The Gemini 8 flight marked the first dual launch and docking of two orbiting spacecraft. The unmanned Gemini 8 Target Vehicle was launched 41 minutes earlier. The planned mission of 44 orbits was curtailed by a short circuit in the Orbital Attitude Maneuvering System which depleted the spacecraft’s fuel supply through one of its thrusters. Unexpected yaw and roll motion caused the astronauts to undock and use their re-entry control system to stabilize the spacecraft. Gemini 8 reentered the atmosphere on the seventh orbit and splashed down in a stipulated emergency area in the Western Pacific. The planned EVA of one orbit was not achieved.
Launch Date: March 16, 1966, 11:41 AM EST Launch Vehicle: Titan II Crew: Command Pilot: Neil A. Armstrong Pilot: David P. Scott