Satellite, Explorer S-46, Payload Model


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:

This is a payload model for the Explorer S-46 satellite, based upon a fully instrumented developmental model in the collection provided by the University of Iowa. The satellite would have carried instrumentation designed to study the electron and proton fluxes in the Earth's Van Allen Radiation belts over an extended period of time. After launch from Cape Canaveral on March 23, 1960, the upper stage of the Juno 2 vehicle did not ignite, and so the payload never achieved orbit. It was transferred to the Smithsonian Institution by NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in May 1974.

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 the National Aeronautics and Space Administration


Mixed metals, solar cells


Overall: 1ft 1in. x 1ft 1in. x 2ft 2in., 35lb. (33.02 x 33.02 x 66.04cm, 15.9kg)

Country of Origin

United States of America



Inventory Number