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Thu, July 14 2016

Recognizing Figures in Early French Flight

This Bastille Day, we take time to recognize some of the most colorful personalities in early French flight including Jules Védrines who was known as a rough-and-tumble, foul-mouthed, and unpredictable aviator and Hubert Latham who once declared to the French president that he was "a man of the world."

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Hubert Latham in His "Antoinette IV"
Wed, July 13 2016

Hand-building Radar Systems

Radar instruments play an important role in our study of Earth’s nearest neighbors, such as the Moon, Venus, and Mars. Radar can provide a range of information regarding the materials that make up the surface of a planet and offer a unique perspective on the underlying structure. To get the most out of our research it is important to have a fundamental understanding of the hardware that makes up a radar instrument. What better way to achieve this than build our own.

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Geophysicist Bruce Campbell with Hand-Built Radar
Tue, July 12 2016

Uncovering the Moon's Secrets

The Moon and its surface provide insights into the early history of the solar system. Therefore, the origins of the Moon also inform the origins of the Earth.

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Uncovering the Moon's Secrets

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Illustration of Moon Formation
Thu, July 7 2016

Planets Aligned

The Voyager probes were designed for a "grand tour" of the solar system, when scientists realized the planets would be aligned in the 1970s. The spacecraft collected significant new knowledge and data: Voyager 2 sent back the first images of Uranus and Neptune. The probe found 11 new moons, and a significant magnetic field around Uranus. Voyager 2 also discovered that Jupiter's Red Spot was actually a large storm in the planet’s atmosphere. Both Voyager spacecraft are still in space, exploring what lies outside our solar system.

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Planets Aligned

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Illustration of the Voyager spacecraft
Mon, June 27 2016

Universe of Trek Fandom

Star Trek has become well known for having passionate fans. From the original three-season television show, the Star Trek franchise grew to include additional television programs, major motion pictures, novels, and merchandise. Beginning with the first fan convention in 1972, Star Trek’s fandom became a worldwide phenomenon including conventions, fan clubs, cosplay, written fiction, and more.

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Universe of Trek Fandom

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Costumes on Display in Star Trek Exhibition
Mon, June 27 2016

Enterprise Studio Model Back on Display

The studio model of the Star Trek starship Enterprise is now on exhibit in the Boeing Milestones of Flight Hall. After taking it off exhibit in 2014, assembling a special advisory committee, examining it using x-ray radiography, searching out long-lost photos, and planning the work in great detail, months of hard work culminated in several weeks of painting, detail work, rewiring, and final assembly. In the end, the whole project was a tremendous collaboration.

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Enterprise Studio Model Back on Display

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Inspecting the Enterprise Saucer
Wed, June 15 2016

Inside the Sally K. Ride Papers – Now Open for Research

Last October, we announced that we had acquired the collection of Sally K. Ride, the first American woman in space. Now, we can share that the archival portion of the collection has been processed and is available for research! See our finding aid for more detailed information.

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Signed Portrait of Sally Ride
Thu, May 12 2016

A New Home for an Old Glove

What makes a tattered and torn glove worthy of collecting? When it once belonged to the third highest scoring ace in aviation history Günther Rall. The glove (with its thumb visibly damaged from a 1944 air raid in whichRall was hit in the left hand by gun fire), a painted portrait of Rall as a prisoner of war, and his diary from 1942 were all recently donated to the Museum.

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Günter Rall's Glove
Sun, April 17 2016

Well, is it Flak Bait or Flak-Bait?

As the curator for the Museum’s Martin B-26B Marauder, I’ve become obsessed with the proper way to designate the name given to it by its first pilot Jim Farrell in August 1943. It...

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Well, is it Flak Bait or Flak-Bait?

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Martin B-26B-25-MA Marauder "Flak-Bait"
Wed, March 16 2016

Robert Goddard and the First Liquid-Propellant Rocket

Ninety years ago today, on March 16, 1926, Robert H. Goddard (1882-1945) launched the world’s first liquid-propellant rocket. His rickety contraption, with its combustion chamber and nozzle on top, burned for 20 seconds before consuming enough liquid oxygen and gasoline to lift itself off the launch rack. The rocket took off from a snowy field outside Worcester, Massachusetts, reaching a height of about 12.5 meters (41 feet) and a distance of 56 meters (184 feet). It was smashed on impact. Goddard, his wife Esther, and a couple of assistants from Clark University, where he was a physics professor, were the only witnesses.

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Goddard 1926 Rocket

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