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Mercury-Atlas

 

 

MERCURY-ATLAS Fact Sheet
Written and Edited by Cliff Lethbridge

 

Classification: Space Launch Vehicle

Length: 95 feet, 4 inches

Diameter: 10 feet

 

The Mercury-Atlas was essentially an Atlas D missile adapted to carry a NASA Mercury capsule.

The engine thrusts were exactly the same as the operational Atlas D ICBM, with only the flight profile modified to carry the Mercury spacecraft into orbit.

Additional safety features were built into certain Atlas D systems to protect the astronauts.

It was a Mercury-Atlas rocket that successfully boosted the MA-6 Friendship 7 capsule with John Glenn aboard. Glenn became the first U.S. astronaut to orbit Earth.


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