Film return capsules of this type were used to retrieve photographs taken of intelligence targets on Earth from the formerly secret Corona program's photoreconnaissance satellites. Made by General Electric, Corona film "buckets" returned more than 800,000 images taken by the KH-series cameras between August 1960 and May 1972, when the program ended. The capsules separated from the spacecraft in orbit, reentered the atmosphere, and after jettisoning a heat shield deployed a parachute that was caught in midair by U.S. Air Force planes. This capsule was transferred to NASM by the National Reconnaissance Office in 1995.
Transferred from the National Reconnaissance Office.