Gemini 4 pp 206-220 | Cite as

Something else up here

  • David J. Shayler
Part of the Springer Praxis Books book series (PRAXIS)


As with each flight before and since, Gemini 4 was all about achieving its mission objectives not breaking records, although such records were – and still remain – a supplementary achievement and a headliner for the media. By the end of their second flight day in orbit, Jim McDivitt and Ed White became holders of two world space ‘firsts’ and had set three U.S. space records. A few minutes after surpassing Cooper’s record at 21:41 EDT, the two astronauts together logged more time (68 hours 51 minutes) than all the eight previous U.S. astronauts combined. About six hours earlier, the Gemini 4 astronauts had also surpassed the duration record (26 hours/17 orbits) for a multi-crew spacecraft, set by the Voskhod 2 crew of Pavel Belyayev and Alexei Leonov less than three months earlier. It was also reported that White became “the first man to use a self-propulsion unit to maneuver in space away from his capsule,” during his EVA on June 3. [1] That same day, Gemini 4 achieved an altitude of 183 miles (294.4 km), surpassing the record attained by Wally Schirra on Mercury 8 in October 1962 by seven miles (11.2 km); and there were still three days of flight remaining before splashdown.


  1. 1.
    Gemini Sets 2 World, 3 U.S. Space Records, California Desert Sun, June 5, 1965, #261.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Voices from an Old Warrior: Why KC-123 Safety Matters, Christopher J.B. Hoctor, 2013, Galleon’s Lap, e-book pdf last accessed April 11, 2018.
  3. 3.
    Astronautics and Aeronautics, 1965, p 271, entry for June 6.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    The Gemini UFO: A Skeptical Analysis, James Oberg, UFO Report Magazine, Fall 1981.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • David J. Shayler
    • 1
  1. 1.Astronautical HistorianAstro Info Service Ltd.HalesowenUK

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