Gemini 5 (GT -5 ) was a manned space flight within the U.S. Gemini program.
Even before the first manned Gemini spacecraft was launched, NASA, the crew of the third manned Gemini flight, announced on 8 February 1965. As commander Gordon Cooper was nominated, which thus became the first man who launched into orbit a second time. As a co-pilot Charles Conrad was divided, a space rookie from the second astronaut selection group.
The backup crew consisted of Neil Armstrong and Elliott Lake, both of which had no experience in space.
Speaker connection ( Capcom ) from Cape Kennedy was Virgil Grissom, commander of Gemini 3 from Houston, now the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center held James McDivitt, the commander of Gemini 4 was Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin the connection.
The flight of Gemini 5 was designed for eight days, twice as long as the foregoing flight of Gemini 4 The goal of Gemini 5 was to demonstrate the reliability of all systems at such a time, and to investigate the influence of weightlessness on astronauts.
For the first time, the power supply should be carried out not only by batteries, but also by fuel cells, also was planned to rendezvous with a target satellite, the Gemini 5 should expose themselves.
A spacewalk as Gemini 4 would not exist. Except board activities of this kind were provided again only for Gemini 8.
Gemini 5 was the first NASA flight for a private badge was used. Cooper brought this one proposal in a covered wagon. The proposal was accepted, but the motto Eight days or bust (about: Eight days or bankruptcy ) was dismissed. For NASA director James E. Webb, it still did not mean a bankruptcy if the mission might not last the scheduled eight days. In fact, missing at the end of the flight an hour the full eight days.
The mission badge of Mercury flights and the Gemini 3 and Gemini 4 were designed long after the flights.
History of the flight
The launch was first scheduled for August 19, 1965, but the countdown was halted 10 minutes before take-off due to a computer problem. A storm teased, the launch was canceled and postponed for two days.
Gemini 5 then launched on 21 August 1965. Already after two hours sat Cooper and Conrad from the target satellite, but shortly afterwards there was a pressure drop in the fuel cells, which the astronauts forced to shut down some systems and made the rendezvous maneuver impossible.
Short term even a termination of the flight was considered. However, when the pressure stabilized and ground tests showed that could be worked with this low pressure, the systems were gradually turned on after again and continued the mission.
On the third day rendezvous maneuvers were flown with a fictitious target satellite. Precise web changes of this kind were new to space travel, but were completed with success. After a few days fell from several control nozzles, was so that no further testing.
Due to inclement weather in the target area, the landing was brought forward by one orbit. The landing point was missed by 145 km by incorrect data in the computer. However, as several ships were involved in the rescue, Cooper and Conrad were recovered by divers in the USS DuPont and taken by helicopter to the main USS Lake Champlain.
Importance within the Gemini program
With eight days placed the crew on a new long-term record in the universe, which the U.S. took to the field against the Soviet Union in the lead. This was also proven that people can live for a longer period in weightlessness than is required for a flight to the moon.
However, the flight also showed some weaknesses with the fuel cells.
The following Gemini 6 flight was scheduled for October. For the first time should this couple a spaceship with an unmanned target satellite, which was launched specifically for it.