Capsule, Gemini XI

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Display Status:

This object is not on display at the National Air and Space Museum. It is either on loan or in storage.

Collection Item Summary:

Gemini 11 was launched on September 12, 1966, on a 3-day mission. Astronauts Pete Conrad (commander) and Dick Gordon (pilot) rendezvoused and docked with their Agena target vehicle on their first orbit around the Earth, pioneering a technique that would later be used in the Apollo lunar landings. The astronauts used the Agena's engine to reach a record-setting altitude of 1370 km (850 mi.). Dick Gordon also performed a 38 minute space walk in which he fastened a tether to the docked Agena. Artificial gravity was simulated by separating the Gemini from the tethered Agena and firing thrusters to create a slow spin. But Gordon experienced overheating and exhaustion during his space walk which showed that the problems of extra-vehicular activity (EVA) had not yet been solved.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration transferred Gemini 11 to the Smithsonian in August 1967.

Collection Item Long Description:

Data Source

National Air and Space Museum

Restrictions & Rights

Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum

Credit Line

Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Materials

  • Structure: Titanium; cylindrical section: beryllium alloy; conical section: Rene 41 (nickel-steel alloy); heat shield: silicone elastomer
  • Skin: Rene-41
  • Sample of corrosion on hatch sent to Laboratory in March/2000 - copy of report in file

Dimensions

  • Overall: 130 in. tall x 89 in. wide (330.2 x 226.1cm)
  • Other: 130 in. tall (330.2cm)
  • Support (at base): 89 in. diameter (226.1cm)

Country of Origin

United States of America

Type

SPACECRAFT-Manned

Inventory Number

A19680260000