45 Years of Rendezvous and Docking in Space

Article written: 23 Feb , 2011
Updated: 19 Jan , 2016
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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.

Source: ESA

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4 Responses

  1. Member
    muffie1801 says

    Here in the U.K. first video comes up with message “This video has been removed by the user”.

  2. Member

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