Country of Origin: United States of America
Overall: 2ft 7in. x 5ft 10 1/2in. x 11in., 600lb. (78.74 x 179.07 x 27.94cm)
Overall, mainly 4130 stainless steel; thrust members (vertical pipes on top of nozzle leading to thrust structure), 6061-T6 aluminum; propellant rings, copper-brazed; injector filter, 100-mesh stainless steel; injectors, stainless steel; injector gaskets, copper; helical fins, copper; inner shell of motor, nickel phosphide coated; hydrogen peroxide decomposer, stainless steel chamber; motor coolant passage surfaces and exterior of motor body, cadmium plated but later development motors, possibly this motor included, replaced the cadmium coating with nickel phosphide.
This is the General Electric X-405 rocket engine for the first stage of the Vanguard launch vehicle. Vanguard was the first U.S. rocket specifically designed to launch a satellite. The X-405 produced 27,000 pounds of thrust. The thrust chamber was gimballed to provide thrust vector control.
Oon 17 March 1958, a Vanguard rocket successfully placed Vanguard 1 into orbit, America's second satellite after Explorer 1 that was successfully launched with a modified Restone rocket on 31 January 1958. Vanguard 2 was placed into orbit on 17 February 1959 and Vanguard 3 was launched 18 September 1959. This engine was donated to the Smithsonian in 1976 by the Wright-Malta Corp.
Transferred from Wright-Malta Corporation