Gemini 4

An Astronaut Steps into the Void

  • David J. Shayler

Part of the Springer Praxis Books book series (PRAXIS)

Also part of the Space Exploration book sub series (SPACEE)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxv
  2. David J. Shayler
    Pages 1-23
  3. David J. Shayler
    Pages 24-39
  4. David J. Shayler
    Pages 40-61
  5. David J. Shayler
    Pages 62-90
  6. David J. Shayler
    Pages 91-112
  7. David J. Shayler
    Pages 113-139
  8. David J. Shayler
    Pages 140-180
  9. David J. Shayler
    Pages 181-205
  10. David J. Shayler
    Pages 206-220
  11. David J. Shayler
    Pages 221-237
  12. David J. Shayler
    Pages 238-256
  13. David J. Shayler
    Pages 257-266
  14. David J. Shayler
    Pages 267-293
  15. David J. Shayler
    Pages 294-333
  16. David J. Shayler
    Pages 334-352
  17. Back Matter
    Pages 353-378

About this book


The flight of Gemini 4 in June 1965 was conducted barely four years after the first Americans flew in space. It was a bold step by NASA to accomplish the first American spacewalk and to extend the U.S. flight duration record to four days. This would be double the experience gained from the six Mercury missions combined.

This daring mission was the first to be directed from the new Mission Control at the Manned Spacecraft Center near Houston, Texas. It also revealed that: 

  • Working outside the spacecraft would require further study.
  • Developing the techniques to rendezvous with another object in space would not be as straightforward as NASA had hoped.
  • Living in a small spacecraft for several days was a challenging but necessary step in the quest for even longer flights.

Despite the risks, the gamble that astronauts Jim McDivitt and Ed White undertook paid off. Gemini 4 gave NASA the confidence to attempt an even longer flight the next time. That next mission would simulate the planned eight-day duration of an Apollo lunar voyage. Its story is recounted in the next title in this series: Gemini 5: Eight Days in Space or Bust.


second manned Gemini flight Ten Mercury missions Build up to Mercury launches Gemini as Apollo stepping stone Post-Mercury NASA flights Gemini flights Gemini orbital experiments Gemini 1965

Authors and affiliations

  • David J. Shayler
    • 1
  1. 1.Astronautical HistorianAstro Info Service Ltd.HalesowenUK

Bibliographic information