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Wed, December 15 2010

Under the Lime-Green Leisure Suit

Getting ready to move gives you a chance to pull all those old boxes out from the back corners of your closets.  You know what's in them - like that box with Uncle Bob's 1970s lime-green polyester leisure suit - but it's always good to double check these things.  It's no different when you're preparing to move an archival collection. 

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Archives - Microfilm
Fri, December 10 2010

The Curtiss-Wright Corporation Collection – Patent Files

In 1929, the Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company merged with the Wright Aeronautical Corporation to form the Curtiss-Wright Corporation. The merger of these two companies created one of the largest aircraft manufacturers in the country, which held numerous patents for aircraft.

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Curtiss-Wright Patent
Fri, December 3 2010

Robert Goddard and the Smithsonian

A native of Worcester, Massachusetts, born in 1882, Goddard earned a B.Sc. from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (1908) and an M.Sc. (1911) and a Ph.D. (1912) in physics from Clark University. After some important early work in electronics, the young professor began his work on rocketry and spaceflight. In 1914 he patented the design of both a multistage and a liquid propellant rocket and conducted an experiment demonstrating the ability of a rocket to function in space. The work was becoming ever more expensive, he explained to Abbot, and wondered if the Smithsonian could offer any support.

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Robert Hutchings Goddard
Wed, November 24 2010

First Aircraft Moves Into Udvar-Hazy Center Restoration Hangar

This week, the Museum moved its first aircraft into the Mary Baker Engen Restoration Hanger in the new wing of the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA. The aircraft is the Curtiss SB2C Helldiver, the same type of aircraft flown by former Museum director, Don Engen during World War II.

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Staff Move Helldiver into Mary Baker Engen Restoration Hangar
Thu, November 18 2010

A New History of the Museum

Built in 1918, the Aircraft Building housed most of the Museum's aviation collection for decades.  Taken in 1938, this photo also shows a tank and artillery piece displayed by the front door. Featured in National Air and Space Museum: An Autobiography

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Thaddeus Lowe Balloon Reconnaissance at Battle of Fair Oaks
Fri, November 12 2010

A Blending of Photography and X-Ray

Curators at the Air and Space Museum are learning how to combine x-rays and photographs of object to gain a glimpse into their preservation and history. 

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Apollo EVA Boot
Mon, November 8 2010

Vintage Aircraft Tool Cataloging, Re-housing and Preservation Project

In the years following WWII the United States and her Allies conducted engineering and flight tests of many different types of captured or surrendered Axis aircraft, primarily from Germany and Japan. Many of these aircraft were acquired by Allied and US technical intelligence collection teams.  It was ordered that at least one of each type of enemy aircraft be captured and evaluated by these teams, and that each aircraft type be maintained in flyable condition for a minimum of one year. To make this possible all technical data and support materiel available (such as tool kits, parts, etc.) had to also be captured to meet this requirement.

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German WWII Focke-Wulf
Mon, November 1 2010

Restoring and Preserving Aircraft

Next year, the National Air and Space Museum will begin restoring and preserving aircraft in the brand-new Mary Baker Engen Restoration Hangar, part of the Phase Two complex now under construction at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center.  To treat the aircraft, the Museum applies a philosophy and range of techniques that have steadily evolved through the years.

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Boeing Milestones of Flight Hall
Mon, October 25 2010

The Airplane and Streamlined Design

To American industrial designers of the 1930s airplanes were not simply machines of transport, but emblems of technological innovation and progress. The National Air and Space Museum’s newly redone Barron Hilton Pioneers of Flight Gallery includes a unit devoted to “The Airplane and Streamlined Design,” which demonstrates how industrial designers appropriated the imagery of the modern airliner for their products.

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Streamline Design

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