National Aeronautics and Space Administration

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

Acronyms Science

According to AbbreviationFinder, NASA stands for National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Mercury Program

First manned space program of the United States, from 1961 to 1963 at the launch pads of Cape Canaveral. The Mercury capsules used two types of rocket launchers (or boosters, in English). The first suborbital flights were launched by Redstone rockets designed by Wernher von Braun’s team in Huntsville, Alabama. For orbital flights, the capsules were launched with the Atlas-D, rockets modified from a ballistic missile.

The first Americans to be chosen for space flight were selected from a larger pool of 110 military pilots chosen for their experience in test flights and because they had the necessary physical characteristics. In 1957 7 astronauts were selected for the Mercury missions.

The human team of the mercury program, the “original 7”:

  • Alan Barlett Shephard Jr.
  • Virgil Ivan Grissom
  • Leroy Gordon Cooper
  • Walter Marty Schirra Jr.
  • Deke Slayton (section of the project due to a heart condition)
  • John Herschel Glenn Jr.
  • Scott carpenter

For the safety of the capsule, the engineers had tested it the first time with a rhesus monkey known as Ham the Chimpanzee, and later they went on to do another test but this time with an electronic breathing mannequin, which allowed the scientists to determine the stability of the internal environment of the ship.

Mercury Program Missions:

  • Mercury Redstone 1
  • Mercury Redstone 1A
  • Mercury redstone 2
  • Mercury Redstone BD
  • Mercury redstone 3
  • Mercury redstone 4
  • Mercury atlas 6
  • Mercury atlas 7
  • Mercury atlas 8
  • Mercury atlas 9

Gemini program

It began in 1965 after its first spaceflight program: the pioneering Project Mercury, which had successfully put the first Americans into space. Unlike its predecessor and its subsequent continuation with the Apollo Program, it did not produce as much euphoria in the public opinion despite the fact that the developments achieved in this project would be of vital importance for the development of future Apollo missions and the goal of carrying a man to the moon.

Its main purpose of this program was to demonstrate the space rendezvous and docking possibilities that would be used during the Apollo missions when the lunar module separated from the command module in orbit around the Moon, and would subsequently rejoin the spacecraft again after astronauts to leave the lunar surface.

Another objective of the Gemini missions was to extend the astronauts’ stay in space for up to two weeks. This is even more than the Apollo missions required. During the Gemini missions, space flights became routine with 10 takeoffs from launch pads located at Cape Canaveral, Florida in less than 20 months.

The Gemini ship was an improved version of the Mercury and had originally been called the Mercury Mark II. The improvements were in both size and control capabilities. The Gemini weighed more than 3,628.72 kilograms, twice that of the Mercury. But on the other hand, despite having an increase in cabin space of 50%, it had to be occupied by two astronauts instead of one as in the Mercury missions.

Another difference of the Gemini ships is that they had ejection seats in replacement of the Mercury rescue tower, they also had more storage space for long-duration missions, which required fuel cells instead of batteries for the generation of electrical energy.

The importance of the Gemini missions was that they gave American astronauts the opportunity to learn about how to work and sleep in space in uncomfortable conditions. It was also during these missions when the NASA astronauts began to make the first spacewalks, the second of those carried out, after the Vosjod 2 mission carried out by Alexei Leonov, by an American astronaut the one carried out by Ed White during the mission. of the Gemini IV.

Towards the end of the Gemini missions, docking and rendezvous operations were routine and by then it had been confirmed that astronauts’ lives in space could be carried out without major inconvenience.

Another contribution of the Gemini program was the number of scientific experiments carried out in space on the conditions of the space environment and the photogeography of the Earth. The last Gemini XII mission was launched on November of November of 1966 and finished 15 of the same month with astronauts Jim Lovell, Jr. and Edwin E. Aldrin Buzz. In total, nearly 1,000 hours of space flight were completed.

Gemini program missions:

  • Gemini 1
  • Gemini 2
  • Gemini 3
  • Gemini 4
  • Gemini 5
  • Gemini 7
  • Gemini 6A
  • Gemini 8
  • Gemini 9A
  • Gemini 10
  • Gemini 11
  • Gemini 12

The following astronauts flew all 10 manned Gemini missions.

  • Leroy Gordon Cooper, Jr.
  • Virgil Ivan “Gus” Grissom
  • Walter Marty Schirra, Jr.
  • Neil Alden Armstrong
  • Frank Frederick Borman II
  • Charles “Pete” Conrad, Jr.
  • James Arthur Lovell, Jr.
  • James Alton McDivitt
  • Thomas Patten Stafford
  • Edward Higgins White II
  • John watts young
  • Edwin Eugene “Buzz” Aldrin
  • Eugene Andrew Cernan
  • Michael collins
  • Richard Francis Gordon, Jr.
  • David randolph scott

Apollo Program

It began in July 1960, continuation of the Mercury missions, which would have as its objective the manned overflight of our satellite to locate an appropriate area with a view to an eventual moon landing by astronauts; Thus the old dream of the trip to the moon by the human being would be fulfilled.

In 1961 with the announcement of President John F. Kennedy to send and deposit a man on the Moon, and bring him back safely before the end of the decade. The goal was reached 17 months before the deadline when the 20 of July of 1969 Neil Armstrong and Edwin Buzz Aldrin aboard Apollo 11 landed on the moon in the Sea of Tranquility.

From this project, six missions managed to land on the lunar surface (Apollo 11, 12, 14, 15, 16 and 17) with a single failure: the Apollo 13 mission could not achieve its goal due to the explosion of the module’s liquid oxygen tank. on duty, but the crew returned safely. In 1973, once the lunar program was completed, three Apollo spacecraft were used to send crews to the Skylab space station (missions SL-2, SL-3 and SL-4) and in 1975 the last Apollo spacecraft was launched, for the mission. Apollo-Soyuz.

Apollo Program Missions:

  • AS 201
  • AS 202
  • AS 203
  • Apollo 1 (AS-204)
  • Apollo 4 (AS-501)
  • Apollo 5 (AS-501)
  • Apollo 6 (AS-501)
  • Apollo 7
  • Apollo 8
  • Apollo 9
  • Apollo 10
  • Apollo 11
  • Apollo 12
  • Apollo 13
  • Apollo 14
  • Apollo 15
  • Apollo 16
  • Apollo 17
  • Apollo-SL 2 Skylab
  • Apollo-SL 3 Skylab
  • Apollo-SL 4 Skylab
  • Apollo 18 (ASTP Apollo or Apollo 18-Soyuz 19)

Space Shuttle Program

The development of the shuttle became official on January 5, 1972, when it was announced that NASA would begin creating a low-cost, reusable shuttle system. Due to budget limits, the project was already doomed to last longer than originally anticipated. However, the work started quickly, and a couple of years later there were already several test vehicles.

Space shuttles can carry 30,000 kilograms of cargo up to a height of 480 kilometers, enough to put the cargo into orbit. Some satellites and all space exploration probes have their own propulsion system to take them to higher orbits, or to put them on trajectories that take them to other planets. The shuttles also served to maintain satellites, resupply space stations, and recover equipment. But they weren’t just vehicles. Like Columbia on its last voyage, the orbiter also served as a laboratory for research and scientific demonstrations.

Ferries that have been built:

  • Test prototype, not suitable for space missions
    • The Shuttle Enterprise
    • The Pathfinder Shuttle (life-size steel model)
  • Destroyed in accidents
    • The Space Shuttle Challenger
    • The Space Shuttle Columbia
  • Who were in service until their retirement
    • The Space Shuttle Discovery
    • The Space Shuttle Atlantis
    • The Space Shuttle Endeavor

Unmanned programs

  • Mariner 2 in 1962: First spacecraft to make a close flyby of another planet, in this case Venus.
  • Ranger, Surveyor and Lunar Orbiter programs were essential in order to assess lunar conditions before attempting the manned flight of the Apollo program.
  • Viking probes that landed on the surface of Mars sent the first images of the planet’s surface to Earth.
  • Pioneer 10, Pioneer 11, Voyager 1 and Voyager 2, missions that visited Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune and sent out stunning color images of all of them and most of their satellites.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration