Saturday, June 14, 2014

Retro Saturday: Gemini VIII, This is Houston Flight

Click the arrow to watch the film. You may be subjected to an ad first. Video source: wdtvlive42 YouTube channel.

This week's Retro Saturday film is a 1966 NASA documentary about Gemini 8. It was the first docking of two spacecraft in orbit.

It was also Neil Armstrong's first flight, and almost his last.

Shortly after Armstrong and Dave Scott docked with the Agena, the #8 Orbit Attitude and Maneuvering System (OAMS) thruster on the capsule stuck open, causing a roll that accelerated to one spin per second. Armstrong fired the Re-Entry Control System (RCS) thrusters to get out of the spin. Mission rules required an abort after firing the RCS thrusters, so this ended the flight.

Armstrong had another close call on May 6, 1968 when his Lunar Landing Research Vehicle lost control and he was forced to eject just before it crashed.

Click the arrow to watch the Lunar Landing Research Vehicle crash.

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