Encyclopedia Astronautica
Conrad



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Conrad
Credit: www.spacefacts.de - www.spacefacts.de
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Gemini 5
Astronaut Charles Conrad inside the Gemini 5 spacecraft after launch
Credit: NASA
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Gemini 5
Astronauts Cooper and Conrad in Gemini spacecraft just after insertion
Credit: NASA
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Gemini 5
Astronaut Conrad tweaks Astronaut Cooper's beard for the cameramen
Credit: NASA
Conrad, Charles Peter Jr 'Pete' (1930-1999) American test pilot astronaut. Flew on Gemini 5, Gemini 11, Apollo 12, Skylab 2. Third person on the moon. Only astronaut to fly Gemini, Apollo, and Skylab. Commander of first successful space station mission.

US Naval aviator prior to astronaut selection. Died in a motorcycle crash. Total EVA Time: 0.54 days. Number of EVAs: 5.


Official NASA Biography (Amended 1999 July 9)

NAME: Charles Conrad, Jr., Captain, USN (Ret.)

BIRTHPLACE AND DATE: Born June 2, 1930, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Conrad is 5 feet 6 1/2 inches tall and weighs 145 pounds.

EDUCATION: Attended primary and secondary schools at Haverford School in Haverford, Pennsylvania, and the Darrow School, New Lebanon, New York; received a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering from Princeton University in 1953; an Honorary Master of Arts degree from Princeton in 1966; an Honorary Doctorate of Laws degree from Lincoln- Weslyan University in 1970, and an Honorary Doctorate of Science degree from Kings College, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania in 1971.

MARITAL STATUS: Married to the former Jane DuBose of Uvalde, Texas, and has four sons: Peter, December 25, 1954; Thomas, May 3, 1957; Andrew, April 30, 1959; and Christopher, November 26, 1960.

OTHER ACTIVITIES: His hobbies include golf, water skiing and automobile racing.

ORGANIZATIONS: Fellow, American Astronautical Society; New York Academy of Science; American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and a Fellow of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots.

SPECIAL HONORS: Awarded Congressional Space Medal of Honor (October 1978); awarded two NASA Distinguished Service Medals, two NASA Exceptional Service Medals, the Navy Astronaut Wings, two Navy Distinguished Service Medals, and two Distinguished Flying Crosses; recipient of Princeton's Distinguished Alumnus Award for 1965; the U.S. Jaycee's 10 Outstanding Young Men Award in 1965; American Astronautical Society Flight Achievement Award for 1966; Pennsylvania's Award for Excellence in Science and Technology in 1967 and 1969; the Rear Admiral William S. Parsons Award for Scientific and Technical Progress in 1970; Godfrey L. Cabot Award in 1970; Silver Medal of the Union Leagp5Pof Philadelphia in 1970; the FAI Yur Gagarin Gold Space Medal and the De La Vaulx Medal in 1970 for Apollo 12; National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Special Trustees Award in 1970; Federal Aviation Agency's Space Mechanic Technician Award in 1973; the Collier Trophy in 1973; FAI Gold Medal and the De La Vaulx Medal in 1974 for Skylab I, and the AIAA Haley Astronautics Award in 1974 for Skylab I; the Harmon Trophy in 1974; enshrined in the Aviation Hall of Fame in 1980.

EXPERIENCE: Conrad entered the Navy following graduation from Princeton University and became a naval aviator. He attended the Navy Test Pilot School at Patuxent River, Maryland and, upon completing that course of instruction, was assigned as a project test pilot in the armaments test division there. He also served at Patuxent as a flight instructor and performance engineer at the Test Pilot School. He has logged more than 6,500 hours flying time, with more than 5,000 hours in jet aircraft.

Conrad was selected as an astronaut by NASA in September 1962. In August 1965, he served as pilot on the 8-day Gemini V flight. He and command pilot Gordon Cooper were launched into earth orbit on August 21, and proceeded to establish a space endurance record of l90 hours and 56 minutes. The flight, which lasted 120 revolutions and covered a total distance of 3,312,993 statute miles, was terminated on August 29, 1965. It was also on this flight that the United States took over the lead in manhours in space.

On September 18, 1966, Conrad occupied the command pilot seat for the 3-day Gemini XI mission. He executed orbital maneuvers to rendezvous and dock in less than one orbit with a previously launched Agena and piloted Gemini XI through two periods of extravehicular activity performed by pilot Richard Gordon. Other highlights of the flight included the established new world space altitude record of 850 statute miles and the completion of the first fully automatic controlled re-entry.

Conrad was spacecraft commander of Apollo 12, November 14- 24, 1969. With him on man's second lunar landing mission were Richard Gordon, command module pilot, and Alan Bean, lunar module pilot. In accomplishing all of the mission's objectives, the Apollo 12 crew executed the first precision lunar landing, bringing their lunar module, "Intrepid," to a safe touchdown in the moon's Ocean of Storms. Along with Bean, Conrad spent 7 hours and 45 minutes on the lunar surface performing the first lunar traverse deploying the Apollo Lunar Surface Experiment Package (ALSEP), installing a nuclear power generator station which would provide the power source for long-term scientific experiments, gathering geologic samples of the lunar surface for return to Earth, and completing a close-up inspection of the Surveyor III spacecraft.

As spacecraft commander on his fourth flight, Conrad flew the first manned Skylab mission which launched on May 25 and terminated on June 22, 1973. With him for the initial activation and 28-day flight qualification operation of Skylab Orbital Workshop were Joseph Kerwin, science-pilot, and Paul Weitz, pilot. Although subjected to a 10-day delay in their planned launch, Conrad, Kerwin and Weitz managed to complete 46 of 55 scheduled experiments and all of the nine programmed subsystem/operation detailed test objectives. Paramount to the completion of these objectives was deployment of a "parasol" thermal shade to alleviate the orbital workshop thermal problem created by loss of the micrometeoroid shield during the launch of the Skylab workshop. Also vital to the mission was a 3-hour and 23- minute extravehicular activity by Conrad and Kerwin to deploy the jammed solar wing. Their success in extending the only remaining solar array system wing assured sufficient power for the conduct of the full 28-day mission and would provide the needed energy to power the subsequent Skylab 2 and Skylab 3 manned missions. In logging 672 hours and 49 minutes each aboard the workshop, the crew established a new world record for a single mission, and Conrad captured the individual endurance record for time in space by bringing this total space flight time to 1,179 hours and 38 minutes. Conrad has also logged 14 hours and 19 minutes in extra-vehicular activities.

In December 1973, after serving for 20 years (11 of which were as an astronaut in the space program), Conrad retired from the U. S. Navy to accept a position as Vice President, Operations and Chief Operating Officer of American Television and Communications Corporation (ATC) located in Denver, Colorado. Conrad was also a member of the Board of Directors of ATC. As Vice President, Operations, he was responsible for both the operation of existing systems and the development of new cable television systems throughout the country.

March 1, 1976, became a Vice President, Commercial Sales International, McDonnell Douglas Corporation, St. Louis, Missouri.

In October 1978, was promoted to Vice President, Marketing, of the Douglas Aircraft Company.

In October 1980, Conrad was promoted to Senior Vice President, Marketing, of the Douglas Aircraft Company.

September 1969 to March 1971, Consultant, Butler Aviation, Inc., Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey.

March 1970 to March 1971, Director, Butler Aviation, Inc., Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. (Resigned due to Skylab training schedule.)

July 1970 to Present, Director, Hamilton Funds, Inc.; Hamilton Growth Fund, Inc. and Hamilton Income Fund, Inc., Denver, Colorado.

May 1970 to December 1973, Director, Galeria Bank, Houston, Texas. (Resigned due to relocation to Denver.)

December 1973 to 1976, Member/Consultant, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Space Systems Committee, Washington, D.C.

September 1974 to February 1976, Consultant, Martin Marietta Corporation, Large Space Telescope Program, Denver, Colorado.

January 1978 to Present, Consultant, Raytheon Marine Company, Sorensen Company, Manchester, New Hampshire.

February 1981, Advisory Director, Martin Aviation, Santa Ana, California.

As of 1999, Staff Vice President for International Business Development, McDonnell Douglas Corporation, St. Louis, Missouri.

In 1995, he formed his own company, Universal Space Lines, and several sister companies with the goal of commercialising space. His objective was to go back to space as an entrepreneur, creating inexpensive methods of satellite launch and management.

Birth Place: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Status: Deceased.


Born: 1930.06.02.
Died: 1999.07.09.
Spaceflights: 4 .
Total time in space: 49.15 days.

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
See also
  • Astronaut Category of persons, applied to those trained for spaceflight outside of Russia and China. More...

Associated Flights
  • Gemini 5 Crew: Conrad, Cooper. First American flight to seize duration record from Soviet Union. Mission plan curtailed due to fuel cell problems; mission incredibly boring, spacecraft just drifting to conserve fuel most of the time. Splashed down 145 km from aim point. Backup crew: Armstrong, See. More...
  • Gemini 8 Crew: Armstrong, Scott. First docking of two spacecraft. After docking with Agena target, a stuck thruster aboard Gemini resulted in the crew nearly blacking out before the resulting spin could be stopped. An emergency landing in the mid-Pacific Ocean followed. Backup crew: Conrad, Gordon. More...
  • Gemini 11 Crew: Conrad, Gordon. Speed (8,003 m/s) and altitude (1,372 km) records. First docking with another spacecraft on first orbit after launch. First test of tethered spacecraft. Backup crew: Anders, Armstrong. More...
  • Apollo 503 Crew: Borman, Collins, Anders. Cancelled Apollo E mission - test of the Apollo lunar module in high earth orbit. Lunar module was not ready. Instead mission flown only with CSM into lunar orbit only as Apollo 8. Backup crew: Conrad, Williams Clifton, Gordon. More...
  • Apollo 9 Crew: McDivitt, Schweickart, Scott. First manned test of the Lunar Module. First test of the Apollo space suits. First manned flight of a spacecraft incapable of returning to earth. If rendezvous of the Lunar Module with the Apollo CSM had failed, crew would have been stranded in orbit. Backup crew: Bean, Conrad, Gordon. More...
  • Apollo 12 Crew: Bean, Conrad, Gordon. Second manned lunar landing. Precision landing near Surveyor 3 that landed in 1967. Lightning struck the booster twice during ascent. Decision was made to press on to moon, despite possibility landing pyrotechnics damaged. Backup crew: Irwin, Scott, Worden. More...
  • Skylab 2 Crew: Conrad, Kerwin, Weitz. Record flight duration. Crew had to conduct major repairs to get damaged station in operation. Astronaut flung into space during release of solar wing. High temperatures in station brought down by deployment of sunshade. Backup crew: McCandless, Musgrave, Schweickart. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • USN American agency overseeing development of rockets, spacecraft, and rocket engines. USN Joint Task Force 7, USA. More...

Associated Programs
  • Apollo The successful US project to land a man on the moon. More...
  • Gemini Gemini was conceived as an 'upgraded Mercury' to test essential orbital manoeuvring, rendezvous, docking, lifting re-entry, and space walking techniques in the four years between the last Mercury flight and the first scheduled Apollo flight. If fulfilled this mission, and numerous variants that never reached production would have serviced manned space stations and taken Americans around and to the moon - at lower cost and earlier than Apollo. More...
  • Skylab First and only US space station to date. Project began life as Apollo Orbital Workshop - outfitting of an S-IVB stage with docking adapter with equipment launched by several subsequent S-1B launches. Curtailment of the Apollo moon landings meant that surplus Saturn V's were available, so the pre-equipped, five times heavier, and much more capable Skylab resulted. More...

Bibliography
  • NASA Astronaut Biographies, Johnson Space Center, NASA, 1995-present. Web Address when accessed: here.

Conrad Chronology


1962 April 18 - .
  • NASA announced that applications would be accepted for additional astronauts until June 1, 1962. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Armstrong; Borman; Conrad; Lovell; McDivitt; See; Stafford; White; Young. Spacecraft: Gemini. NASA planned to select five to ten astronauts to augment the seven-member Mercury astronaut team. The new pilots would participate in support operations in Project Mercury and would join the Mercury astronauts in piloting the two-man Gemini spacecraft. To be chosen, the applicant must (1) be an experienced jet test pilot and preferably be presently engaged in flying high-performance aircraft; (2) have attained experimental flight test status through military service, aircraft industry, or NASA, or must have graduated from a military test pilot school; (3) have earned a degree in the physical or biological sciences or in engineering; (4) be a United States citizen under 35 years of age at the time of selection, six feet or less in height; and (5) be recommended by his parent organization. Pilots meeting these qualifications would be interviewed in July and given written examinations on their engineering and scientific knowledge. Selected applicants would then be thoroughly examined by a group of medical specialists. The training program for the new astronauts would include work with design and development engineers, simulator flying, centrifuge training, additional scientific training, and flights in high-performance aircraft.

1962 September 11 - .
  • NASA Astronaut Training Group 2 selected. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Borman; Conrad; Lovell; McDivitt; See; Stafford; White; Young. The group was selected to provide pilots for the Gemini program and early Apollo missions.. Qualifications: Test pilot status (either military, NASA, or aircraft industry), qualified jet pilot with minimum 1,000 flight-hours, under 35 years old, under 183 cm height, excellent health. US citizen.. 253 applicants survived initial NASA screening of their records. Following physical and psychiatric tests, nine were selected. Eight made it to space (See was killed in a T-38 crash before his first spaceflight). This was generally considered the highest quality group of astronauts ever selected. They would command the missions during the glory days of the American space program - Gemini, Apollo, and Skylab. Young was the only astronaut to fly Gemini, Apollo, and the Shuttle program. Armstrong was the only one to fly the X-15, Gemini, and Apollo. Conrad was the only one to fly Gemini, Apollo, and Skylab.

1962 September 17 - .
  • Nine new astronauts named - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Armstrong; Borman; Conrad; Lovell; McDivitt; See; Stafford; White; Young. Program: Gemini. Spacecraft: Gemini. NASA's nine new astronauts were named in Houston, Tex., by Robert R. Gilruth, MSC Director. Chosen from 253 applicants, the former test pilots who would join the original seven Mercury astronauts in training for Projects Gemini and Apollo were: Neil A. Armstrong, NASA civilian test pilot; Maj. Frank Borman, Air Force; Lt. Charles Conrad, Jr., Navy; Lt.Cdr. James A, Lovell, Jr., Navy; Capt. James A. McDivitt, Air Force; Elliot M. See, Jr., civilian test pilot for the General Electric Company; Capt. Thomas P. Stafford, Air Force; Capt. Edward H. White II, Air Force; and Lt. Cdr. John W. Young, Navy.

1963 January 26 - .
  • New assignments for the seven original astronauts - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Cooper; Grissom; Slayton; Carpenter; Shepard; Schirra; Glenn; Armstrong; Borman; Conrad; Lovell; McDivitt; See; Stafford; White; Young. Program: Apollo. Spacecraft: Gemini. MSC announced new assignments for the seven original astronauts: L. Gordon Cooper, Jr., and Alan B. Shepard, Jr., would be responsible for the remaining pilot phases of Project Mercury; Virgil I. Grissom would specialize in Project Gemini; John H. Glenn, Jr., would concentrate on Project Apollo; M. Scott Carpenter would cover lunar excursion training; and Walter M. Schirra, Jr., would be responsible for Gemini and Apollo operations and training. As Coordinator for Astronaut Activities, Donald K. Slayton would maintain overall supervision of astronaut duties.

    Specialty areas for the second generation were: trainers and simulators, Neil A. Armstrong; boosters, Frank Borman; cockpit layout and systems integration, Charles Conrad, Jr.; recovery system, James A. Lovell, Jr.; guidance and navigation, James A. McDivitt; electrical, sequential, and mission planning, Elliot M. See, Jr.; communications, instrumentation, and range integration, Thomas P. Stafford; flight control systems, Edward H. White II; and environmental control systems, personal equipment, and survival equipment, John W. Young.


1963 January 26 - .
  • Manned Spacecraft Center announced specialty areas for the nine new astronauts. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Armstrong; Borman; Conrad; Lovell; McDivitt; See; Stafford; White; Young. Spacecraft: Gemini; Gemini ECS. Manned Spacecraft Center announced specialty areas for the nine new astronauts: trainers and simulators, Neil A. Armstrong; boosters, Frank Borman; cockpit layout and systems integration, Charles Conrad, Jr.; recovery systems, James A. Lovell, Jr.; guidance and navigation, James A. McDivitt; electrical, Sequential, and mission planning, Elliot M. See, Jr.; communications, instrumentation, and range integration, Thomas P. Stafford; flight control systems, Edward H White II; and environmental control systems, personal and survival equipment, John W Young.

1963 May 6 - .
  • Apollo LEM manual control simulated - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Carpenter; Schirra; Armstrong; McDivitt; See; White; Conrad; Young. Program: Apollo. Spacecraft: Apollo LM; CSM Guidance; LM Simulator. Astronauts M. Scott Carpenter, Walter M. Schirra, Jr., Neil A. Armstrong, James A. McDivitt, Elliot M. See, Jr., Edward H. White II, Charles Conrad, Jr., and John W. Young participated in a study in LTV's Manned Space Flight Simulator at Dallas, Tex. Under an MSC contract, LTV was studying the astronauts' ability to control the LEM manually and to rendezvous with the CM if the primary guidance system failed during descent.

1965 August 21 - . 14:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC19. LV Family: Titan. Launch Vehicle: Titan II GLV. LV Configuration: Titan II GLV GT-5 / 62-12560.
  • Gemini 5 - . Call Sign: Gemini 5. Crew: Conrad; Cooper. Backup Crew: Armstrong; See. Payload: Gemini SC5/Rendezvous Evaluation Pod. Mass: 3,605 kg (7,947 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad; Cooper; Armstrong; See. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: Gemini. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Gemini 5. Spacecraft: Gemini; Gemini Radar; Gemini REP. Duration: 7.96 days. Decay Date: 1965-08-29 . USAF Sat Cat: 1516 . COSPAR: 1965-068A. Apogee: 395 km (245 mi). Perigee: 304 km (188 mi). Inclination: 32.6000 deg. Period: 91.50 min. Major objectives of the eight-day mission were evaluating the performance of the rendezvous guidance and navigation system, using a rendezvous evaluation pod (REP), and evaluating the effects of prolonged exposure to the space environment on the flight crew. Secondary objectives included demonstrating controlled reentry guidance, evaluating fuel cell performance, demonstrating all phases of guidance and control system operation needed for a rendezvous mission, evaluating the capability of either pilot to maneuver the spacecraft in orbit to rendezvous, evaluating the performance of rendezvous radar, and executing 17 experiments. The mission proceeded without incident through the first two orbits and the ejection of the REP. About 36 minutes after beginning evaluation of the rendezvous guidance and navigation system, the crew noted that the pressure in the oxygen supply tank of the fuel cell system was falling. Pressure dropped from 850 pounds per square inch absolute (psia) at 26 minutes into the flight until it stabilized at 70 psia at 4 hours 22 minutes, and gradually increased through the remainder of the mission. The spacecraft was powered down and the REP exercise was abandoned. By the seventh revolution, experts on the ground had analyzed the problem and a powering-up procedure was started. During the remainder of the mission the flight plan was continuously scheduled in real time. Four rendezvous radar tests were conducted during the mission, the first in revolution 14 on the second day; the spacecraft rendezvous radar successfully tracked a transponder on the ground at Cape Kennedy. During the third day, a simulated Agena rendezvous was conducted at full electrical load. The simulation comprised four maneuvers - apogee adjust, phase adjust, plane change, and coelliptical maneuver - using the orbit attitude and maneuver system (OAMS). Main activities through the fourth day of the mission concerned operations and experiments. During the fifth day, OAMS operation became sluggish and thruster No. 7 inoperative. Thruster No. 8 went out the next day, and the rest of the system was gradually becoming more erratic. Limited experimental and operational activities continued through the remainder of the mission. Retrofire was initiated in the 121st revolution during the eighth day of the mission, one revolution early because of threatening weather in the planned recovery area. Reentry and landing were satisfactory, but the landing point was 145 km short, the result of incorrect navigation coordinates transmitted to the spacecraft computer from the ground network. Landing occurred August 29, 190 hours 55 minutes after the mission had begun. The astronauts arrived on board the prime recovery ship, the aircraft carrier Lake Champlain, at 9:25. The spacecraft was recovered at 11:51 a.m.

    With this flight, the US finally took the manned spaceflight endurance record from Russia, while demonstrating that the crew could survive in zero gravity for the length of time required for a lunar mission. However the mission was incredibly boring, the spacecraft just drifting to conserve fuel most of the time, and was 'just about the hardest thing I've ever done' according to a hyperactive Pete Conrad. An accident with freeze dried shrimp resulted in the cabin being filled with little pink subsatellites.


1965 August 29 - .
  • Landing of Gemini 5 - . Return Crew: Conrad; Cooper. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad; Cooper. Program: Gemini. Flight: Gemini 5. The crew had to use the re-entry thrusters to orient the spacecraft due to OAMS system failures. The retrofire and re-entry were conducted in darkness by the spacecraft computer. However the computer had been misprogrammed with an erroneous rotation rate of the earth (390 degrees per day instead of 360.98 degrees per day). Cooper's efforts compensated for what he recognized as an erroneous reading and brought the capsule down closer to the ship than they would otherwise have been.

1966 March 16 - . 16:41 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC19. LV Family: Titan. Launch Vehicle: Titan II GLV. LV Configuration: Titan II GLV GT-8 / 62-12563.
  • Gemini 8 - . Call Sign: Gemini 8. Crew: Armstrong; Scott. Backup Crew: Conrad; Gordon. Payload: Gemini SC8. Mass: 3,788 kg (8,351 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Armstrong; Scott; Conrad; Gordon. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: Gemini. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Gemini 8. Spacecraft: Gemini. Duration: 0.45 days. Decay Date: 1966-03-17 . USAF Sat Cat: 2105 . COSPAR: 1966-020A. Apogee: 264 km (164 mi). Perigee: 160 km (90 mi). Inclination: 28.9000 deg. Period: 88.80 min. The Atlas-Agena target vehicle for the Gemini VIII mission was successfully launched from KSC Launch Complex 14 at 10 a.m. EST March 16. The Gemini VIII spacecraft followed from Launch Complex 19 at 11:41 a.m., with command pilot Neil A. Armstrong and pilot David R. Scott aboard. The spacecraft and its target vehicle rendezvoused and docked, with docking confirmed 6 hours 33 minutes after the spacecraft was launched. This first successful docking with an Agena target vehicle was followed by a major space emergency. About 27 minutes later the spacecraft-Agena combination encountered unexpected roll and yaw motion. A stuck thruster on Gemini put the docked assembly into a wild high speed gyration. Near structural limits and blackout, Armstrong undocked, figuring the problem was in the Agena, which only made it worse. The problem arose again and when the yaw and roll rates became too high the crew shut the main Gemini reaction control system down and activated and used both rings of the reentry control system to reduce the spacecraft rates to zero. This used 75% of that system's fuel. Although the crew wanted to press on with the mission and Scott's planned space walk, ground control ordered an emergency splashdown in the western Pacific during the seventh revolution. The spacecraft landed at 10:23 p.m. EST March 16 and Armstrong and Scott were picked up by the destroyer U.S.S. Mason at 1:37 a.m. EST March 17. Although the flight was cut short by the incident, one of the primary objectives - rendezvous and docking (the first rendezvous of two spacecraft in orbital flight) - was accomplished.

    Primary objectives of the scheduled three-day mission were to rendezvous and dock with the Gemini Agena target vehicle (GATV) and to conduct extravehicular activities. Secondary objectives included rendezvous and docking during the fourth revolution, performing docked maneuvers using the GATV primary propulsion system, executing 10 experiments, conducting docking practice, performing a rerendezvous, evaluating the auxiliary tape memory unit, demonstrating controlled reentry, and parking the GATV in a 220-nautical mile circular orbit. The GATV was inserted into a nominal 161-nautical mile circular orbit, the spacecraft into a nominal 86 by 147-nautical mile elliptical orbit. During the six hours following insertion, the spacecraft completed nine maneuvers to rendezvous with the GATV. Rendezvous phase ended at 5 hours 58 minutes ground elapsed time, with the spacecraft 150 feet from the GATV and no relative motion between the two vehicles. Stationkeeping maneuvers preceded docking, which was accomplished at 6 hours 33 minutes ground elapsed time. A major problem developed 27 minutes after docking, when a spacecraft orbit attitude and maneuver system (OAMS) thruster malfunctioned. The crew undocked from the GATV and managed to bring the spacecraft under control by deactivating the OAMS and using the reentry control system (RCS) to reduce the spacecraft's rapid rotation. Premature use of the RCS, however, required the mission to be terminated early. The retrofire sequence was initiated in the seventh revolution, followed by nominal reentry and landing in a secondary recovery area in the western Pacific Ocean. The spacecraft touched down less than 10 km from the planned landing point. The recovery ship, the destroyer Leonard Mason, picked up both crew and spacecraft some three hours later. Early termination of the mission precluded achieving all mission objectives, but one primary objective - rendezvous and docking - was accomplished. Several secondary objectives were also achieved: rendezvous and docking during the fourth revolution, evaluating the auxiliary tape memory unit, demonstrating controlled reentry, and parking the GATV. Two experiments were partially performed.


1966 September 12 - . 14:42 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC19. LV Family: Titan. Launch Vehicle: Titan II GLV. LV Configuration: Titan II GLV GT-11 / 62-12566.
  • Gemini 11 - . Call Sign: Gemini 11. Crew: Conrad; Gordon. Backup Crew: Anders; Armstrong. Payload: Gemini SC11. Mass: 3,798 kg (8,373 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad; Gordon; Anders; Armstrong. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: Gemini. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spacecraft. Flight: Gemini 11. Spacecraft: Gemini. Duration: 2.97 days. Decay Date: 1966-09-15 . USAF Sat Cat: 2415 . COSPAR: 1966-081A. Apogee: 280 km (170 mi). Perigee: 161 km (100 mi). Inclination: 28.8000 deg. Period: 88.80 min. More highjinks with Conrad. First orbit docking with Agena, followed by boost up to record 800 km orbit, providing first manned views of earth as sphere. Tether attached by Gordon to Agena in spacewalk and after a lot of effort tethered spacecraft put into slow rotation, creating first artificial microgravity.

    The primary objective of the Gemini XI mission was to rendezvous with the Gemini Agena target vehicle (GATV) during the first revolution and dock. Five maneuvers completed the spacecraft/GATV rendezvous at 1 hour 25 minutes ground elapsed time, and the two vehicles docked nine minutes later. Secondary objectives included docking practice, extravehicular activity (EVA), 11 experiments, docked maneuvers, a tethered vehicle test, demonstrating automatic reentry, and parking the GATV. All objectives were achieved except one experiment - evaluation of the minimum reaction power tool - which was not performed because umbilical EVA was terminated prematurely. Umbilical EVA began at 24 hours 2 minutes ground elapsed time and ended 33 minutes later. Gordon became fatigued while attaching the tether from the GATV to the spacecraft docking bar. An hour later the hatch was opened to jettison equipment no longer required. At 40 hours 30 minutes after liftoff, the GATV primary propulsion system (PPS) was fired to raise the apogee of the docked vehicles to 741 nautical miles for two revolutions. The PPS was fired again, 3 hours 23 minutes later, to reduce apogee to 164 nautical miles. The crew then prepared for standup EVA, which began at 47 hours 7 minutes into the flight and lasted 2 hours 8 minutes. The spacecraft was then undocked to begin the tether evaluation. At 50 hours 13 minutes ground elapsed time, the crew initiated rotation. Initial oscillations damped out and the combination became very stable after about 20 minutes; the rotational rate was then increased. Again, initial oscillations gradually damped out and the combination stabilized. At about 53 hours into the mission, the crew released the tether, separated from the GATV, and maneuvered the spacecraft to an identical orbit with the target vehicle. A fuel cell stack failed at 54 hours 31 minutes, but the remaining five stacks shared the load and operated satisfactorily. A rerendezvous was accomplished at 66 hours 40 minutes ground elapsed time, and the crew then prepared for reentry.


1966 September 15 - .
  • Landing of Gemini 11 - . Return Crew: Conrad; Gordon. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad; Gordon. Program: Gemini. Flight: Gemini 11. The spacecraft landed at 13:59 GMT less than 5 km from the planned landing point at 71 hours 17 minutes after liftoff. The crew was retrieved by helicopter, and the spacecraft was brought aboard the prime recovery ship, the aircraft carrier Guam, about an hour after landing.

1967 December - .
1967 December 7 - .
  • Astronaut Conrad concerned about an attitude control problem in the Apollo LM - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Slayton; Conrad. Program: Apollo. Spacecraft: Apollo LM; LM Weight. Astronaut Charles (Pete) Conrad's concern about an anticipated attitude control problem in the LM was reported. Conrad had said, "The LM is too sporty when in a light weight configuration." Minimum impulse was expected to produce about 0.3 degree per second rate, which was estimated to be about four times too fast. A memo on the problem possibility was written by Howard W. Tindall, Jr., Deputy Chief of MSC's Mission Planning and Analysis Division, to stimulate thinking. On December 9, ASPO Manager George M. Low asked Donald K. Slayton and Warren J. North if there was any chance of setting up a simulation to see whether this was a real concern.

1968 November 22 - .
  • Problem with the Apollo LM fuel -remaining light - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad. Program: Apollo. Spacecraft: Apollo LM; LM Descent Propulsion. Howard W. Tindall, Jr., Chief of Apollo Data Priority Coordination within ASPO, reported an operational system problem aboard the LM. To give a returning Apollo crew an indication of time remaining to perform a landing maneuver or to abort, a light on the LM instrument panel would come on when about two minutes worth of propellants remained in the descent propellant system tanks with the descent engine running at 25-percent thrust. The present LM weight and descent trajectory were such that the light would always come on before touchdown. The only hitch, said Tindall, was that the signal was connected to the spacecraft master alarm. "Just at the most critical time in the most critical operation of a perfectly nominal lunar landing mission, the master alarm with all its lights, bells, and whistles will go off." Tindall related that some four or five years earlier, astronaut Pete Conrad had called the arrangement "completely unacceptable . . . but he was probably just an Ensign at the time and apparently no one paid any attention." If this "is not fixed," Tindall said, "I predict the first words uttered by the first astronaut to land on the moon will be 'Gee whiz, that master alarm certainly startled me.'" Tindall recommended either rerouting the signal wiring to bypass the alarm or cutting the signal wire and relying solely on the propellant gauges to assess flight time remaining.

1969 March 3 - . 16:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39A. LV Family: Saturn V. Launch Vehicle: Saturn V. LV Configuration: Saturn V SA-504.
  • Apollo 9 - . Call Sign: Gumdrop. Crew: McDivitt; Schweickart; Scott. Backup Crew: Bean; Conrad; Gordon. Payload: Apollo CSM 104 / Apollo LM 3 / Saturn S-IVB-504N. Mass: 36,511 kg (80,492 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: McDivitt; Schweickart; Scott; Bean; Conrad; Gordon. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: Apollo. Class: Moon. Type: Manned lunar spacecraft. Flight: Apollo 9. Spacecraft: Apollo CSM. Duration: 10.04 days. Decay Date: 1969-03-13 . USAF Sat Cat: 3769 . COSPAR: 1969-018A. Apogee: 187 km (116 mi). Perigee: 185 km (114 mi). Inclination: 32.6000 deg. Period: 88.60 min. Apollo 9 (AS-504), the first manned flight with the lunar module (LM-3), was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, on a Saturn V launch vehicle at 11:00 a.m. EST March 3. Originally scheduled for a February 28 liftoff, the launch had been delayed to allow crew members James A. McDivitt, David R. Scott, and Russell L. Schweickart to recover from a mild virus respiratory illness. Following a normal launch phase, the S-IVB stage inserted the spacecraft into an orbit of 192.3 by 189.3 kilometers. After post-insertion checkout, CSM 104 separated from the S-IVB, was transposed, and docked with the LM. At 3:08 p.m. EST, the docked spacecraft were separated from the S-IVB, which was then placed on an earth-escape trajectory. On March 4 the crew tracked landmarks, conducted pitch and roll yaw maneuvers, and increased the apogee by service propulsion system burns.

    On March 5 McDivitt and Schweickart entered the LM through the docking tunnel, evaluated the LM systems, transmitted the first of two series of telecasts, and fired the LM descent propulsion system. They then returned to the CM.

    McDivitt and Schweickart reentered the LM on March 6. After transmitting a second telecast, Schweickart performed a 37-minute extravehicular activity (EVA), walking between the LM and CSM hatches, maneuvering on handrails, taking photographs, and describing rain squalls over KSC.

    On March 7, with McDivitt and Schweickart once more in the LM, Scott separated the CSM from the LM and fired the reaction control system thrusters to obtain a distance of 5.5 kilometers between the two spacecraft. McDivitt and Schweickart then performed a lunar-module active rendezvous. The LM successfully docked with the CSM after being up to 183.5 kilometers away from it during the six-and-one-half-hour separation. After McDivitt and Schweickart returned to the CSM, the LM ascent stage was jettisoned.

    During the remainder of the mission, the crew tracked Pegasus III, NASA's meteoroid detection satellite that had been launched July 30, 1965; took multispectral photos of the earth; exercised the spacecraft systems; and prepared for reentry.


1969 November 14 - . 16:22 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39A. LV Family: Saturn V. Launch Vehicle: Saturn V. LV Configuration: Saturn V SA-507.
  • Apollo 12 - . Call Sign: Yankee Clipper. Crew: Bean; Conrad; Gordon. Backup Crew: Irwin; Scott; Worden. Payload: Apollo CSM 108 / Apollo LM 6 / ALSEP / S-IVB-507. Mass: 28,790 kg (63,470 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Bean; Conrad; Gordon; Irwin; Scott; Worden. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: Apollo. Class: Moon. Type: Manned lunar spacecraft. Flight: Apollo 12. Spacecraft: Apollo CSM. Duration: 10.19 days. Decay Date: 1969-11-24 . USAF Sat Cat: 4225 . COSPAR: 1969-099A. Apogee: 186 km (115 mi). Perigee: 181 km (112 mi). Inclination: 32.5000 deg. Period: 88.19 min. Apollo 12 (AS-507)-with astronauts Charles Conrad, Jr., Richard F. Gordon, Jr., and Alan L. Bean as the crewmen-was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, at 11:22 a.m. EST November 14. Lightning struck the space vehicle twice, at 36.5 seconds and 52 seconds into the mission. The first strike was visible to spectators at the launch site. No damage was done. Except for special attention given to verifying all spacecraft systems because of the lightning strikes, the activities during earth-orbit checkout, translunar injection, and translunar coast were similar to those of Apollo 10 and Apollo 11.

    During the translunar coast astronauts Conrad and Bean transferred to the LM one-half hour earlier than planned in order to obtain full TV coverage through the Goldstone tracking station. The 56-minute TV transmission showed excellent color pictures of the CSM, the intravehicular transfer, the LM interior, the earth, and the moon.

    At 10:47 p.m. EST, November 17, the spacecraft entered a lunar orbit of 312.6 x 115.9 kilometers. A second service propulsion system burn circularized the orbit with a 122.5-kilometer apolune and a 100.6-kilometer perilune. Conrad and Bean again transferred to the LM, where they perfomed housekeeping chores, a voice and telemetry test, and an oxygen purge system check. They then returned to the CM.

    Conrad and Bean reentered the LM, checked out all systems, and at 10:17 p.m. EST on November 18 fired the reaction control system thrusters to separate the CSM 108 (the Yankee Clipper) from the LM-6 (the Intrepid). At 1:55 a.m. EST November 19, the Intrepid landed on the moon's Ocean of Storms, about 163 meters from the Surveyor III spacecraft that had landed April 19, 1967. Conrad, shorter than Neil Armstrong (first man on the moon, July 20), had a little difficulty negotiating the last step from the LM ladder to the lunar surface. When he touched the surface at 6:44 a.m. EST November 19, he exclaimed, "Whoopee! Man, that may have been a small step for Neil, but that's a long one for me."

    Bean joined Conrad on the surface at 7:14 a.m. They collected a 1.9-kilogram contingency sample of lunar material and later a 14.8-kilogram selected sample. They also deployed an S-band antenna, solar wind composition experiment, and the American flag. An Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments Package with a SNAP-27 atomic generator was deployed about 182 meters from the LM. After 3 hours 56 minutes on the lunar surface, the two astronauts entered the Intrepid to rest and check plans for the next EVA.

    The astronauts again left the LM at 10:55 p.m. EST November 19. During the second EVA, Conrad and Bean retrieved the lunar module TV camera for return to earth for a failure analysis, obtained photographic panoramas, core and trench samples, a lunar environment sample, and assorted rock, dirt, bedrock, and molten samples. The crew then examined and retrieved parts of Surveyor III, including the TV camera and soil scoop. After 3 hours 49 minutes on the lunar surface during the second EVA, the two crewmen entered the LM at 2:44 a.m. EST November 20. Meanwhile astronaut Gordon, orbiting the moon in the Yankee Clipper, had completed a lunar multispectral photography experiment and photographed proposed future landing sites.

    At 9:26 a.m. EST November 20, after 31 hours 31 minutes on the moon, Intrepid successfully lifted off with 34.4 kilograms of lunar samples. Rendezvous maneuvers went as planned. The LM docked with the CSM at 12:58 p.m. November 20. The last 24 minutes of the rendezvous sequence was televised. After the crew transferred with the samples, equipment, and film to the Yankee Clipper, the Intrepid was jettisoned and intentionally crashed onto the lunar surface at 5:17 p.m. November 20, 72.2 kilometers southeast of Surveyor III. The crash produced reverberations that lasted about 30 minutes and were detected by the seismometer left on the moon.

    At 3:49 p.m. EST November 21, the crew fired the service propulsion system engine, injecting the CSM into a transearth trajectory after 89 hours 2 minutes in lunar orbit. During the transearth coast, views of the receding moon and the interior of the spacecraft were televised, and a question and answer session with scientists and the press was conducted.


1969 November 19 - . 11:32 GMT - .
  • EVA Apollo 12-1 - . Crew: Conrad; Bean. EVA Type: Extra-Vehicular Activity. EVA Duration: 0.16 days. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad; Bean. Program: Apollo. Class: Moon. Type: Manned lunar lander. Flight: Apollo 12. Spacecraft: Apollo LM. Summary: Explored lunar surface near LM and deployed ALSEP unmanned scientific station equipment..

1969 November 20 - .
  • EVA Apollo 12-3 - . Crew: Conrad; Bean. EVA Type: Internal Vehicular Activity. EVA Duration: 0.0014 days. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad; Bean. Program: Apollo. Class: Moon. Type: Manned lunar lander. Flight: Apollo 12. Spacecraft: Apollo LM. Summary: Threw excess equipment out of LM before lift-off..

1969 November 20 - . 03:54 GMT - .
  • EVA Apollo 12-2 - . Crew: Conrad; Bean. EVA Type: Extra-Vehicular Activity. EVA Duration: 0.16 days. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad; Bean. Program: Apollo. Class: Moon. Type: Manned lunar lander. Flight: Apollo 12. Spacecraft: Surveyor. Summary: Moonwalk to Surveyor 3, which had landed two years before. Recovered parts of Surveyor 3 which seemed to show that Earth bacteria could survive for that period in space and be revived..

1969 November 24 - .
  • Landing of Apollo 12 - . Return Crew: Bean; Conrad; Gordon. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Bean; Conrad; Gordon. Program: Apollo. Flight: Apollo 12. Parachute deployment and other reentry events occurred as planned. The CM splashed down in mid-Pacific at 3:58 p.m. EST (20:58 GMT), 7.25 kilometers from the recovery ship, U.S.S. Hornet. The astronauts, wearing flight suits and biological face masks, were airlifted by helicopter from the CM to the recovery ship, where they entered the mobile quarantine facility. They would remain in this facility until arrival at the Lunar Receiving Laboratory, MSC. The Apollo 12 mission objectives were achieved and the experiments successfully accomplished.

1972 January 19 - .
  • A Skylab crew news conference; preparations on schedule for April 1973 launch. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad. Program: Skylab. Spacecraft: Skylab. A Skylab crew news conference, with prime and backup crewmen, was held at MSC. Astronaut Charles Conrad, Jr., said preparations were on schedule for an April 1973 launch. Contractor checkouts and tests of hardware were expected to be completed for delivery to KSC in July. Skylab would carry some 20 000 pieces of stowed equipment on board to provide life support for nine men for 140 days. 'So it all goes up at one time, and we've got a great deal of work to do, not only to learn how to operate this vehicle but also all the experiments in it. It became apparent that we could not be 100-percent cross-trained as we had been in Apollo, so we've . . . defined some areas for each guy to become expert in. That allowed us to balance out the training hours. Additional Details: here....

1973 May 25 - . 13:00 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39B. LV Family: Saturn I. Launch Vehicle: Saturn IB. LV Configuration: Saturn IB SA-206.
  • Skylab 2 - . Call Sign: Skylab. Crew: Conrad; Kerwin; Weitz. Backup Crew: McCandless; Musgrave; Schweickart. Payload: Apollo CSM 116. Mass: 19,979 kg (44,046 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad; Kerwin; Weitz; McCandless; Musgrave; Schweickart. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: Skylab. Class: Moon. Type: Manned lunar spacecraft. Flight: Skylab 2. Spacecraft: Apollo CSM. Duration: 28.03 days. Decay Date: 1973-06-22 . USAF Sat Cat: 6655 . COSPAR: 1973-032A. Apogee: 440 km (270 mi). Perigee: 425 km (264 mi). Inclination: 50.0000 deg. Period: 93.20 min. Epic repair mission which brought Skylab into working order. Included such great moments as Conrad being flung through space by the whiplash after heaving on the solar wing just as the debris constraining it gave way; deployment of a lightweight solar shield, developed in Houston in one week, which brought the temperatures down to tolerable levels. With this flight US again took manned spaceflight duration record.

    Skylab 2 , consisting of a modified Apollo CSM payload and a Saturn IB launch vehicle, was inserted into Earth orbit approximately 10 minutes after liftoff. The orbit achieved was 357 by 156 km and, during a six-hour period following insertion, four maneuvers placed the CSM into a 424 by 415 km orbit for rendezvous with the Orbital Workshop. Normal rendezvous sequencing led to stationkeeping during the fifth revolution followed by a flyaround inspection of the damage to the OWS. The crew provided a verbal description of the damage in conjunction with 15 minutes of television coverage. The solar array system wing (beam) 2 was completely missing. The solar array system wing (beam) 1 was slightly deployed and was restrained by a fragment of the meteoroid shield. Large sections of the meteoroid shield were missing. Following the flyaround inspection, the CSM soft-docked with the OWS at 5:56 p.m. EDT to plan the next activities. At 6:45 p.m. EDT the CSM undocked and extravehicular activity was initiated to deploy the beam 1 solar array. The attempt failed. Frustration of the crew was compounded when eight attempts were required to achieve hard docking with the OWS. The hard dock was made at 11:50 p.m. EDT, terminating a Skylab 2 first-day crew work period of 22 hours.


1973 June 7 - . 15:15 GMT - .
  • EVA Skylab 2-2 - . Crew: Conrad; Kerwin. EVA Type: Extra-Vehicular Activity. EVA Duration: 0.15 days. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad; Kerwin. Program: Skylab. Class: Manned. Type: Manned space station. Flight: Skylab 2. Spacecraft: Skylab. Summary: Succeeded in release of jammed solar panel..

1973 June 19 - . 10:55 GMT - .
  • EVA Skylab 2-3 - . Crew: Conrad; Weitz. EVA Type: Extra-Vehicular Activity. EVA Duration: 0.0722 days. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad; Weitz. Program: Skylab. Class: Manned. Type: Manned space station. Flight: Skylab 2. Spacecraft: Skylab. Summary: Replacement of film cartridges for solar camera..

1973 June 22 - .
1999 July 9 - .
  • Astronaut Charles Peter (Pete) Conrad Jr dies at age of 69 -- Motorcycle crash. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Conrad. Summary: American test pilot astronaut. Flew on Gemini 5, Gemini 11, Apollo 12, Skylab 2. Third person on the moon. Only astronaut to fly Gemini, Apollo, and Skylab. Member of first successful space station mission..

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