Feb 06

Space Rocket History #49 – Gemini Systems Design – 1962

On January 3 1962, “Gemini” became the official designation of the Mercury Mark II program. The name had been suggested by Alex  Nagy of NASA Headquarters because the twin stars Castor and Pollux in constellation Gemini (the Twins) seemed to him to symbolize the program’s two-man crew, its rendezvous mission, and its relation to Mercury. Coincidentally, the astronomical symbol (II) for Gemini, the third constellation of the zodiac, corresponded neatly to the Mark II designation…

OAMS and RCS

OAMS and RCS

fig33Figure 33. The emergency parachute recovery system for the half-scale paraglider flight test vehicle for Phase II-A of the development program - Copy

Nomenclature.

Nomenclature.

Partial Spacesuit

Partial Spacesuit

Agena B

Agena B

Jan 30

Space Rocket History #48 – Gemini Design – 1961

“The main trouble with the Mercury capsule was that most system components were in the pilot’s cabin; and often, to pack them in this very confined space, they had to be stacked like a layer cake and components of one system had to be scattered about the craft to use all available space. This arrangement generated a maze of interconnecting wires, tubing, and mechanical linkages. To replace one malfunctioning system, other systems had to be disturbed; and then, after the trouble had been corrected, the systems that had been disturbed as well as the malfunctioning system had to be checked out again.”  James Chamberlin

Proposed Lunar Lander

Proposed Lunar Lander

Modified Titan II Booster

Modified Titan II Booster

Adapter Section of Mark II

Adapter Section of Mark II

Ejection Seats

Ejection Seats

Fuel Cell

Fuel Cell

Rendezvous

Rendezvous

Jan 23

Space Rocket History #47 – Gemini Concepts

This brings us to Project Gemini.  Gemini started after Apollo had begun, in part to answer a crucial question for Apollo. Was rendezvous and docking in orbit a feasible basis for a manned lunar landing mission?

One Man Space Station

One Man Space Station

Rendezvous Concepts

Rendezvous Concepts

Mark II Spacecraft

Mark II Spacecraft

Jan 16

Space Rocket History #46 – Mariner 4

Mariner 4’s primary objective was to conduct closeup scientific observations of Mars and to transmit these observations to Earth. Additional goals included performing field and particle measurements in interplanetary space, and providing experience and knowledge of engineering capabilities for interplanetary flights of long duration…

Mariner 4

Mariner 4

Launch on Atlas-Agena

Launch on Atlas-Agena

Mariner 4's Photo Path

Mariner 4’s Photo Path

Mariner Crater on Mars

Mariner Crater on Mars

Highland Craters

Highland Craters

Mars Image given to President Johnson

Mars Image given to President Johnson

Jan 09

Space Rocket History #45 – Voskhod-1with Kamarov, Yegorov, and Feoktistov – Part 2

From the Control center Yuri Gagarin’s kept the crew informed on everything taking place on the now deserted launching site. Finally the command was given: “Stand by!” Now, It would be a matter or minutes before the launch. Commands followed in quick succession. The flight recorder was switched on, the engines started up. There was not much noise at first. But, after the command “Main Engine” the noise and the vibration grew stronger. The final command came at 07:30 UT “Start!”

Cosomonauts

Cosomonauts

Voskhod Capsule

Voskhod capsule

Voskhod Production

Voskhod Production

Ready to Launch

Ready to Launch

Launch

Launch

Stamp

Stamp

Jan 02

Space Rocket History #44 – Voskhod-1with Kamarov, Yegorov, and Feoktistov – Part 1

Premiere Khrushchev was not willing to wait until Soyuz for another space first.  Khrushchev believed, There could be no final victories in the race for space propaganda.  He knew the US was working on project Gemini which would carry two astronauts in 1965.  So, as a means to upstage the US, Khrushchev ordered Chief Designer Korolev to fit three cosmonauts into the Voskhod spacecraft that was designed for two…

By Dave

By Dave

Yegorov

Yegorov

Feoktistov

Feoktistov

Komarov

Komarov

Voskhod 1 and 2

Voskhod 1 and 2

Mission Patch

Mission Patch

Dec 19

Space Rocket History #43 – Ranger-7, Nimbus-1, European Space Organizations, and Christmas From the Moon

You may recall from episode 32 Ranger- 4 was the first  U.S. spacecraft to reach another celestial body. However, Ranger-4 failed it primary mission of returning pictures from the moon…

The Moon From Ranger-7

The Moon From Ranger-7

The Moon From Ranger-7

The Moon From Ranger-7

Ranger-7

Ranger-7  Block III Design

Nimbus-1

Nimbus-1

Lucky Peanuts

Lucky Peanuts By Dave

 

ERSO Logo

ERSO Logo

Nov 28

Space Rocket History #40 – The First Woman in Space, Vostok 5 & 6 with Bykovsky and Tereshkova – Part 2

Vostok 5’s orbit turned out to be lower than the expected 181 by 235 km. The actual orbit was 175 by 222 km.  Initial calculations indicated the orbit of Vostok 5 would not decay for 10 or 11 days, however more conservative estimates, taking into account the increased solar activity and the resulting expanding of the upper atmosphere showed that the orbit could decay after only 8 days. With no way of predicting where Vostok 5 might land, the planned eight-day mission was now in question…

Tereshkova

Tereshkova

Tereshkova

Tereshkova

Tereshkova on TV

Tereshkova on TV