This section shows covers produced for various training missions. These training missions, often involving a dummy or boilerplate capsule, were designed to train ship personnel and access their readiness prior to the actual mission. Ships involved in such missions were not always the ships that finally were involved in the next actual mission. There is little documentation and few covers exist for such missions. Such covers are extremely rare.


Mercury Training Missions
Mission Description
Mercury 6 Patrick AFB Navy Recovery Team Swimmers practicing for Glenn's Flight
Mercury 81 USS Hancock
Mercury 81 USS Intrepid
Mercury 81 USS Yorktown

Gemini Training Missions
Gemini 2 - USS Wallace L. Lind2

Gemini-Apollo Boilerplate Recovery

28 June 1963 - in Galveston Bay5 (a very rare cover)

Apollo Training Missions
Apollo 10 - USS Myles C. Fox4

SpaceX Training Missions
Date Description
7 June 2017 Dragon Recovery Training
5 November 2018 SpaceX Recovery Crew trails
3 January 2019 Recovery Ship Go Searcher with Crew Dragon Test Article sea trail
16 January 2019 Recovery Ship Go Searcher with DM-1 sea trail
1 February 2019 Recovery Ship Go Searcher with Crew Dragon Test Article
27 February 2019 Recovery Ship Go Searcher with Crew Dragon Test Article
19 January 2020 Recovery Ship Go Searcher returns with Crew Dragon capsule
12 May 2020 SpaceX GO Navigator Conducts DM-2 Recovery Training

1) The designated mission is the next scheduled actual mission and is used for reference purposes only.
2) From the collection of Steve Durst.
4) While marked as training for Apollo 10 the mission was actually a training exercse for quarantine procedures for the first Moon landing mission, including the use of the Apollo quarantine trailer. Eventually, this turned out to be Apollo 11 but at the time there was speculation that the first Moon landing would be Apollo 10, hence the cover's caption. The training exercise was in the Atlantic. See .
5) Sold on eBay 2012


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Last modified on 26 April 2021