Published to mark the 50th anniversary of the first mission of the Gemini programme in 1965 Explanations of the spacecraft's systems - Titan II rocket launch vehicle, guidance an navigation, environmental control, reaction control and propulsion, re-entry and Earth landing, communications and electrical power. Techniques and accomplishments of the programme - controlled rendezvous and docking, use of a docked rocket to achieve extreme altitude, spacewalking, controlled re-entry, long-duration flight, mission control. The many 'firsts' accomplished during Gemini missions - first US two-man spacecraft, first US spacewalk, first manoeuvre in a manned spacecraft, first in-flight computer, first in-flight radar, first rendezvous, first docking, first controlled re-entry, first fuel cells for electrical power, firsts optical navigation in space. A wealth of artwork, photography and illustrations from the NASA archives.
W. David Woods has studied the American space programme for 20 years and curates the Apollo Flight Journal website, hosted by NASA. He wrote How Apollo Flew to the Moon, an acclaimed book on the techniques and technologies of the Apollo programme. He co-authored the Haynes Lunar Rover Manual. David M. Harland has written extensively about space and astronautics with two dozen books to his name. These include the highly regarded Exploring the Moon: The Apollo Expeditions and Apollo 11: The First Men on the Moon. He also authored How NASA Learned to Fly in Space: An Exciting Account of the Gemini Missions.