Name of the American program that took the first men to extra-atmospheric space at the beginning of the 1960s, in the attempt, later crowned by success, to mitigate the advantage of the Soviets in human space flight and pave the way towards conquest of the moon.
The spacecraft was shaped like a 3 m cone trunk. high, a diameter at the base of 2 m. and a weight of 1,360 kg. Its interior could only go a man located in a special anatomical seat.
The Mercury, was equipped with small jets for the correction of the trajectory in orbit, but it did not have motors to pass from one orbit to another. A system of retrocohetes assured the reduction of the orbital speed for the entrance again in the atmosphere, and a special thermal shield placed in its base protected it of the great temperatures caused by the friction. The fall occurred in the middle of the ocean and the capsule remained floating thanks to an inflatable mattress.
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