Encyclopedia Astronautica
Gemini


The Gusmobile could have conquered space - faster, better cheaper. An endless number of Gemini derivatives would have performed tasks in earth orbit, and flown around and landed on the moon. Could the US have won the moon and space station races at a fraction of the expense? Browse through the many might-have-been Geminis!

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Associated Spacecraft
  • Mercury American manned spacecraft. 18 launches, 1960.01.21 (Mercury LJ-1B) to 1963.05.15 (Mercury MA-9). America's first man-in-space project. The capsule had to be as small as possible to match the orbital payload capability of America's first ICBM, the Atlas. More...
  • Mercury Mark I American manned spacecraft. Study 1959. Proposed derivatives of the basic one-crew Mercury capsule for investigation of earth orbit rendezvous, lifting re-entry and land landing. More...
  • Gemini American manned spacecraft. 12 launches, 1964.04.08 (Gemini 1) to 1966.11.11 (Gemini 12). It was obvious to NASA that there was a big gap of three to four years between the last Mercury flight and the first scheduled Apollo flight. More...
  • Gemini LOR American manned lunar lander. Study 1961. Original Mercury Mark II proposal foresaw a Gemini capsule and a single-crew open cockpit lunar lander undertaking a lunar orbit rendezvous mission, launched by a Titan C-3. More...
  • Gemini Lunar Lander American manned lunar lander. Study 1961. A direct lunar lander design of 1961, capable of being launched to the moon in a single Saturn V launch through use of a 2-man Gemini re-entry vehicle instead of the 3-man Apollo capsule. More...
  • Gemini-Centaur American manned lunar flyby spacecraft. Study 1962. In the first Gemini project plans, it was planned that after a series of test dockings between Gemini and Agena rocket stages, Geminis would dock with Centaur stages for circumlunar flights. More...
  • Gemini Transport American logistics spacecraft. Study 1963. This Gemini Transport version was proposed as a Gemini program follow-on in 1963. With the extended reentry module, this was the ancestor of the Big Gemini spacecraft of the late 1960's. More...
  • Gemini Ferry American manned spacecraft. Study 1963. The Gemini Ferry vehicle would have been launched by Titan 3M for space station replenishment. More...
  • Gemini - Saturn I American manned lunar flyby spacecraft. Study 1964. In the spring of 1964, with manned Apollo flights using the Saturn I having been cancelled, use of a Saturn I to launch a Gemini around the moon was studied. More...
  • Gemini - Saturn V American manned lunar orbiter. In late 1964 McDonnell, in addition to a Saturn 1B-boosted circumlunar Gemini, McDonnell proposed a lunar-orbit version of Gemini to comprehensively scout the Apollo landing zones prior to the first Apollo missions. More...
  • Gemini - Double Transtage American manned lunar orbiter. Study 1965. In June 1965 astronaut Pete Conrad conspired with the Martin and McDonnell corporations to advocate an early circumlunar flight using Gemini. More...
  • Extended Mission Gemini American manned spacecraft. Study 1965. A McDonnell concept for using Gemini for extended duration missions. The basic Gemini would dock with an Agena upper stage. More...
  • Gemini Satellite Inspector American manned spacecraft. Study 1965. A modification of Gemini to demonstrate rendezvous and inspection of noncooperative satellites was proposed. The Gemini would rendezvous with the enormous Pegasus satellite in its 500 x 700 km orbit. More...
  • Gemini Lunar Surface Rescue Spacecraft American manned lunar lander. Study 1966. This version of Gemini would allow a direct manned lunar landing mission to be undertaken in a single Saturn V flight, although it was only proposed as an Apollo rescue vehicle. More...
  • MOL American manned space station. Cancelled 1969. MOL (Manned Orbiting Laboratory) was the US Air Force's manned space project after Dynasoar was cancelled, until it in turn was cancelled in 1969. The earth orbit station used a helium-oxygen atmosphere. More...
  • Gemini Paraglider American manned spacecraft. Study 1966. The paraglider was supposed to be used in the original Gemini program but delays in getting the wing to deploy reliably resulted in it not being flown. More...
  • Gemini Observatory American manned spacecraft. Study 1966. Proposed version of Gemini for low-earth orbit solar or stellar astronomy. This would be launched by a Saturn S-IB. It has an enlarged reentry module which seems to be an ancestor of the 'Big Gemini' of 1967. More...
  • Rescue Gemini American manned rescue spacecraft. Study 1966. A version of Gemini was proposed for rescue of crews stranded in Earth orbit. This version, launched by a Titan 3C, used a transtage for maneuvering. More...
  • Winged Gemini American manned spaceplane. Study 1966. Winged Gemini was the most radical modification of the basic Gemini reentry module ever considered. More...
  • Gemini Lunar Surface Survival Shelter American manned lunar habitat. Study 1967. Prior to an Apollo moon landing attempt, the shelter would be landed, unmanned, near the landing site of a stranded Apollo Lunar Module. More...
  • Gemini LORV American manned lunar orbiter. Study 1967. This version of Gemini was studied as a means of rescuing an Apollo CSM crew stranded in lunar orbit. The Gemini would be launched unmanned on a translunar trajectory by a Saturn V. More...

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