Ariel 1 Satellite

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    Ariel 1 Satellite

    Black cylinder with white stripes and hemispherical sections at each end. One is surmounted by a finial column and the other has four stalks with flat panels protruding from it and eight other stalks of varying width and length. Resembles a sea urchin.

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This object is on display in the Space Science at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA.

Space Science

This is a replica of Ariel-1 satellite, the world's first internationally conceived and executed satellite. The flight model was designed and built by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) and carried six British experiments designed to study the ionosphere and its relationship to solar radiation, including cosmic ray, solar emission and ionospheric experiments. This first in a series of five satellites was launched on a Thor Delta rocket on April 26, 1962. Ariel-1 provided data from launch until September 1962 and sporadically after that until it was turned off in November 1964. The artifact was rebuilt from original parts by technicians at GSFC and transferred from NASA in 1975.