1975, The first joint international space mission
On this day during on July 15, 1975, the first joint international space mission happened. The Soyuz 19 and Apollo 18 launched at Baikonour Site and Kennedy site. Soyuz 19 and Apollo 18 was the very first international space mission carried out jointly by the Soviet Union and United States.
Apollo–Soyuz Test Project
The first international space mission was officially known as the “Apollo–Soyuz Test Project“. The Soyuz 19 launched around 12:20 and Apollo 18 launched 19:50.
First international handshake in space
Meanwhile, the Apollo–Soyuz mission commanders, Stafford and Leonov, exchanged the first international handshake in space through the open hatch of the Soyuz. Most importantly, it was memorable handshake in space.
Soyuz 19 crewed by Alexei Leonov (Commander) and Valeri Kubasov (Flight Engineer). Apollo 18 crewed by Thomas P. Stafford (Commander), Vance D. Brand (Command Module Pilot) and Donald K. Slayton (Docking Module Pilot).
However, this was the last space mission for Soviet cosmonaut Alexei Leonov. Alexei become the first person to walk in space during the March 1965, Voskhod 2 mission.
Soyuz 19 and Apollo 18 landed in 21 July and 24 July 1975.