Omnidirectional Antenna, Ranger Block III
Omnidirectional antennas were a staple of NASA’s early planetary exploration craft. Early Ranger (Blocks I through III), Mariner, and lunar-orbiting spacecraft all featured omnidirectional antenna at their apexes. For Ranger, most of the antenna remained covered, with only the very tip protruding from a conical encasing. Mariner featured longer antennas which for some missions, were encased behind grating or in a conic cover. This antenna was used on a lunar orbiter, which photographed the moon in the late 1960s to select landing sites for a human landing mission. Made mostly from aluminum, the antenna protruded directly from the side of the spacecraft. The lunar orbiters featured two antennae: high-gain with singular directional patterns, and low-gain which was omnidirectional.
Hughes Aircraft, the manufacturer of this antenna, donated it to the Museum in 1973.
Gift of Huges Aircraft Company
- Country of Origin
- United States of America
- Hughes Aircraft Corp.
- EQUIPMENT-Aerials & Antenna
- Aluminum, Paint, Plastic, Paper, Synthetic Fabric, Brass, Gold Plating, Mineral (Glass) Fabric, Phenolic Resin
- Storage (Rehoused on aluminum pallet with three additional objects): 153.7 × 179.1 × 104.1cm, 222.3kg (60 1/2 × 70 1/2 × 41 in., 490lb.)