Artifacts

CORONA Film

Artifact Details

The film had to be parachuted to earth and intercepted in midair over the Pacific Ocean. The first successful recovery of film from space occurred on August 18, 1960.

CORONA is America’s first successful photographic reconnaissance satellite. When introduced in the 1960s, it revolutionized the collection of intelligence. CORONA’s first mission in August 1960 provided more photographic coverage of the Soviet Union than all previous U-2 aircraft missions.

Satellite imagery was used for a variety of analytical purposes – from assessing Soviet military strength to estimating the size of their grain production. CORONA and its successors made Soviet-American strategic arms-control agreements possible.

Artifact Specs

7.4 cm x 15 cm  (film)
8.1 cm x 16.5 cm (canister)
(H x Diameter)

Additional Photos

The film had to be parachuted to earth and intercepted in midair over the Pacific Ocean. The first successful recovery of film from space occurred on August 18, 1960.

Videos

The Debrief: Behind the Artifact - CORONA Satellite

CORONA: America's Eye in Outer Space