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Aerobee Nose Cone Shell

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Display Status:

This object is on display in the James S. McDonnell Space Hangar room at Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA.

Collection Item Summary:

This is the Agena-B upper stage used during the 1960s as an orbital injection vehicle for Midas and other satellites. It was also an intermediate stage booster for Ranger and early Mariner space probes. Made by Lockheed, it was fitted on the Thor or Atlas-D launch vehicles that became known as the Thor-Agena and Atlas-Agena.

Most notably, Agena-B also served as the Corona photo reconnaissance satellite which then flew under the cover name Discoverer. Agena-B used a restartable and gimbaled liquid-fuel rocket engine made by the Bell Aerospace Company. This Agena-B was transferred from the U.S. Air Force to the Smithsonian Institution in 1965.

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

Lockheed Missiles and Space Co.

Credit Line

Transferred from the U.S. Air Force

Materials

  • Aluminum
  • Steel
  • Gold Plating
  • Rubber
  • Plastic
  • Foam
  • Fiberglass
  • Thoriated Magnesium

Dimensions

Overall: 285 5/8 in. long x 60 in. diameter, 1810 lb. (725.43 x 152.4cm, 821kg)

See more items in

National Air and Space Museum Collection

Country of Origin

United States of America

Date

1960-1966

Type

PROPULSION-Miscellaneous

Inventory Number

A19650291000

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