The same rendezvous technique can be used for spacecraft “landing” on natural objects with a weak gravitational field, e. Vostok lacked maneuvering thrusters to adjust its orbit to match that of its twin. The initial separation distances were in the range of 5 to 6. Line-Of-Armstrong tools catalog pdf Guidance Techniques For Manned Orbital Rendezvous.
Simply pointing the active vehicle’s nose at the target and thrusting was unsuccessful. If the target is ahead in the orbit and the tracking vehicle increases speed, its altitude also increases, actually moving it away from the target. André Meyer later remarked, “There is a good explanation for what went wrong with rendezvous. The spacecraft were not equipped to dock with each other, but maintained station-keeping for more than 20 minutes.
This is when we started doing our work. From there on, it’s stationkeeping. Gemini 6 was to have been the first docking mission, but had to be cancelled when that mission’s Agena vehicle was destroyed during launch. A gold-coloured solar array, bent and twisted out of shape and with several holes.