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Rocket Body, Solid Fuel, Ryusei, Japanese Festival

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Display Status:

This object is on display in the Rockets and Missiles exhibition at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA.

Collection Item Summary:

This is a Japanese Ryusei rocket launched in 1998 at Yoshida, Chichibu, Saitama Prefecture, Japan, of the type used in the annual Ryusei festival. Ryusei means "ascending dragon."

The Ryusei festival is a religious event in which the rockets are fired to pray to the Shinto gods for a good coming harvest of rice and other crops. The rockets are propelled by gunpowder and have long bamboo guidesticks. They are launched from high scaffold-like launch towers. The history of the custom is not well known but is claimed to go back several centuries. This object was donated to the Smithsonian by the Ryusei Preservation Association of Yoshida-machi, Saitama Prefecture, Japan.

Collection Item Long Description:

Data Source

National Air and Space Museum

Rights

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

Manufacturer

Ryusei Preservation Association of Yoshida-machi, Saitaima Prefecture

Credit Line

Gift of Ryusei Preservation Association of Yoshida-machi

Materials

Body, pine wood, 0.5 inch thick; clay inserts down 4.5 inches in bottom exhaust hole. Overall rocket tube bound along most of length of body with hemp rope.

Dimensions

Overall: 2ft 3in. x 7in. (68.58 x 17.78cm)

See more items in

National Air and Space Museum Collection

Country of Origin

Japan

Date

1998

Type

CRAFT-Missiles & Rockets

Inventory Number

A19990313000

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