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Mercury MA-9A
Part of Mercury Family
Mercury
Mercury
Credit: Manufacturer Image
Planned Mercury six-orbit mission. Canceled and NASA moved directly to an 18-orbit mission due to astronaut shortage and change in concept (flights no longer used just to train astronauts).

AKA: Faith 7. Launched: By the end of 1962. Number crew: 1 .

NASA's Mercury orbital operations plan of July 19, 1961 had four spacecraft equipped for three-orbit flights (SC13, SC16, SC18, and SC19) and four for one day/eighteen-orbit flights (SC20, SC15B, SC12B, and SC10). Manned 3-orbit missions would take place every 60 days after Glenn's flight during 1962. The four one-day capsules would be flown in 1963. This would give all seven Mercury astronauts experience in orbital flight prior to Gemini.

Despite delays due to technical problems and weather this plan was followed on the first three orbital flights: Mercury MA-6 (Glenn/SC13), MA-7 (Carpenter/SC16) and MA-8 (Schirra/SC19). However by Schirra's flight he seven-astronaut corps was down to four - Glenn, Carpenter and Slayton were off the flight roster (Glenn on President Kennedy's orders because he was a national icon; Carpenter because he had screwed up; and Slayton on medical grounds). So even thought the flight-ready SC19 had been delivered to Cape Canaveral on March 20, 1962, the decision was taken to cancel the remaining short-duration mission and move directly to an 18-orbit mission. Cooper was the only astronaut not yet to fly and would have been the pilot for the original MA-9.



People: Shepard, Cooper. Spacecraft: Mercury.

By the end of 1962 - . LV Family: Atlas. Launch Vehicle: Atlas D.
  • Mercury MA-9A (cancelled) - . Call Sign: Faith 7. Crew: Cooper. Backup Crew: Shepard. Payload: Mercury SC19. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Cooper, Kennedy, Shepard. Program: Mercury. Flight: Mercury MA-9A. Spacecraft: Mercury.

    NASA’s Mercury orbital operations plan of July 19, 1961 had four spacecraft equipped for three-orbit flights. However by Schirra’s flight the seven-astronaut corps was down to four. So even thought the flight-ready SC19 had been delivered to Cape Canaveral on March 20, 1962, the decision was taken to cancel the remaining short-duration mission and move directly to an 18 orbit mission.



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