Date: ca. 1963-1966
Country of Origin: United States of America
Overall: 7 1/2 in. wide x 18 in. long x 4 in. diameter, 8.5 lb. (19.05 x 45.72 x 10.16cm, 3.9kg)
Overall, stainless steel; nozzle, phenolic
This is a 100-pound thrust Gemini Orbital Attitude Maneuvering System (OAMS) thruster. OAMS thrusters: (1) provided thrust for the Gemini spacecraft to rendezvous with the Agena target vehicle; (2) controlled the spacecraft in orbit; (3) enabled separation of the Gemini from the second stage Titan launch vehicle and inserted it into orbit; and (4) provided abort capability. The OAMS consisted of 100-pound thrusters to maneuver the craft axially, vertically, and laterally; 85-pound motors for forward and rearward motions; and 25-pound motors to control the spacecraft in its pitch, yaw, and roll axes. The four 100-pound thrusters were located around the exterior middle of the crew cabin.
Gemini OAMS motors used hypergolic (self-igniting) propellants which made the system simple and reliable and eliminated the need for an igniter. They performed satisfactorily in all Gemini missions up to the conclusion of the program in November 1966.
The McDonnell Douglas Corporation gave this OAMS thruster to the Smithsonian Institution in 1969.
Gift of the McDonnell Douglas Corporation