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First American Space Walk

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Fifty-one years ago this month, Astronaut Edward H. White II became the first American to perform what in NASA parlance is referred to as an Extra Vehicular Activity (EVA). In everyday terms; a space walk. White, Mission Commander James A. McDivitt and their Gemini IV spacecraft were launched into low… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Manhigh I: Prelude to Space

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Fifty-nine years ago this month, USAF Captain Joseph W. Kittinger successfully completed the first Manhigh aero medical research balloon mission. During his 6.5-hour flight, Kittinger reached an altitude of 95,200 feet above mean sea level. Project Manhigh was a United States Air Force biomedical research program that investigated the human… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Nike Hercules Goes Operational

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Fifty-eight years ago this month, the United States Army Nike Hercules air defense missile system was first deployed in the continental United States. The second-generation surface-to-air missile was designed to intercept and destroy hostile ballistic missiles. The Nike Program was a United States Army project to develop a missile capable… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Final Flight: X-43A Flight 1

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Fifteen years ago today, the first NASA X-43A airframe-integrated scramjet flight research vehicle was launched from a B-52 carrier aircraft high over the Pacific Ocean. The inaugural mission of the HYPER-X Flight Project came to an abrupt end when the launch vehicle departed controlled flight while passing through Mach 1.… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, Final Flight, History

Call to Glory

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Fifty-five years ago today, President John F. Kennedy called a special session of the United States Congress to bring before that august body a variety of issues which he referred to as “urgent national needs”. The transcript of President Kennedy’s speech indicates that the ninth and last issue addressed by… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Last Mercury Mission

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Fifty-three years ago today, NASA Astronaut Leroy Gordon Cooper successfully returned to the Earth following a 22-orbit mission. Designated Mercury-Atlas No. 9 (MA-9), Cooper’s flight was the last orbital space mission of the Mercury Program. The final mission of the Mercury Program began with lift-off from Cape Canaveral, Florida at… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Rescuing Skylab

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Forty-three years ago this month, astronauts Pete Conrad, Joe Kerwin and Paul Weitz became the first NASA crew to fly aboard the recently-orbited Skylab space station. Not only would the crew establish a new record for time in orbit, they would effect critical repairs to America’s first space station which… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Freedom Seven

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Fifty-five years ago this week, United States Navy Commander Alan Bartlett Shepard, Jr. became the first American to be launched into space. Shepard named his Mercury spacecraft Freedom 7. Officially designated as Mercury-Redstone 3 (MR-3) by NASA, the mission was America’s first true attempt to put a man into space.… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

We Seven


Fifty-seven years ago this month, NASA held a press conference in Washington, D.C. to introduce the seven men selected to be Project Mercury Astronauts. They would become known as the Mercury Seven or Original Seven. Project Mercury was America’s first manned spaceflight program. The overall objective of Project Mercury was… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, History

Final Flight: Lady Be Good

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Seventy-three years ago this month, a USAAF/Consolidated B-24D Liberator and her crew vanished upon return from their first bombing mission over Italy. Known as the Lady Be Good, the hulk of the ill-fated aircraft was found sixteen years later lying deep in the Libyan desert more than 400 miles south… Read More

Posted in Aerospace, Final Flight, History