Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum

Collections

PRESERVATION/CONSERVATION

Move to the Udvar-Hazy Center Continues

  • The Conservation Unit moved their entire operations from the Paul E. Garber Preservation, Restoration, and Storage Facility into the new Emil Buehler Conservation Laboratory. Funds from the Emil Buehler Perpetual Trust were used to furnish the entire laboratory and to acquire essential analytical tools and equipment. 
  • The Preservation and Restoration Shop also relocated from the Garber Facility to the Udvar-Hazy Center's Mary Baker Engen Restoration Hangar. Artifacts moved in 2012 and now on view by visitors from the overlook include the Lippisch DM-1, the Curtiss SB2C-5 Helldiver, and the Sikorsky JRS-1.
  • The Museum continued moving objects from Garber to the new storage facility. Over 4,200 artifacts were relocated in 2012, including the pressure garment collection; fur and leather collection; and the wool collection (still in progress).

Other Activities

  • A major undertaking in April 2012 was the de-installation of Space Shuttle Enterprise, followed immediately by the installation of Space Shuttle Discovery in the James S. McDonnell Space Hangar at the Udvar-Hazy Center.
  • Alan Shepard's Mercury Freedom 7 capsule was de-installed from the US Naval Academy, where it was on loan, and relocated to the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston, Mass. for another temporary loan arrangement.  
  • The Collections Department completed two Collections Care and Preservation Fund (CCPF) grant projects totaling $580,700 that documented over 6,000 artifacts. The Collections Department also received two CCPF awards totaling $394,000 to complete conservation surveys and treatments on small- and medium-sized artifacts in the collection.
  • Major re-housing, cataloging, creating condition reports, and some conservation took place on the historically significant aeronautical collection of early flight experimenter Samuel P. Langley.

Photo: Freedom 7 is lifted above Dorchester Harbor, Boston during its installation at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library on August 29, 2012. Alan Shepard's space capsule is on loan to the JFK Library from the National Air and Space Museum. Photo credit: Kennedy Library Foundation/Rick Friedman