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Engineering - Mechanical Engineering | Freedom 7 - The Historic Flight of Alan B. Shepard, Jr.

Freedom 7

The Historic Flight of Alan B. Shepard, Jr.

Burgess, Colin

2014, XXVII, 266 p. 190 illus.

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  • Tells the almost forgotten story of the first manned U. S. spaceflight, Freedom 7, flown by Cdr. Alan Shepard, Jr., for NASA and the United States
  • Based on exclusive interviews with Shepard and several of the surviving leading players in the program
  • Examines the Mercury program and Shepard's flight in the context of the space race with the former USSR

Inevitably, there are times in a nation’s history when its hopes, fears and confidence in its own destiny appear to hinge on the fate of a single person. One of these pivotal moments occurred on the early morning of May 5, 1961, when a 37-year-old test pilot squeezed himself into the confines of the tiny Mercury spacecraft that he had named Freedom 7. On that historic day, U.S. Navy Commander Alan Shepard carried with him the hopes, prayers, and anxieties of a nation as his Redstone rocket blasted free of the launch pad at Cape Canaveral, hurling him upwards on a 15-minute suborbital flight that also propelled the United States into the bold new frontier of human space exploration.

This book tells the enthralling story of that pioeering flight as recalled by many of the participants in the Freedom 7 story, including Shepard himself, with anecdotal details and tales never before revealed in print.

Although beaten into space just three weeks earlier by the Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin, Alan Shepard’s history-making mission aboard Freedom 7 nevertheless provided America’s first tentative step into space that would one day see its Apollo astronauts – including Alan Shepard – walk on the Moon.

Content Level » Popular/general

Keywords » Alan Shepard - First American in Space - First Suborbital Flight - Freedom 7 - Mercury Program - Mercury Space Flights - Mercury-Redstone - Pioneers in Early Spaceflight - Spam in a Can

Related subjects » Extraterrestrial Physics, Space Sciences - History of Science - Mechanical Engineering - Popular Astronomy

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