Project Gemini Paraglider Lander (1961)
About the Design
When the two-man Gemini spacecraft was being designed, engineers at North American Aviation seriously considered equipping the vehicle with a triangular-shaped paraglider and tri-pod landing skids that would allow it to make a controlled landing on a dry lakebed rather than splashdown in the open seas. In fact, North American experimented with various paraglider concepts between 1961 and 1967. Ironically, it wasn't until NASA cancelled its funding of paraglider research in 1964 that North American finally produced some positive test results. Unfortunately, their successes were too few, and came too late to be integrated into the Gemini Program.
About the Kit
Revell's Mercury/Gemini twin-pack has been released numerous times and in combination with larger Apollo models. The first release allowed one to build either the traditional orbital version of the Gemini spacecraft or this post-re-entry paraglider lander shown here. Subsequent releases removed this option, but due to customer protests, it was restored in the latter re-releases.
This kit is an original 1964 issue.