Project Mercury

America in Space Series

Author: Eugen Reichl

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9780764350696

Category: Science

Page: 144

View: 2879


Project Mercury was America's entry into the manned spaceflight program. When the program began in 1958, the Soviet Union was far ahead of the US in the race for supremacy in space. With immense effort, and in record time, NASA, the newly created spaceflight organization, developed a space transport system with orbital capsule and booster rockets. They used it to send Alan Shepard on a first suborbital "jump" into space in May 1961, and in February 1962 to make John Glenn the first American astronaut to orbit the earth. Nevertheless, the Americans were beaten by the Soviets in the race to put the first man into space. Project Mercury was, however, the foundation for NASA's later success in the race to the moon. All Project Mercury missions are discussed, including details on all craft and the astronauts involved. Superb color, archival images, cutaways and plans are also included.

Catalog of Copyright Entries. Third Series


Author: Library of Congress. Copyright Office

Publisher: Copyright Office, Library of Congress


Category: Copyright

Page: 2054

View: 5337


Includes Part 1, Number 1 & 2: Books and Pamphlets, Including Serials and Contributions to Periodicals (January - December)

Failure Is Not an Option

Mission Control From Mercury to Apollo 13 and Beyond

Author: Gene Kranz

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1439148813

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 416

View: 2183


This memoir of a veteran NASA flight director tells riveting stories from the early days of the Mercury program through Apollo 11 (the moon landing) and Apollo 13, for both of which Kranz was flight director. Gene Kranz was present at the creation of America’s manned space program and was a key player in it for three decades. As a flight director in NASA’s Mission Control, Kranz witnessed firsthand the making of history. He participated in the space program from the early days of the Mercury program to the last Apollo mission, and beyond. He endured the disastrous first years when rockets blew up and the United States seemed to fall further behind the Soviet Union in the space race. He helped to launch Alan Shepard and John Glenn, then assumed the flight director’s role in the Gemini program, which he guided to fruition. With his teammates, he accepted the challenge to carry out President John F. Kennedy’s commitment to land a man on the Moon before the end of the 1960s. Kranz recounts these thrilling historic events and offers new information about the famous flights. What appeared as nearly flawless missions to the Moon were, in fact, a series of hair-raising near misses. When the space technology failed, as it sometimes did, the controllers’ only recourse was to rely on their skills and those of their teammates. He reveals behind-the-scenes details to demonstrate the leadership, discipline, trust, and teamwork that made the space program a success. A fascinating firsthand account by a veteran mission controller of one of America’s greatest achievements, Failure is Not an Option reflects on what has happened to the space program and offers his own bold suggestions about what we ought to be doing in space now.


Author: NASA

Publisher: Periscope Film LLC

ISBN: 9781940453446

Category: Technology & Engineering

Page: 402

View: 8486


On October 4, 1957 at 10:28 Moscow time, a rocket carrying the world's first orbiting satellite roared into space, signaling a new era in human history and the beginning of the so-called ""space race"" - an epic rivalry pitting the technological know-how of the Soviet Union against that of the United States. Despite some highly publicized failures, the USA managed to answer the Russians with the successful launch of Explorer 1 in January of 1958. The next major milestone would be to put a human into orbit, a goal that defined the USA's Project Mercury. After a long series of test launches including a sub-orbital flight with the chimp Ham on board, Mercury astronaut Alan Shepard became the first American in space. On May 5, 1961 Shepard rode a Redstone rocket into space for a sub-orbital flight that lasted under 16 minutes. Nine months later, John Glenn's Friendship 7 capsule was launched into space atop an Atlas booster, and Glenn became the first American to orbit the earth. Glenn remained in space for nearly five hours and circled the planet three times. While these flights represented enormous achievements neither was an outright space race victory: cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin's orbital flight of April 12, 1961 earned him the title of first man in space, and first man to orbit the Earth. Designed by brilliant engineer Max Faget and a team at NASA, the Mercury space capsule represented an entirely new class of vehicle. Just large enough for a single astronaut, the joke about the cramped capsule was that it was ""worn, not ridden."" Despite reports otherwise, the capsule could be and was flown by astronauts who had attitude control thrusters at their disposal and a window for viewing. The capsule also boasted manual re-entry controls. Created by NASA and contractor McDonnell Aircraft, this Familiarization Manual explains all the systems aboard the Mercury space capsule including cabin controls, environmental and stabilization controls and systems, launch and re-entry sequence procedures, and navigation and communications equipment and procedures. Dating from June of 1962, it represents a late revision of documents created at the beginning of the Mercury program. Originally restricted, this manual has been declassified and is presented in its entirety, running nearly 400 pages.

Selecting the Mercury Seven

The Search for America's First Astronauts

Author: Colin Burgess

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 1441984054

Category: Science

Page: 371

View: 5269


The names of the seven Mercury astronauts were announced in April 1959 amid a flurry of publicity and patriotism. This work provides biographical details of all thirty-two finalists for the seven coveted places as America's pioneering astronauts. All of the candidates were among the nation's elite pilots involved in testing new supersonic aircraft capabilities. Most had served as wartime fighter and bomber pilots; some were test pilots on top secret and sophisticated aviation projects, while others were fleet admirals, prisoners of war, and proposed pilots for spaceflight programs such as the Dyna-Soar (X-20). The names of all 32 finalists have been kept secret until very recently. "Selecting the Mercury Seven" also relates the history and difficulties behind the initial choice of candidates. The lives, motivations, military careers, and achievements of the unsuccessful twenty-five finalists are explored first in fully authorized biographies. Test pilots for the U.S. Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps, each man has a fascinating and very different story to tell. All thirty-two men had to endure meticulous, demeaning, and brutal week-long medical examinations at the Lovelace Clinic in New Mexico. This was followed by another torturous week at the Wright Aeromedical Laboratory in Ohio, where they were subjected to extreme fitness and physiological testing, the sole purpose of which was to sort out the Supermen from the near-supermen. The final part of the book examines the accomplishments and spaceflights of the seven successful candidates, bringing their amazing stories right up to date.

Leap of Faith

An Astronaut's Journey Into the Unknown

Author: Gordon Cooper,Bruce Henderson

Publisher: Open Road Media

ISBN: 1504054237

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 279

View: 535


“An exciting insider’s look at Projects Mercury, Gemini and Apollo . . . NASA’s internal politics, disasters, glitches and close calls” by a pioneering astronaut (Publishers Weekly). Gordon “Gordo” Cooper was one of the original Mercury Seven astronauts, pilot for Apollo X, head of flight crew operations for the United States’ first orbiting space station, and the last American to venture into space alone. Stretching from the dawning days of NASA to the far reaches of the unknown, Cooper’s distinguished career as a record-setting astronaut helped shape America’s space program and blazed a trail for generations to come. In this astonishing memoir—written with #1 New York Times bestseller Bruce Henderson—Cooper crosses paths with such aviation luminaries as Amelia Earhart, Wiley Post, and German rocket scientist Wernher von Braun; he shares his early days at Edwards Air Force Base and the endeavors that became the basis for The Right Stuff; he takes us inside NASA with candid accounts of his defeats and accomplishments; he reflects on the triumphs and tragedies of his heroic colleagues; and he finally reveals the reasons behind his belief in extraterrestrial intelligence, including the US military’s long-standing UFO cover-ups. Buckle yourself in for a breathtaking ride because in Leap of Faith, Gordon Cooper takes readers to places they’ve never been before.


100 Years of Boeing

Author: Russ Banham

Publisher: Chronicle Books

ISBN: 1452148953

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 192

View: 5094


Over the course of a century, the Boeing Company has grown from a small outfit operating out of a converted boathouse—producing a single pontoon plane made from canvas and wood—into the world's largest aerospace company. The thrilling story of the celebrated organization is one filled with ambition, ingenuity, and a passion to exceed expectations. In this lavishly illustrated book, published to coincide with Boeing's 100th anniversary, Pulitzer Prize–nominated author Russ Banham recounts the tale of a company and an industry like no other—one that has put men on the moon, defended the free world, and changed the way we live.

Aurora 7

The NASA Mission Reports

Author: Steve Whitfield

Publisher: Apogee Books

ISBN: 9781926592213

Category: Science

Page: 152

View: 4970


Book & DVD. The story of the flight of Aurora 7 has rarely been told. America's fourth manned spaceflight has often been overlooked, sometimes overshadowed by the popularity of the flight of John Glenn which took place just three months earlier. But what is often lost in the telling is the fact that Glenn had almost lost his life when his re-entry had been fraught with problems. Regardless of this danger, Malcolm Scott Carpenter stepped up to his Mercury spacecraft and into the history books. Carpenter was one of America's original seven astronauts and he would only fly into space this one time. His mission was to last less than five hours in space and his assignment was to continue to put the Mercury spacecraft through its paces. With only a single orbital test flight behind them, the engineers at NASA knew that Carpenter would still be taking a monumental risk. On 24 May 1962, Aurora 7, carrying Scott Carpenter leapt off the launch pad aboard the Atlas missile and soared into Earth orbit. After over four and a half hours in orbit Carpenter had fulfilled a busy schedule of assigned tasks, but that schedule had distracted him from the imminent task of re-entry. His small capsule would overshoot the landing site by more than 400 kilometers and would spur the world news agencies to declare him lost. Fortunately, things were not quite so bleak and Carpenter would soon be recovered by the US Navy task force and would return to tell his story. This is the story of America's second manned orbital spaceflight told by the man who flew it from his original reports. On the DVD: Aurora 7 mpg Film, Air-Ground Voice Communication Transcript (35 pages); Description And Performance Analysis (206 pages); Mercury Manned Orbital Capsule Detail Specification (166 pages); Project Mercury: A Chronology (258 pages); Project Mercury Familiarization Manual (431 pages).

NASA's Scientist-Astronauts

Author: Shayler David,Colin Burgess

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 0387493875

Category: Science

Page: 543

View: 6930


This book provides unique access to the story of how scientists were accepted into the American Space Programme, and reveals how, after four difficult decades, the role of the heroic test pilot astronaut has been replaced by men and women who are science orientated space explorers.