On this day in 1991 – May 18th – British cosmonaut Helen Sharman was launched into space on board a Soyuz spacecraft.

Sharman the first Briton and first Western European woman in space. With crew mates Anatoli Artsebarsky and Sergei Krikalev, she orbited Earth for two days before docking with the Mir space station.

Mona Evans
For news, activities, pictures and more, sign up to the Astronomy Newsletter!