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OSO-IV Cosmic X-Ray Experiment


Display Status:

This object is on display in the Boeing Aviation Hangar room at Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA.

OSO-IV Cosmic X-Ray Experiment

Collection Item Summary:

Prototype unit for an array of cosmic x-ray detectors that flew in the spinning wheel section of the OSO-IV satellite launched in 1967. It was designed to map out non-solar radiation sources as it swept across the sky. The instrument included two photoelectric X-ray detectors based on sodium iodide scintillation crystals as well as one electron and one cosmic-ray detector The experiment was designed and built at American Science and Engineering (AS&E) under the direction of Riccardo Giacconi. This experiment was donated to NASM by AS&E in 2003.

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

Credit Line

Gift of American Science & Engineering Incorporated.


  • Mixed metals, electronics
  • Glass
  • Electronics


3-D: 33 x 35.6 x 20.3cm (13 x 14 x 8 in.)

Country of Origin

United States of America



Inventory Number


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