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Model, Manned Orbiting Laboratory, 1:48


Display Status:

This object is on display in the James S. McDonnell Space Hangar room at Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA.

Collection Item Summary:

This is a 1:48 scale model of the Manned Orbital Laboratory (MOL), designed by the U.S. Air Force to be a space-based reconnaissance platform for long-duration missions. After being launched into Earth orbit onboard a Gemini capsule by a Titan rocket, the crew of two astronauts would enter the attached laboratory module. Missions would last two to four weeks. The Gemini capsule with crew would then detach from the MOL and return to Earth, while the laboratory module would remain in orbit. When it became clear that reconnaissance satellites like Corona could do the same job at less cost and without hazard to humans, Project MOL was cancelled in the late 1960s. McDonnell Douglas made this model and Howard DeVorkin donated it to NASM in 1986.

Collection Item Long Description:

Data Source

National Air and Space Museum


Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum


McDonnell Douglas

Credit Line

Gift of Howard DeVorkin




Overall: 10 in. high x 8 in. long x 3 1/2 in. in diameter at base (25.4 x 20.32 x 8.89cm)

See more items in

National Air and Space Museum Collection

Country of Origin

United States of America


MODELS-Manned Spacecraft & Parts

Inventory Number


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