On Thursday, the European ATV Johannes Kepler will dock with the International Space Station. Rendezvous and docking in space has been taking place for 45 years, and happened first when Gemini 8 hooked up with the Agena Target Vehicle in 1966. Most of us take for granted how two spacecraft rendezvous while in orbit, but it is a complicated procedure involving orbital mechanics, coordination between the two spacecraft, and strict timelines. Here’s a 90-second whirlwind tour of the history of docking in space – past, present and future from ESA. If you want to read more about the history rendezvous and docking, ESA’s ATV blog has a detailed look. Below is a video that describes how the ATV docks at the ISS.
(…) Read the rest of Video: 45 Years of Rendezvous and Docking in Space (2 words)
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(C) nancy for Universe Today, 2011. | Permalink | 3 comments | Add to del.icio.us Post
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