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Science, Evolution, and Creationism, by the National Academies, focuses on teaching evolution in today's classrooms. Check out the other publications in our online store.

Gordon Cooper

Leroy Gordon Cooper was an American astronaut who was born on March 6, 1927, in Oklahoma. Before he became an astronaut, Cooper was an Air Force pilot.

Cooper became an astronaut in 1959. He was one of the original Mercury astronauts. He has spent over 224 hours in space on 2 spaceflights.

Cooper piloted the last Mercury mission in 1963. He set an endurance record on this mission by logging more time in space than all five previous Mercury astronauts combined (34 hours). He was also the first American astronaut to actually sleep in space!

In 1965, Cooper commanded Gemini 5. This mission was set to prove that astronauts could survive in space for 8 days. This was the length of time it took to reach the moon. Gemini 5 was the first spacecraft to carry fuel cells. Fuel cells are generators of electricity that allow spacecrafts to be powered for several days.

Cooper left NASA in 1970. He has since started his own company and worked for the Walt Disney Corporation. He is currently the president of Galaxy Group.



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Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation and NASA, our Founding Partners (the American Geophysical Union and American Geosciences Institute) as well as through Institutional, Contributing, and Affiliate Partners, individual memberships and generous donors. Thank you for your support! NASA AGU AGI NSF