Paraglider Capsule, Gemini TTV-1
At the start of the Gemini program in 1961, NASA considered having the two-man Gemini capsule land on a runway after its return from space, rather than parachute into the ocean. This controlled descent and landing was to be accomplished by deploying an inflatable paraglider wing of the type invented by Francis Rogallo and NASA's Langley Research Center. Although never used to recover a manned spacecraft, the Paraglider Landing System Program proved useful in developing alternate landing techniques.
This full-scale, manned Test Tow Vehicle (TTV) was built to train Gemini astronauts for flight. It served as the first of two TTVs flown to perfect maneuvering, control, and landing techniques. Eight times a helicopter released the TTV, wings deployed, over the dry lake bed at Edwards Air Force Base, where it landed.
Transferred from NASA to the Museum in 1975.
Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
- Country of Origin
- United States of America
- North American Aviation Inc.
- SPACECRAFT-Manned-Test Vehicles
- Overall: 115 × 92 3/8 in., 4300lb., 304.8cm (292.1 × 234.6cm, 1950.5kg, 10 ft.)
- Other (wheel to wheel): 92 in. (233.7cm)
- Other (capsule): 103 7/8 in. (263.8cm)