 225 km SE of Dzhezkazgan
Orbital parameters
Reference system Geocentric
Regime Low Earth
Perigee 198.1 kilometres (123.1 mi)
Apogee 287 kilometres (178 mi)
Inclination 51.6 degrees
Period 89.6 minutes
Docking with Salyut 6
Soyuz 40 mission patch.svg Leonid Popov & Dumitru Prunariu.jpg
L-R: Popov and Prunariu
Soyuz programme
(Manned missions)
← Soyuz 39
Soyuz T-5 →

The Soyuz 40 mission was a 1981 Soviet manned spaceflight and the final flight of the Soyuz 7K-T spacecraft. It was a collaboration between the Soviet Union and Romania.[1]


Position Crew
Commander Leonid Popov
Second spaceflight
Soviet Union Soviet Union
Research Cosmonaut Dumitru Prunariu
Only spaceflight
Romania Romania

Backup crew

Position Crew
Commander Yuri Romanenko
Soviet Union Soviet Union
Research Cosmonaut Dumitru Dediu
Romania Romania

Mission parameters

  • Mass: 6800 kg
  • Perigee: 198.1 km
  • Apogee: 287 km
  • Inclination: 51.6°
  • Period: 89.06 minutes

Mission highlights

Soyuz 40 was the 16th expedition to Salyut 6 and carried the ninth international crew. It also ended the first phase of the Intercosmos program by carrying Romanian cosmonaut Dumitru Prunariu and Soviet cosmonaut Leonid Popov to the station. In all, nine Intercosmos missions were launched between 1978 and 1981.

Soyuz 40 was the last of the original Soyuz spacecraft (due to its replacement by the Soyuz-T) and the last Soyuz spacecraft to dock with Salyut 6. During the crew's stay, Prunariu studied the Earth’s magnetic field. Earth observations had to be delayed until the last day of the flight, when Salyut 6 passed over Romania in daylight. During this time the crew also tested the station’s orientation system.

See also


  1. ^ The mission report is available here:
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