Collection Item Summary:
This is an unflown beryllium shingle of the type that covered the Reentry Control System (RCS) Section on the Gemini capsule. It has the two holes for the nozzles of the small, liquid propellant engines inside the RCS that were used for controlling attitude and maneuvering. The shingles provided protection against the tremendous heat generated upon the capusle's reentry into the Earth's atmosphere. For added protection, their outer surface was painted with a blue-black ceramic paint and the inner surface had a very thin gold coating. Three firms supplied flat sheets of beryllium, which McDonnell finished in to shingles.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration transferred this artifact to NASM in 1970.