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Liberty Bell 7

Mission Number: MR-421 July 1961

    Virgil Grissom [1]

Backup Crew:
    John Glenn

    Location: Cape Canaveral Air Force Station
    Pad: LC-5
    Date: 21 July 1961
    Time: 12:20:36 UTC

    Mission Duration: 15 minutes, 37 seconds
    Orbits: Suborbital
    Max. Altitude: 118 statute miles

    Date: 21 July 1961
    Time: 12:36:13 UTC

    Location: Atlantic Ocean, 302 miles east of Cape Canaveral (27° 32' N, 75° 44' W)
    Vessel: USS Randolph (CVS-15)

While waiting for rescue, the hatch on the capsule blew. Grissom escaped, but the capsule was lost. Grissom claimed the hatch "just blew", but many believed he had panicked. NASA investigated and exonerated him.

The capsule was recovered in 1999. Although inconclusive, preliminary evidence tends to support Grissom's claim.

Launch vehicle was a Redstone rocket.

This is a very nice photo of the recovered Liberty Bell 7 during its display at the Kennedy Space Center.
(Credit to James Gerard. Used by permission. Check out his Field Guide to American Spacecraft.)

lb7a_sm.jpg (7809 bytes)
(click to enlarge - 43398 bytes)

This is a NASA photo of the attempted recovery of the MR-4 capsule.

mr4_effort.jpg (54291 bytes)
(click to enlarge)

The Liberty Bell 7 capsule is currently on display at the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center, Hutchinson, KS.


Page last modified: 06 September 2015 22:16:48.