National Air & Space Museum Site Index
Skylab Gallery


A sign accompanying the Skylab display. It reads


This is the backup for the Skylab Orbital Workshop, which was part of America's first space station. Launched on May 14, 1973, Skylab also included the Multiple Docking Adapter and Airlock Module.

The orbital workshop is a modified third stage of a Saturn V launch vehicle. The thing film of gold covering the workshop was part of a thermal control system to regulate temperature. The large winglike solar panel array generated electric power from sunlight.

In 1973-74, three 3-man crews lived in Skylab, conducting a variety of scientific research projects in Earth orbit. The third crew stayed almost three months, the longest manned U.S. mission to date. The Skylab missions demonstrated that people could work productively and physically withstand long stays in space.

Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Length: 15 m (48 ft)
Diameter: 6.5 m (22 ft)
Total Weight: 35,400 kg (78,000 lb)
Manufacturer: McDonnell Douglas
Astronautics Co.
Launch vehicle: Saturn V

Time picture taken Tue Jun 19 11:12:02 2007
Location picture taken Second Floor Balcony
Overlooking Space Race Gallery
National Air & Space Museum
Washington, DC
Picture also in Space Race Gallery
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