26 Facts About Gemini program


Gemini program's objective was the development of space travel techniques to support the Apollo mission to land astronauts on the Moon.

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All Gemini program flights were launched from Launch Complex 19 at Cape Kennedy Air Force Station in Florida.

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Gemini program believed Gemini spacecraft could fly in lunar operations before Project Apollo, and cost less.

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Gus Grissom, acting as Houston capsule communicator when Ed White performed his spacewalk on Gemini program 4, is heard on flight recordings pronouncing the spacecraft's call sign "Jeh-mih-nee 4", and the NASA pronunciation is used in the 2018 film First Man.

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Apollo Gemini program was conceived in early 1960 as a three-man spacecraft to follow Project Mercury.

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Gemini program presented two initial versions of a two-man spacecraft, then designated Mercury Mark II, at a NASA retreat at Wallops Island in March 1961.

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Gemini program was previously the chief aerodynamicist on Avro Canada's Avro Arrow fighter interceptor program.

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Gemini program was managed by the Manned Spacecraft Center, located in Houston, Texas, under direction of the Office of Manned Space Flight, NASA Headquarters, Washington, D C Dr George E Mueller, Associate Administrator of NASA for Manned Space Flight, served as acting director of the Gemini program.

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Gemini program's team was responsible for completion of the complex pad close-out procedures just prior to spacecraft launch, and he was the last person the astronauts would see prior to closing the hatch.

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Unlike Mercury, Gemini program used completely solid-state electronics, and its modular design made it easy to repair.

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Gemini program reviewed several films of Atlas and Titan II ICBM failures, which he used to estimate the approximate size of a fireball produced by an exploding launch vehicle and from this he gauged that the Titan II would produce a much smaller explosion, thus the spacecraft could get away with ejection seats.

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Gemini program was the first astronaut-carrying spacecraft to include an onboard computer, the Gemini program Guidance Computer, to facilitate management and control of mission maneuvers.

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Unlike Mercury, Gemini program used in-flight radar and an artificial horizon, similar to those used in the aviation industry.

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Gemini program added control of the spacecraft's translation with a pair of T-shaped handles .

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Original intention for Gemini program was to land on solid ground instead of at sea, using a Rogallo wing rather than a parachute, with the crew seated upright controlling the forward motion of the craft.

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Gemini program was equipped with an Orbit Attitude and Maneuvering System, containing sixteen thrusters for translation control in all three perpendicular axes, in addition to attitude control as in Mercury.

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The backup crew for Gemini program 3 was Grissom and Borman, who were slated for Gemini program 6, to be the first long-duration mission.

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Gemini program reassigned See to be the prime commander of Gemini 9 and put Scott as pilot of Gemini 8 and Charles Bassett as the pilot of Gemini 9.

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In 1964 and 1965, two Gemini program missions were flown without crews to test systems and the heat shield.

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McDonnell Aircraft, the main contractor for Mercury and Gemini program, was one of the original bidders on the prime contract for Apollo, but lost out to North American Aviation.

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McDonnell later sought to extend the Gemini program by proposing a derivative which could be used to fly a cislunar mission and even achieve a crewed lunar landing earlier and at less cost than Apollo, but these proposals were rejected by NASA.

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Range of applications were considered for Advanced Gemini program missions, including military flights, space station crew and logistics delivery, and lunar flights.

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Some Advanced Gemini proposals used "off-the-shelf" Gemini spacecraft, unmodified from the original program, while others featured modifications to allow the spacecraft to carry more crew, dock with space stations, visit the Moon, and perform other mission objectives.

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Big Gemini program was another proposal by McDonnell Douglas made in August 1969.

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Two baseline spacecraft were defined: a nine-man minimum modification version of the Gemini B called Min-Mod Big G and a 12-man advanced concept, having the same exterior geometry but with new, state-of-the-art subsystems, called Advanced Big G Three launch vehicles-Saturn IB, Titan IIIM, and Saturn INT-20 were investigated for use with the spacecraft.

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Blue Gemini program was canceled in 1963 by Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, who decided the NASA Gemini program flights could conduct necessary military experiments.

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