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Item 2161 - Mercury-Atlas 1 Flown Heatshield Catalog 569 (Oct 2019)

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(we are no longer accepting bids on this item)
Minimum Bid: $200.00
Sold Price: $275.00 (includes buyer's premium)

Description


Flown René 41 outer shell and insulation fragments from the Mercury-Atlas 1 space capsule, measuring approximately .75″ x .5″, matted with images to an overall size of 11 x 14. In very good to fine condition, with slight bends to the matted presentation.

Less than a minute after the launch of the unmanned Mercury-Atlas 1 on July 29, 1960, both its rocket and capsule sank into the Atlantic Ocean following a structural failure in the craft’s Atlas rocket. Successful recovery of the capsule and portions of the rocket showed that the vent valve and a still-attached segment of piping had noticeable fatigue cracks, leading engineers to conclude that reinforced skin structure and shallower launch trajectories need be implemented for future Mercury-Atlas launches.

Provenance: The Spaceflight America Museum and Science Center in Prince Frederick, MD, and accompanied by the museum's display placard.

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