It is said in Wikipedia, that
On the first orbit, McDivitt attempted to rendezvous with the spent Titan second stage. This was unsuccessful for a number of reasons:
NASA engineers had not yet worked out the idiosyncrasies of orbital mechanics involved in rendezvous, which are counter-intuitive. Simply thrusting the spacecraft toward the target changed its orbital altitude and velocity relative to the target. When McDivitt tried this, he found himself moving away and downward, as the retrograde thrust lowered his orbit, increasing his speed.
I don't understand this.
Is there any explanation, given in local reference frame? Referring "orbital altitude" referrers global reference frame and is OK. But any set can be possibly regarded in any reference frame. Local reference frame should be inertial with tidal, Coriolis and other forces.
How to describe the situation with this?
I need explanation WITHOUT notion of "orbit".
Suppose we are inside giant closed spacecraft like Rama or O'Neill cylinder. This spacecraft is on Earth orbit, but we are inside and don't know this. We feel weightlessness. Now, If Rama is rotating, we can feel some non-inertial effects like centrifugal or Coriolis forces.
But suppose Rama is not rotating.
Then, the only strange thing we will feel is Earth tidal force. The tidal force mean that all objects will periodically distracted along axis, directed to (invisible) Earth.
So, you want to say, that McDivitt failed due to tidal forces?
Hard to believe.
The possibility to regard the task from within any reference frame I like -- is the basic physical principle. You won't convince me it is wrong in the case of orbital movement.