Encyclopedia Astronautica
1966.01.05 - Atlas 5302 erected at complex 14.


Atlas 5302, target launch vehicle for Gemini VIII, was erected at complex 14. Air Force Space Systems Division and General Dynamics/Convair had begun intensive efforts to ensure the vehicle's flight readiness immediately after the Agena failure on October 25, 1965.

The effort resulted in procedural and design changes intended to improve vehicle reliability. Of the 20 engineering change proposal differences between Atlas 5301 (launched October 25) and Atlas 5302, all but one were proven in other Atlas flights before Atlas 5302 was launched. The exception was a new destruct unit which flew for the first time in Atlas 5302. Booster subsystems tests continued until February 23.

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