A few knives and firearms from the space age. Taken from a Gizmodo article not really worth reading. A few more pictures and some other items unrelated to weapons.

Model 17 “Astro” hand-wrought survival knives created by Randall Made Knives were carried by Mercury astronauts. The fixed blade knives with a large guard and a 5.5 inch blade were strong enough to pry open the capsule hatch if needed, and featured a hollow handle to store survival essentials in case the spacecraft landed in rough terrain or in Soviet territory.

Case ”Astronaut’s Knife – M-1″ machete

You can buy a replica here: Case


Astronaut Knife M-1 Commemorative Model #: 12019 Regular price $232.99

TP-82, the Soviet machete gun
The Russian Soyuz Space capsule usually has weapons in its survival kit to protect astronauts from wild animals-especially bears–if it happened to land in remote forest regions, such as Siberia. The three barrel, two-over/one-under TP-82 gun was developed specifically for the Soyuz program. One barrel is for shooting cartridges, one is for firing shotgun shells, and the third to fire flares, and the removable stock can be used as a machete. The initiator and one of the participants in its development was cosmonaut Alexei Leonov, the first spacewalker, who once were stranded in a remote forest for days after landing. From 1982 until 2006, cosmonauts always carried a TP-82 into space-even to ISS–hidden in the Soyuz Portable Emergency-Survival Kit.

Soviet laser pistols
Yes, these are real handheld laser weapons developed in the 1980s for cosmonauts. These futuristic pistols used pyrotechnic flashbulb ammunition, and their primary function was to disable optical sensors on enemy spacecraft or satellites. Allegedly the laser beams of these recoilless guns were energetic enough to burn through a helmet visor, or to blind anybody from 65 feet.

Emerson Specwar Knife
This folding knife was made under contract for NASA for use on Space Shuttle missions and on the ISS.

Makarov pistol
Used since 2007 because Roscosmos ran out of stock of the special ammunition for TP-82.


  1. We should add something a bit more impressive. The soviet Union’s Almaz space recon station of the 1970’s carried a 23 mm single barrel revolver auto cannon. I kid you not. The cannon was the Rikhter R-23. And they were test fired, in space!


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