Preservation and restoration is the highly specialized work necessary to preserve, return to its previous condition, and display the collection of aviation and space artifacts.

The Preservation and Restoration Unit accomplishes this through a blend of period-correct techniques and tools, and modern Computer Aided Design (CAD)/ Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) capabilities. From traditional wood and leatherwork to 3D scanners, water-jets, and more, the Preservation and Restoration Unit has the technology and personnel necessary to replicate or repair nearly anything that may be required. Project can vary from structural repairs in wood and metal, fully repainting and stenciling aircraft of various nationalities, and re-activating systems used by the air- or spacecraft while in operation.

Once an artifact has been treated it must be prepared for either ground or suspended display. Ground displays require the design and fabrication of specialized equipment to ensure the safe support of each artifact. Similarly, preparation for suspended display requires design, fabrication, and installation of custom rigging fixtures, specially designed to connect with the structure of the air and space artifacts. The Preservation and Restoration Unit works on each of these.

To learn more about the staff that do this work, visit the Preservation and Restoration unit's About page.