Thursday, December 15, 2016

Gemini 6A launched (finally) 1965

Gemini VI-A crew: Pilot Thomas P. Stafford, Command Pilot Walter M. Schirra, Jr.

Gemini VI-A launched December 15, 1965, just eleven days after Gemini 7 lifted off December 4.  The original launch for Gemini VI-A had been scheduled for October 25.  The mission was to rendezvous and dock with the Agena Target Vehicle.  But shortly after the unmanned Agena was launched, a catastrophic failure occured and it exploded over the Atlantic Ocean.  Walter M. Schirra, Jr and Thomas P. Stafford were already in Gemini VI-A when the mission was scrubbed.

After looking at the situation, NASA decided to alter the mission, and have Gemini VI-A rendezvous with Gemini 7.  The spacecraft would not actually dock, since they were not designed for such a maneuver but would 'rendezvous' which meant they would come close to each other.

The vehicles came within one foot of each other while talking over the radio.

Before returning to Earth, Schirra noticed a UFO moving south in a polar orbit:

No comments: