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  Photo of the week 375 (December 31, 2011)

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Author Topic:   Photo of the week 375 (December 31, 2011)
heng44
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From: Netherlands
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posted 12-31-2011 03:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

Today’s photo is another treasure from the Gemini archives. It shows Gemini 7 as seen from Gemini 6 during the historic first rendezvous in December 1965. Spacecraft 7 is partially obscured by the nose of 6. Zooming in on the window we can see Gemini 7 pilot Jim Lovell pointing a camera (or a light meter?) at 6, obviously enjoying the company.

Happy New Year!
Ed Hengeveld

Henry Heatherbank
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From: Adelaide, South Australia
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posted 12-31-2011 03:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Henry Heatherbank     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This is an interesting photo so soon after the Gemini 10 in-cabin video (on another thread) showing just how cramped the interior of the Gemini spacecraft was.

There is a better appreciation of how little room Lovell (and Borman) would have had on Gemini 7, and how Lovell's face would have been pressed up against that window!!

I grew up wanting nothing more than to have flown on a Gemini, but after seeing these photos, I'm not so sure any more!!

spaced out
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From: Paris, France
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posted 12-31-2011 04:38 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaced out   Click Here to Email spaced out     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well, Lovell's face is pressed up against the window in order to get a shot of the other spacecraft, but it's certainly true that the interior was incredibly cramped.

I've said before that in my opinion the toughest space mission ever undertaken was Gemini 7. By volunteering to suffer through it Borman and Lovell certainly earned their seats on the first mission to the moon.

moorouge
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posted 12-31-2011 08:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for moorouge   Click Here to Email moorouge     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What has Lovell got on his head? Or is it a loose card from the flight plan?

LM-12
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From: Ontario, Canada
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posted 12-31-2011 08:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Was there not a concern on the long-duration Gemini 7 flight that Borman and Lovell could develop serious circulation problems in their legs having to sit in the same position for 14 days? Or does weightlessness change all that?

There was no EVA on Gemini 7 that would have at least given them an opportunity to stretch their legs. Was that because of limited consumables?

I am surprised and impressed that both Borman and Lovell were able to walk off the recovery helicopter onto the deck of the USS Wasp with minimal assistance.

mach3valkyrie
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posted 12-31-2011 09:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mach3valkyrie   Click Here to Email mach3valkyrie     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Gemini Spacecraft interior has been compared to the front seat of a Volkswagen Beetle from that era, as far as cubic feet per man. However, I think I'd take the VW.
I think that's the helmet that was worn with the lightweight spacesuit on this mission we see on Lovell's head.

heng44
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posted 12-31-2011 10:46 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by moorouge:
What has Lovell got on his head? Or is it a loose card from the flight plan?
The Gemini 7 crew wore aviators' helmets under the soft hoods of their spacesuits. The 7 spacesuits were special because they could be removed in-flight.

Tom
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posted 12-31-2011 11:03 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tom   Click Here to Email Tom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great photo, Ed!

Pretty amazing how close 6 and 7 got, especially with no intention to dock on this mission. How close did the the two spacecraft actually get?

moorouge
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posted 12-31-2011 11:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for moorouge   Click Here to Email moorouge     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Close - wasn't it about eighteen inches at their closest?

ilbasso
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From: Greensboro, NC USA
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posted 12-31-2011 02:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
In terms of habitable volume, the Gemini astronauts were much more cramped than Mercury. The Mercury capsule had habitable volume of 1.7 cubic meters. Gemini had 2.55 cubic meters, about 50% more than Mercury, with twice the crew! Apollo's Command Module was a comparably roomy 5.9 cubic meters, still pretty darned cramped, but at least enough for the astronauts to be able to move around.

Lovell said that on Gemini 7, he could either straighten his legs or straighten his back, but not both at the same time. Even in weightless, this was uncomfortable.

I look at those interior shots and wonder how an astronaut in the MOL program would have been able to turn around and go through a hatch at the rear of the cabin. Just doesn't seem possible!

GoesTo11
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From: Denver, CO USA
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posted 01-07-2012 05:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GoesTo11   Click Here to Email GoesTo11     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by ilbasso:
I look at those interior shots and wonder how an astronaut in the MOL program would have been able to turn around and go through a hatch at the rear of the cabin. Just doesn't seem possible!

I've wondered the same thing. I've peered into Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo spacecraft, and walked through a B-17 bomber and a WWII-era submarine, all at 5'9" and around 165 lbs in shorts and a t-shirt and wondered "How do they move around in there, let alone with all that gear on?"

(I'd have had another issue entirely with the hatch cut through the Gemini heat shield... but hey, that's why they picked test pilots, right? )

LM-12
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posted 01-08-2012 10:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for LM-12     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hard to believe Borman and Lovell were in orbit onboard that Gemini 7 spacecraft longer than the flight of Apollo 17. Over a day longer, in fact.

schnappsicle
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From: Houston, TX, USA
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posted 01-19-2012 06:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for schnappsicle   Click Here to Email schnappsicle     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
There was no need for light meters in space. They only used 2 different exposures; one for the outside, and one for in cabin shots. It looks to me like Lovell is holding a movie camera. It's definitely not a still camera.

schnappsicle
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From: Houston, TX, USA
Registered: Jan 2012

posted 01-19-2012 06:16 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for schnappsicle   Click Here to Email schnappsicle     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What amazes me most about this photo is just how much light bounces off the earth. The bottom of Gemini 7 looks just as well lit as the sun side.

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