Model, Meteorological Satellite, Seasat 1


Display Status:

This object is not on display at the National Air and Space Museum. It is either on loan or in storage.

Collection Item Summary:

Launched in June 1978, Seasat 1 was the first satellite designed to monitor and study the oceans globally. In addition to acquiring basic data, the satellite helped establish the requirements for an operational oceans monitoring system. Designed to operate for three years, a power malfunction ended the satellite's service after four months.

Seasat 1 carried a wide variety of data sensors, including a radar altimeter, synthetic aperture radar, and several types of radiometers. These instruments gathered information on ice fields, oil spills, ocean current patterns, wave forms, storm formations, rain cells, atmospheric wind speeds, and other meteorological phenomena.

The artifact is a 1/20 scale model of the spacecraft, transferred from Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, to the Museum in 1984.

Collection Item Long Description:

Data Source

National Air and Space Museum

Restrictions & Rights

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


Credit Line

Transferred from Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology


Plastic, aluminum


Overall: 68.58 high x 53.34 wide x 44.45 deep cm (2ft 3in. x 1ft 9in. x 1ft 5 1/2in.)

Country of Origin

United States of America


MODELS-Unmanned Spacecraft & Parts

Inventory Number