Test continue on a new alloy for re-entry. On one test the ship acts erratically and although the crew is saved the ship is lost. A second mission is launched to try and understand what went wrong.





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Episode cast overview:
Capt. Bob Stark
Maj. Gibbie Gibson
Molly Gibson
Ken Drake ...
Tom McNamara ...
Committee Member


Astronauts Gibson and Stark take an experimental capsule up to test a new heat-resistant alloy. However, Gibson ejects during re-entry when the ship vibrates, invalidating the test. The results are inconclusive and Stark disputes Gibson's decision, insisting the instruments showed everything was okay. Now McCauley must undertake the same mission... and make the same decision. Written by Gislef

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Release Date:

9 December 1959 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


As the ship re-enters the atmosphere, the men are shown tilted back, but the ship faces down, so the men should be facing down as well, unless they're sitting facing aft. See more »


Prof. Emerson: It's a short flight.
Col. Edward McCauley: There are no short flights in space.
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User Reviews

A test flight hits trouble during reentry.
19 February 2008 | by (Washington State, USA) – See all my reviews

A new, more heat resistant reentry shield has been developed, allowing steeper and faster reentry. On the first manned test flight, the ship begins to vibrate severely as it reenters the atmosphere. One of the two-man crew wants to ride it out, his instruments all read normal. But the other crewman ejects their escape capsule. Back on the ground, he takes flack for acting hastily, loosing the ship and data. After some successful unmanned flights, a second manned mission is launched, with Col. McCauley replacing the man who pulled the lever. Again, there is severe vibration on reentry. Again all instruments read normal. McCauley comes very close to pulling the lever, but he holds off, and the vibration eventually stops. Back on the ground, McCauley heads off to tell the man he replaced that if it hadn't been for that first flight, he, too, would have ejected the capsule.

The only new effects for this episode are glowing leading edges on the ship as it begins reentry.

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