NASA selects seven men to become the first astronauts. They're all test pilots, prepared to risk their lives. No one has ever survived a vertical launch on top of a rocket, but it's the only way they know to put an astronaut into earth orbit. The Mercury astronauts and engineers need to figure out how to launch a man into space on top of a converted intercontinental ballistic missile.
FRIENDS AND RIVALS
For Project Gemini, a new generation of astronauts arrive at NASA -- their mission, to test all the procedures required to land men on the moon and bring them safely back to earth. Each Gemini mission launches two men into space, leading to some of NASA's greatest moments -- Ed White's spacewalk, the first orbital rendezvous of Gemini 6 and 7.